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Professor Clemens Burda

Clemens Burda, PhD

Professor of Chemistry

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Professor Burda’s research interests include femtosecond time-resolved spectroscopy and time-resolved imaging of molecules, semiconductor and metallic nanomaterials, as well as renewable energy materials.

One major research pursuit in the Burda Research Group is the development of imaging modalities to identify early-stage diseases, light-driven therapies, and their photothermal management. A second major thrust is the studies of nanomaterials for energy harvesting, conversion, and storage. His work has been funded by NSF, NIH, DOE, NASA, and industry.

Research Interests

Nanoparticles for Therapeutic Applications

Nanoparticles for Therapeutic Applications refers to using tiny particles, usually on the nanoscale, in medical treatments. Gold nanoparticles, in particular, have received attention as a potential tool in therapeutic applications due to their unique properties, including small size, biocompatibility, and the ability to target specific cells. These properties make gold nanoparticles attractive for use as a drug delivery system. They have led to ongoing research into their potential as a treatment option for various diseases, including cancer. Despite the promise of gold nanoparticles, there are still challenges that need to be addressed, such as stability and toxicity, to ensure their safe and effective use in medical treatments.

Semiconductor Nanomaterials - Going beyond Moore's Law

Semiconductor Nanomaterials is a field that explores the advancement of semiconductor technology beyond the limitations set by Moore's Law. Group II-VI and group-IV materials are commonly used in semiconductor technology and have unique optical and electronic properties. Semiconductor quantum wells and quantum sheets are nanoscale structures made from semiconductors that have unique properties useful for various applications, including optoelectronics, photonics, and quantum computing. These advancements in semiconductor nanomaterials offer a solution for going beyond the limitations set by Moore's Law, allowing for the development of new technologies and expanding the capabilities of microelectronics.

Femtosecond Time-Resolved Photochemistry and Photophysics

Femtosecond Time-Resolved Photochemistry and Photophysics is a field of study that uses femtosecond laser pulses to observe and understand the dynamics of chemical reactions and light-matter interactions on an ultrafast time scale. In this field, photochemistry refers to the study of chemical reactions triggered by light, while photophysics refers to the study of the interactions between light and matter. The femtosecond time resolution enables researchers to observe chemical reactions and photophysical processes as they occur in real-time, providing a complete understanding of these processes and the underlying mechanisms. This information can then be used to develop new technologies and improve existing ones in areas such as renewable energy, medicine, and electronics.

Nanomaterials Synthesis and Characterization for Energy and Environmental Engineering Applications

Nanomaterials Synthesis and Characterization for Energy and Environmental Engineering Applications is a field that explores the use of nanoscale materials in energy and environmental applications. The synthesis and characterization of nanomaterials play a crucial role in their development and utilization. Doped metal oxides and perovskites are examples of nanomaterials attracting attention for their potential use in energy applications, such as solar cells and energy storage devices. 2D materials, such as graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides, have unique mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties that make them promising for various applications, including energy storage and environmental remediation. Through the controlled synthesis and characterization of these nanomaterials, researchers aim to understand their properties and behavior and to develop new materials and technologies for energy and environmental applications.


Dr. Clemens Burda has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers. His h-index is 82. In addition to that, his research has been cited more than 36600 times. 

Redox-Active Eutectic Electrolyte with Viologen and Ferrocene Derivatives for Flow Batteries; Raziyeh Ghahremani, William Dean, Nicholas Sinclair, Xiaochen Shen, Nicholas Starvaggi, Ibrahim Alfurayj, Clemens Burda, Emily Pentzer, Jesse Wainright, Robert Savinell, and Burcu Gurkan; ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces (2023), 15, 1, 1148–1156

Directional damping of plasmons at metal-semiconductor interfaces; Liu, Guoning ; Lou, Yongbing ; Zhao, Yixin ; Burda, Clemens; Accounts of Chemical Research (2022), 55(13), 1845-1856.

Solvation Dynamics of Wet Ethaline: Water is the Magic Component; Alfurayj, Ibrahim; Fraenza, Carla Cecilia; Zhang, Yong; Pandian, Rathiesh; Spittle, Stephanie; Hansen, Bryce; Dean, William; Gurkan, Burcu; Savinell, Robert; Greenbaum, Steve; Maginn Edward; Sangoro, Joshua; Burda, Clemens; Journal of Physical Chemistry B (2021), 125(31), 8888-8901.

Cover Page of Modern Optical Spectroscopy textbook

The 3rd edition of this textbook offers clear explanations of optical spectroscopic phenomena and shows how spectroscopic techniques are used in modern chemistry, biochemistry, and biophysics.

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