Wednesday, December 18, 2019

URSP Student Sam Yee Investigates 2-Dimensional Materials for Photonic Utilization

I first became interested in the study of 2-Dimensional(2D) materials when I began investigating undergraduate research opportunities within the Physics Department at GMU.  2D materials have tremendous potential to change the landscape of technology as the maximum efficiency and overall sized of electronics are largely determined by the individual components inside them.

During my time in the Vora Lab I have learned many valuable skills in 2D material handling and sample preparation.  I have learned and practiced methods of optical experiment design, assembly, alignment and calibration. I have also fine-tuned techniques of sample data collection and analysis.  Finally, I have been immersed in the field of 2D materials research as I review other researcher’s publications, prepare reports on my own experiments, and write proposals for funding, which are all invaluable skills within the field of optics.

 For a normal week I prepare 2D samples for measurement and then take various images and spectral measurements of those samples.  I setup, align and calibrate optical equipment that is used in gathering those data.  I process and analyze the data that I have collected as well as prepare summaries for my mentors and the other research teams we corroborate with.  I also review several current research papers that my professor highlights from my field.  I converse with my graduate student mentors several times a day as well as my professor mentor about once a day.  I sit in on conference calls or meetings with other research groups, both at GMU as well as other universities regarding various topics currently under investigation in our lab.  Finally, I review and answer emails from these other groups regarding our research.
I am honored and grateful for the opportunity provided by the URSP to conduct research in the field of optics and 2D materials.  I am also very grateful my mentors, Dr. Patrick Vora, and graduate students, Sean Oliver and Jaydeep Joshi who provided invaluable advice and guidance throughout the duration of this study.