New MSE Faculty: Simon Billinge

Simon J.L. Billinge joined the Department as a new Professor of Materials Science and Engineering.

Prof. Billinge earned his Ph.D in Materials Science and Engineering from University of Pennsylvania in 1992, following a B.A. at Oxford University. He spent 2 years at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico as a post-doc before joining the faculty as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Michigan State University in 1994. He became Associate professor in 1999 and full professor in 2003. 

In 2008 he took up his current position as Professor of Applied Physics, Applied Mathematics and Materials Science at Columbia University and Senior Scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Prof. Billinge is a fellow of the American Physical Society, a former Sloan Fellow and has earned a number of awards including the J.D. Hanawalt award, University Distinguished Faculty, College of Natural Science Distinguished faculty and the Thomas H. Osgood Undergraduate Teaching Awards. 

His research focuses on the study of local-structure property relationships of disordered crystals and nanocrystals using advanced x-ray and neutron diffraction techniques. In particular he is a leader in the development of the atomic pair distribution function (PDF) method applied to complex materials. These methods are applied to the study of nanoscale structure and its role in the properties of diverse materials of interest, for example, in energy, catalysis, environmental remediation and pharmaceuticals. At Brookhaven the focus is on the role of nanoscale fluctuations in strongly correlated electron materials, including charge localization and nanoscale inhomogeneous electronic states in complex electronic oxides.


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