CNFM faculty Dr. Shannon Bartelt-Hunt is featured in the UNL Today article, "Researchers show environment can neutralize lethal proteins".  Researchers from UNL, Creighton University and Colorado State University found that watering and drying soil as few as 10 times can reduce the presence of prions and curb their ability to infect normal proteins in brain tissue.  “We know environmental prions remain infectious, but there is little information about how natural processes influence soil-bound prions,” said co-author Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, associate professor of civil engineering at UNL. "We were interested specifically in the behavior of the protein attached to surface soils, so we wanted to evaluate a process that routinely occurs in the environment.”  Read more... (February 20, 2015)

CNFM faculty members Dr. Alex Sinitskii, Dr. Eva Franke Schubert, Dr. Tino Hofmann, and graduate student Peter Wilson are featured in the UNL Today article, “Study shows graphene can protect nanotechnology from heat”. Along with others from UNL, they co-authored a new study showing that coats of graphene — a honeycombed sheet of carbon only one atom thick — can protect delicate nanostructures against temperatures that would otherwise melt them. Their results suggest that graphene could be employed to protect many other metallic — and possibly even nonmetallic — materials that might be used in nanotechnology. Read more... (February 16, 2015)

Dr. Philipp Kuehne, CNFM PhD graduate in May, 2014, was selected to receive the 2015 Folsom Distinguished Dissertation Award. The Folsom Distinguished Dissertation Award is the highest distinction given by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln among its annual class of graduating PhD candidates, based on internal and external reviews of their theses considering quality, clarity, scholarship, methodology, and contribution to the field. Three awards were selected for 2015. (January 2015)

Dr. Alexander Sinitskii is featured in the 2013-2014 Annual Report of the UNL Office of Research and Economic Development article "Fabricating Graphene Nanoribbons". He and his research team have developed a method to create a narrow band of graphene, or nanoribbon, that can effectively channel electrons and allow devices to control their flow. Sinitskii and his team build the high quality ribbons from the bottom up, using organic chemistry techniques to couple smaller molecules together. The process also allows scientists to fabricate nanoribbons in large quantities. Read the article... (January 2015)

Dr. Tino Hofmann was named a Marie Curie Fellow and a VINNMER Fellow. The Fellowship is supported by the EU Marie Curie Action and Sweden's innovation agency, VINNOVA, with a generous grant to progress collaboration between the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the University of Linköping, Sweden, and private enterprises in the US and Sweden. The goal of this collaboration between world-leading experts in epitaxial graphene growth in Sweden with experts in the Center of Nanohybrid Functional Materials at UNL is to design, manufacture, and characterize graphene-metal nanostructure hybrid materials for novel terahertz frequency devices. (December 2014)

Dr. David Hage will receive the 2015 Eastern Analytical Symposium Award for Outstanding Achievements in Separation Science. The award recognizes his leadership at the interface of chemistry, biochemistry and clinical chemistry creating and developing many new separation methods for bioanalysis that have important applications in the life sciences. The award ceremony will be held at the 2015 Eastern Analytical Symposium at the Garden State Exhibit Center in Somerset, New Jersey, November 16-18, 2015 in conjunction with a symposium held in Hage's honor. (December 2014)

Dr. David Hage

Dr. Alexander Sinitskii and a team of UNL scientists are featured in the article, "Researchers engineer improvements of technology used in digital memory" in UNL Today.  The team, which published its findings in the Nov. 24 edition of the journal Nature Communications, engineered and tested improvements in the performance of a memory structure known as a ferroelectric tunnel junction. From left in the photo are Alexei Gruverman, Alexander Sinitskii and Evgeny Tsymbal. Read more...  (November 24, 2014)

Chad Briley, a member of Dr. Mathias Schubert's research group, was awarded the 2014 Ellipsometry Focus Topic Award at the AVS 61th International Symposium & Exhibition in Baltimore, Maryland. Chad's talk on "Vector Magneto-Optical Generalized Ellipsometry on Sculptured Thin Films with Forward Calculated Uniaxial Response Simulation" was selected as the winning contribution from three graduate student nominees. The Ellipsometry Focus Topic Award at the AVS 61th international symposium was sponsored by the J.A.Woollam Co., Inc., of Lincoln, Nebraska.   (November 14, 2014)

