The Advanced Photon Source
a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility

NST Colloquium - Robot-accelerated Materials Discovery: From Perovskites to Photon Avalanches

Type Of Event
Dr. Emory Chan, The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Jie Xue
Start Date
Start Time
11:00 a.m.

Abstract:  Hybrid inorganic/organic materials and doped nanocrystals offer modular platforms for generating libraries of custom materials, whose properties can be tailored to applications in lasers, lighting, and imaging. The large number of components in these complex materials, and the numerous parameters that specify their synthesis, result in an experimental space that is challenging to explore with conventional laboratory techniques. I will discuss the development of data-enabled strategies for discovering new materials through the combination of robotic synthesis, physical models, and machine learning. I will first discuss our Robot-Accelerated Perovskite Investigation and Discovery (RAPID) workflow, which has performed over 10,000 distinct reactions. We used these large datasets to train machine learning classification models for the crystallization of metal halide perovskites and to elucidate the reaction networks that govern chemical transformations of perovskites. I will also discuss how our robot-accelerated techniques are used to investigate the complex photophysical networks that govern the optical properties of lanthanide-doped upconverting nanoparticles. Automated synthesis of these materials, coupled with photophysical models validated by high-throughput datasets, have facilitated the discovery of new upconverting materials including photon avalanching nanoparticles. I will demonstrate how the giant nonlinear optical responses of avalanching nanoparticles have enabled sub-diffraction-limited imaging and the observation of continuous-wave, upconverted lasing in microcavities and plasmonic arrays.

Biography:  Dr. Emory Chan is a Staff Scientist at the Molecular Foundry, a Department of Energy nanoscience user facility at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Dr. Chan received his B.S. in Chemistry from Stanford University and his Ph. D. in Physical Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. Chan’s research interests include the high-throughput synthesis and characterization of materials, in situ liquid cell TEM, and developing optical applications that harness the complex energy transfer networks in lanthanide-doped nanomaterials. To support these research thrusts, Dr. Chan has developed robotic workflows that increase the reproducibility and throughput of colloidal nanoparticle synthesis while also enabling machine-learning guided experimentation. These capabilities are offered to scientists worldwide as part of the Molecular Foundry’s User Program.

Virtual Location: 

Phone Dial-in
+1.312.216.0325 (US (Chicago))
+1.408.740.7256 (US (San Jose))
+1.866.226.4650 (US Toll Free)
(Global Numbers)
Meeting ID: 891 381 233
Room System: or


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