Faculty Directory
Emily A. Weiss

Professor of Chemistry

Irving M. Klotz Research Professor

(By courtesy) Professor of Materials Science and Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Tech K330
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-491-3095Email Emily Weiss


Weiss Lab


Center for Bio-Inspired Energy Science, a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center (co-PI), 2014 – present

Northwestern Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) (co-PI), 2009 – present


Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, Ph.D. Chemistry,  June 2005

Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, A.B. Chemistry, May 2000


Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, Northwestern University, 2013-present

Irving M. Klotz Research Professor, Department of Chemistry, Northwestern University, 2012-2014

Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry, Northwestern University, 2008-2013

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Harvard University, 2005-2008

Graduate Research Fellow, Northwestern University, 2000-2005

Undergraduate Research Assistant, Princeton University, 1998-2000

Research Interests

We are interested in the fundamental physical chemistry of colloidal semiconductor quantum dots in both the solution and solid phase. In particular, we want to map the surface chemistry of these nanocrystals to their optical and electronic properties. We study these systems with a variety of structural, analytical, optical and electrical methods of characterization, including ultrafast transient absorption and time-resolved photoluminescence, coherent anti-Stokes Raman spectroscopy (CARS), and current-voltage measurements. The goal is to understand the mechanisms by which photoexcited nanostructures dissipate their energy, whether it be radiative or non-radiative decay, energy transfer, or charge transfer, and how we can use organic ligands to control which pathway the system takes.

Significant Recognition

  • Harry Gray Award for Creative Work in Inorganic Chemistry by a Young Investigator, American Chemical Society, 2015
  • Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, The Dreyfus Foundation, 2014
  • Kavli Emerging Leader in Chemistry, American Chemical Society (2013)
  • NU-Argonne Early Career Investigator Award for Energy Research (2011)
  • A.P. Sloan Research Fellowship (2011)
  • Kavli Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, 2011
  • Department of Energy Early Career Research Award (2010)

Selected Publications

  • Malicki, M.; Knowles, K.E.; Weiss, E.A. Gating of Hole Transfer from Photoexcited PbS Quantum Dots to Aminoferrocene by the Ligand Shell of the Dots, Chem. Commun., Special “Emerging Investigators” Issue, “Advance Article”, DOI: 10.1039/C2CC32895J (2012).
  • Tagliazucchi, M.; Amin, V; Schneebeli, S.T.; Stoddart, J.F.; Weiss, E.A. High-contrast photopatterning of photolu­­minescence within quantum dot films through degradation of a charge-transfer quencher, Adv. Mater. (Frontispiece), 24, 3617 – 3621 (2012).
  • McArthur, E.A.; Godbe, J.M.; Tice, D.B.; Weiss, E.A. A Study of the Binding of Cyanine Dyes to Colloidal Quantum Dots using Spectral Signatures of Dye Aggregation, J. Phys. Chem. C, 116, 6136-6142 (2012).
  • Morris-Cohen, A.J.; Vasilenko, V.; Amin, V.A.; Reuter, M.; Weiss, E.A. A Model for Binding of Ligands to Colloidal Quantum Dots with Concentration-Dependent Surface Structure, ACS Nano, 6, 557-565 (2012).
  • Knowles, K.E.; Frederick, M.T.; Tice, D.B.; Morris-Cohen, A.J., Weiss, E.A. Colloidal Quantum Dots: Think Outside the (Particle-in-a-)Box.  J. Phys. Chem. Lett., 3, 18-26 (2012).
  • Frederick, M.T.; Cass, L.C.; Amin, V.A.; Weiss, E.A. A Molecule to Detect and Perturb the Confinement of Charge Carriers in Quantum Dots, Nano Lett., 11, 5455-5460 (2011).
  • Morris-Cohen, A.J.; Frederick, M.T.; Cass, L.C.; Weiss, E.A. Simultaneous Determination of the Adsorption Constant and the  Photoinduced Electron Transfer Rate for a CdS Quantum Dot-Viologen Complex with Transient Absorption Spectroscopy, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 133, 10146–10154 (2011).