Congratulations to Derek Sekora for winning the "Men's Overall" of the 34th Annual AVS Run. The AVS Run is the oldest professional society run on our planet and was held during the AVS 61st International Symposium & Exhibition in Baltimore, Maryland. The results of the 5K run are posted here.  (November 12, 2014)

Dr. Raychelle Burks gave a plenary lecture and Jordyn Atwater was an invited student speaker at UNL's WoPhyS14 Conference Nov. 6-8, 2014. Both are members of Dr. Andrea Holmes' research group at Doane College.  From the left in the photo are Jordyn Atwater, Dr. Raychelle Burks,  and Dr. Andrea Holmes.

Dr. David Hage's work investigating factors affecting the potency of diabetes medications is featured in UNL Today. Hage, professor in the UNL Chemistry Department, is constructing intersections at which to analyze how the bonding of protein and glucose, or glycation, alters the effectiveness of diabetes medications. Hage and his colleagues are exploring applications of a technique known as high-performance affinity chromatography. Read more... (November 3, 2014)

CNFM in collaboration with NSF MRSEC QSPIN proudly announces the Sixth Annual Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physical Sciences WoPhyS14 Thursday, Nov. 6 - Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014. This conference highlights progress in the quest for new materials and nanoscience, and invites research active undergraduate students in physics, chemistry, engineering, astronomy or related STEM disciplines. CNFM will feature guided facilities tours and presentation by graduate and undergraduate students of their research. (October 2014)

Dr. Rebecca Lai and Dr. Raychelle Burks present Sci Pop Talks! Where Science Intersects Pop Culture. A weekly series of talks open to the public featuring the intersection of science and pop culture, on October 29, 7:00pm in Love Library Talk Zone (Twitter: #SciPopTalks), Rebecca and Raychelle will unveil the struggles of relentless chemistries in survival between Vampires and Zombies. SciPOP talks are co-sponsored by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln University Libraries and Chemistry Department, and Doane College. (October 2014)

CNFM faculty Dr. Eva Franke-Schubert, Dr. Angela Pannier, Dr. Shannon Bartelt-Hunt and Dr. Ming Han were named Engineering Leadership Fellows in the College of Engineering. The four-year term of endowed fellowships supports projects oriented toward broadening participation in faculty leadership development. Recipients are selected by the Dean of the College of Engineering and projects are conducted with support from the College leadership team and department chairs. (September 2014)

Dr. Mathias Schubert, CNFM Co-director, was named a Fellow of the Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research, Dresden, Germany. As a Fellow of the Institute, Schubert serves as an adjunct faculty member of the research institution, co-supervising graduate students and performing collaborative research activities. The Leibniz-Institut für Polymerforschung Dresden e. V. (Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research Dresden) is one of the largest polymer research institutions in Germany, and is engaged in application-oriented fundamental research. The institute is a member of the Leibniz-Gemeinschaft (Leibniz Association). (June 2014)

Donna Kunkel has won the Nottingham Prize at the 74th Physical Electronics Conference for a project that is currently funded through an exploratory grant from CNFM. She reported on her research on organic co-crystals. Donna is a graduate student working with Dr. Axel Enders. The Nottingham Prize is the most prestigious award for graduate students in the field of surface sciences, and Donna is the first UNL student to be awarded the prize. (June, 2014)

Dr. Angela Pannier's NSF CAREER Award gene delivery tool research is featured as Today’s Video – front and center – on the NSF’s Science 360 News Service. (June 20, 2014)

Erika Pfaunmiller has been selected by the journal Bioanalysis as one of 15 nominees for their 2014 Young Investigator Award. (June 2014) Read more....

