Dr. Delia Milliron: Nanostructure Materials for Energy

Dr. Delia Milliron is an associate professor in the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering and is affiliate with the Texas Materials Institute. Dr. Milliron earned her PhD in 2004 from the University of California, Berkeley, and her research is focused on nanostructured materials for energy.

Chemistry of Nanocrystals

ChemColloidal inorganic nanocrystals represent a unique system in which intriguing solid-state properties are combined with easy post-synthesis processability. Careful manipulation of synthetic parameters enables precise control of their composition (e.g. doping and crystalline phase), morphology (e.g. size and shape) and surface functionalization, allowing detailed manipulation of nanocrystal properties.

The Milliron group focuses on the synthesis of several different classes of colloidal nanocrystals, including native (e.g. MgO) and doped (e.g. ITO and AZO) metal oxides and phase-change materials (e.g. GeTe). The discovery of new synthetic approaches is informed by a fundamental understanding of the chemical processes occurring in our reaction vessels. In addition, they have developed a robotic workstation for automated nanomaterials discovery and analysis (WANDA) that allows high-throughput screening of reaction conditions, reproducibility and scale-up.

The ability to rapidly iterate through reaction conditions and characterize physical properties enables the efficient optimization of a wide variety of nanomaterials and their workflows. In particular, the Milliron groups has studied the kinetics of CdSe nanocrystal nucleation and growth, has optimized CdSe/CdS nanorod quantum yields, and has tuned the upconversion luminescence of novel lanthanide-doped nanoparticle biological dyes. They anticipate that the robust, flexible, and accessible nature of this automated synthesis platform will foster the rapid discovery of new materials and facilitate a deeper understanding of the complex and rich chemistry of colloidal nanomaterials.

For more information on the Milliron Group’s research, please visit their website.