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William Tisdale earns Early Career Award

William Tisdale
William Tisdale
Photo: Melanie Miller

William A. Tisdale, the Charles and Hilda Roddey Career Development Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, is a recipient of the 2013 Early Career Award of the Office of Science of the Department of Energy.

Across the Office of Basic Energy Sciences divisions, 61 awards were made out of about 770 proposals that went out for peer-review. The $750,000 award will support his work over five years to develop a novel ultrafast microscopy technique for visualizing electronic processes at interfaces in next-generation solar cells.

The objective of Tisdale’s research is to explore a novel methodology for visualization of ultrafast electronic processes at interfaces. The method, which is based on optical stimulation, builds upon previous success using spontaneous surface nonlinear optical probes to track the temporal evolution of interfacial electric fields resulting from charge separation across an interface.

One goal of the work is to speed signal acquisition by up to seven orders of magnitude so that laser scanning ultrafast microscopy becomes feasible. The ultimate aim is to generate movies of interfacial electronic phenomena occurring on femtosecond timescales and submicron length scales, thereby informing our understanding of disorder, heterogeneity and morphology, and how these factors affect ensemble behavior in photovoltaic, electrochemical and optoelectronic systems.

Tisdale joined the MIT faculty in January 2012. He received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering (magna cum laude) from the University of Delaware in 2005. In July 2010, he completed his Ph.D. in chemical engineering at the University of Minnesota under the joint direction of professors Eray Aydil, David Norris, and Xiaoyang Zhu (Department of Chemistry). Before coming to Chemical Engineering, Tisdale was a postdoctoral associate with Professor Vladimir Bulović in the Research Laboratory of Electronics at MIT, where he studied exciton diffusion and energy transfer in nanostructured thin films.

Other MIT faculty members to receive a 2013 Early Career Award are Alfredo Alexander-Katz of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and William Detmold, Liang Fu and Michael Williams from Physics.

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