Dr. Ming Han has been promoted to Associate Professor in the UNL Electrical and Computer  Engineering Department. (April 2014)

Congratulations to the following for receiving 2014 Milton E. Mohr Graduate Fellowships: Anita Zaitouna and Ryan Matsuda from the UNL Chemistry Department, and Alyssa Koch from the UNL  Electrical and Computer Engineering Department. Congratulations also to Mitchell Milunak from the UNL Chemistry Department for receiving a Milton E. Mohr Undergraduate Scholarship. (April 2014)

Derek Sekora's poster, entitled “In-Situ Generalized Ellipsometry Characterization of Nanostructured Silicon during Lithium-ion Intercalation”, won 2nd place with a $300 cash prize from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the 2014 EE graduate poster competition held during the UNL Graduate Research Fair. Ryan Davis and Dan Liang both won an “Honorable Mention” and received a $50 cash prize each. (April 2014)

Philipp Kuehne is the recipient of the 2014 UNL College of Engineering Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award. He received the award in recognition for his PhD thesis entitled “THE OPTICAL HALL EFFECT IN THREE- AND TWO-DIMENSIONAL MATERIALS” submitted to the College of Engineering in April 2014. The award was announced and honored at the annual college-wide Graduate Student Recognition Event during E-Week Open House on April 25, 2014. The winner of the award also receives a $500 cash prize from the College of Engineering.

Dr. Alexander Sinitskii, assistant professor in the UNL Department of Chemistry, has been awarded the Harold and Esther Edgerton Junior Faculty Award. The honor is presented each year to recognize an outstanding junior faculty member who has demonstrated creative research, extraordinary teaching abilities and academic promise. In only two and a half years, Sinitskii’s research accomplishments have established him as a rising star at the interface of materials science, inorganic chemistry and nanoscience. (March 2014) Read more...

Dr. Rebecca Lai, associate professor in the UNL Department of Chemistry, has been named the Susan J. Rosowski Associate Professor of Chemistry. The Rosowski professorship recognizes faculty at the associate professor level who have achieved distinguished records of scholarship or creative activity and who show exceptional promise for future excellence. Lai has developed a well-deserved national reputation in the area of biosensors and bioanalytical chemistry.  In addition, she is an effective classroom teacher, combining a passion for education with a sense of humor. (March 2014)  Read more...

CNFM Co-director Dr. Patrick Dussault, professor in the UNL Department of Chemistry, was recognized with a College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award. The Dussault lab is a world leader in the synthesis and chemistry of organic peroxides. (March 2014) Read more...

Dr. Alexander Sinitskii, assistant professor in the UNL Department of Chemistry, has led his team of scientists in developing a chemical approach to mass producing graphene nanoribbons, a process that may provide an avenue to harnessing graphene's conductivity. (Feb. 2014) Read more...

Philipp Kühne and Alex Boosalis were awarded the 2013 Ellipsometry Focus Topic Award at the AVS 60th international symposium. The awardees were chosen by the Focus Topic Programm Committee for the best contributed papers given by a graduate student or young post-doc researcher. Philipp was awarded for his talk on "Optical Hall Effect - Detection of Symmetric and Anti-Symmetric Landau-Level Transitions in Multilayer Epitaxial Graphene on C-face SiC". Alex gave a presentation about "A Physical Model Dielectric Function for Graphene from the THz to the UV". The Ellipsometry Focus Topic Award at the AVS 60th international symposium is sponsored by the J.A.Woollam Co., Inc. of Lincoln, Nebraska. (October 2013)

Dr. Raychelle Burks, postdoctoral researcher in the Doane College Chemistry Department, created the idea of having the Do-It-Yourself ScienceZone at the GeekGirlCon held Oct. 19-20, 2013 in Seattle. She raised funds to bring scientists from all over the country to work in the ScienceZone so attendees could get to know 'real' scientists while having fun  learning about science. Read more...

Dr. Rebecca Lai, associate professor in the UNL Department of Chemistry, will present "Chemistry - Harry Potter Style" at "Sunday with a Scientist" at Morrill Hall, UNL, on Sunday, June 16, 2013, 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. Visitors will be introduced to some of the wizardly wonders that exist in the real world.

Dr. Angela Pannier, associate professor of biological systems engineering, earned a five-year Faculty Early Career Development Program Award (CAREER) from the National Science Foundation to continue her research in using nanotechnology to develop a gene delivery tool that could unleash the power of gene therapy. (May 2013) Read more...

Dr. Angela Pannier has been granted tenure and been promoted to associate professor in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering at UNL. (March 2013)

Dr. Eva Franke Schubert has been granted tenure and been promoted to associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UNL. (March 2013)

"Shining a New Light with Nano Sensing Methods" is a new highlight on the Nebraska EPSCoR's website. The article features the bold vision of Mathias Schubert and CNFM in creating new biosensors.

The same article is also featured in the National Science Foundation's November 28, 2012 Science 360 e-news weekly bulletin.

The article "Sensing Change" is featured in the November 2012 issue of International Innovation magazine published by Research Media Ltd in Bristol UK. In the article, Dr. Mathias Schubert explains his study of indium gallium nitride semiconductor systems. The accompanying article "Lightbulb Moment" describes the work of CNFM scientists. International Innovation is the leading global dissemination resource for the wider scientific, technology and research communities, dedicated to disseminating the latest science, research and technological innovations on a global level. More information and a complimentary subscription offer to the publication can be found at:

Over 30 posters were presented by CNFM students and investigators at the August 15-16, 2012, EPSCoR External Review Panel Meeting held in Lincoln NE. See photo at right of Dr. Andrea Holmes' CNFM Research Group from Doane College, Crete NE.

A handheld tool is under development to diagnose traumatic brain injuries on the spot using technology developed by UNL chemist and CNFM Professor David Hage. Such a device could yield critical and in some cases life-saving information to guide triage decisions from the battlefield to the football field. SFC Fluidics, a Fayetteville, Ark.-based biotechnology company, recently entered into a license agreement with UNL's nonprofit affiliate, NUtech Ventures, to use technology developed by Dr. Hage. (July 2012) Read more...

Dr. Rebecca Lai will present "DNA: The Molecule of Life" at 'Sunday with a Scientist' at UNL's Morrill Hall, Nebraska's State Museum, from 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 17, 2012. The presentation will help visitors better understand the history, structure, and importance of DNA through visuals and hands-on activities.

CNFM welcomes Research Electrical Engineer Dr. Rafal Korlacki as the new Core Facility Director. Rafal was previously a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UNL. His Ph.D. is in Physics from the Department of Biophysics and Molecular Physics at the University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland. Rafal is a skilled researcher in optics, spectroscopy and spectroscopic ellipsometry, with applications ranging from materials, to lasers, to electrochemistry. When he’s not building microscopes, Rafal can be found playing Legos (either with his kids - or alone).

The CNFM core facility, located on the second floor of Scott Engineering Center, includes a variety of research instrumentation for surface preparation and characterization: some particular strengths include instrumentation for atomic layer deposition and ellipsometry. The facility also includes wet lab facilities for surface film preparation. Rafal can be contacted at . (April 2012)

CNFM graduate student Keith "Brian" Rodenhausen received a Mohr Fellowship for 2012-13. The Milton E. Mohr Scholarship and Fellowship Awards Program was established in 1989 for students in the College of Engineering or Biotechnology degree programs. Students are selected on their academic performance and potential for accomplishments in their specific field. (April 2012)

Congratulations to Philipp Kühne and Stefan Schöche for being selected winners in the 2012 EE graduate poster competition, held during the UNL Graduate Research Fair. Stefan received 2nd place for his poster "Spectroscopic Ellipsometry and Optical Hall-Effect study of free-charge carriers in InN:Mg - Indications for successful p-type doping" and Philipp received an honorable mention for his poster "The Optical Hall effect". Photos at right show Stefan and Philipp with Dr. Jerry Hudgins, ECE Department Chair, and Cheryl Wemhoff, ECE Graduate Student Coordinator. (April 2012)

CNFM graduate students present posters at the UNL Spring Graduate Research Fair, April 4-5, 2012. See photo at right.

Dr. David Hage has been named James Hewett University Professor of Chemistry. See article. (April 2012)

CNFM Co-director Dr. Mathias Schubert has been granted tenure and been promoted to full professor. (March 2012)

Dr. Rebecca Lai has been granted tenure and been promoted to associate professor. (March 2012)

CNFM Co-director Dr. Mathias Schubert gave invited presentations at the 65th IUVSTA Workshop in Peckforton Castle, Cheshire, UK, and the 7th Workshop Ellipsometry, Leipzig, Germany, on recent developments for chemical, biochemical and biological sensing and separation principles. For more information see IUVSTA and Leipzig. (February 2012)

Dr. Mathias Schubert was named a Fellow of the American Physical Society for the development of generalized ellipsometry and the invention of the Optical Hall Effect. (November 2011)

Nov 4, 2011: Stefan Schöche is the winner of the 2011 Applied Surface Science Division Student Award at the 58th AVS meeting in Nashville, Tennessee. Keith Brian Rodenhausen and Daniel Schmidt are winners of the 2011 Topical Focus Ellipsometry Session Best Young Scientist Paper Awards, along with Noemi Leick-Marius, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, The Netherlands. The Ellipsometry student awards are sponsored by the J.A.Woollam Co., Inc. of Lincoln, Nebraska.

The article "Nanohybrids Promise 'BEST OF BOTH WORLDS'" features CNFM in the 2010-11 Annual Report of the UNL Office of Research and Economic Development recently released at the UNL Research Fair on Nov. 2, 2011. CNFM Co-directors Pat Dussault and Matthias Schubert are interviewed in the article.

CNFM PIs Dr. Tino Hofmann and Dr. Mathias Schubert received a 3-year award from the U.S. Department of Commerce - National Institute of Technology (NIST) on "Ellipsometric Materials Characterization of Electronic Thin Film Heterostructures". The research will establish a database for selected contemporary semiconductor materials over an extremely wide energy range from the terahertz to the VUV using the unique instrumentation at UNL and at NIST.

Dr. Ming Han, assistant professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, received a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of the Navy through the nationwide Chief of Naval Research Challenge. Read more...

Dr. Christopher Exstrom, professor of Chemistry, University of Nebraska-Kearney, won the Leland Holdt/Security Mutual Life Faculty Award in December 2010. This award is the most prestigious award at the University of Nebraska-Kearney and recognizes excellence in faculty teaching and research.

Keith "Brian" Rodenhausen, a CNFM graduate assistant with Prof. Mathias Schubert, was the winner of the 2011 Graduate Research Symposium "Outstanding Presentation" award from the UNL College of Engineering for his presentation on "Hybrid in-situ spectroscopic ellipsometry and quartz crystal microbalance to study rigid, organic ultra-thin films."

Dr. Daniel Schmidt,  a CNFM postdoctoral researcher,  was the recipient of the 2011 Paul Drude Medal for his contributions to the field of spectroscopic ellipsometry with a strong focus on anisotropic properties of nanostructured hybrid materials. The Paul Drude Medal is named in honor of Paul Karl Ludwig Drude (1867 - 1906), who invented and first applied ellipsometry. The Paul Drude Medal is presented by the Organizing Committee Chairman at a ceremonial session of the Workshop Ellipsometry (WSE). The Paul Drude Medal is given at each Workshop Ellipsometry to an up-and-coming young scientist for the field of ellipsometric metrology or spectroscopy. Read more...

Dr. Mathias Schubert received an Outstanding Reviewer recognition award from the Elsevier editors of Acta Materialia.

Research Assistant Professor Tino Hofmann has been invited to serve on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Review of Scientific Instruments.

Daniel Schmidt,  a CNFM graduate student, received the 2010 Applied Surface Science Division Student Award at the 57th American Vacuum Society (AVS) meeting in Albuquerque, NM.

Stefan Schoeche, a CNFM graduate student, won a Best Research Presentation Award at the UNL Graduate Research Fair with the poster "THz optical Hall-effect and MIR-VUV ellipsometry characterization of 2DEG properties in AlGaN/GaN HEMT structures."