Faculty Directory
Laurence Marks

Professor of Materials Science and Engineering


2220 Campus Drive
Cook Hall 2036
Evanston, IL 60208

Email Laurence Marks


The Marks Research Group


Materials Science and Engineering


PhD Program in Applied Physics

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Ph.D. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England

Research student, Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge, England

B.A. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England

Research Interests

Professor Laurence D. Marks, Ph.D. is a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Northwestern University. His most highly cited work is the discovery of a type of nanoparticle which has become known as the Marks Decahedron. He pioneered the use of HREM to study the structure of nanoparticles, the use of direct methods for surfaces with either electron or x-ray diffraction data, in-situ methods for tribology inside electron microscopes, fast methods of obtaining optical and structural measurements from single nanoparticles and most recently a new class of fixed-point algorithms for DFT calculations. His research interests include transmission electron microscopy, density functional theory methods, direct methods for inversion of diffraction data, surface science particularly of oxides, tribology and hip replacements as well as nanoparticle structure, growth and corrosion, with a recent addition of flexoelectricity and triboelectricity. He is the author or co-author of more than 400 refereed publications. He tries to teach his students to follow the science, not the electron.

Significant Recognition

  • ICSOS Surface Structure Prize, 2017
  • Warren Award of the American Crystallographic Association, 2015
  • Astor Lectureship, 2015
  • Sloan Foundation Fellowship, 1987
  • Burton Medal from the Electron Microscopy Society of America for achievements in electron microscopy by a young researcher, 1989
  • Fellow, American Physical Society, 2002

Selected Publications

1.          Does Flexoelectricity Drive Triboelectricity? Mizzi, C.A., A.Y.W. Lin, and L.D. Marks, Phys Rev Lett, 2019. 123(11), 116103             http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.123.116103

2.          How heteroepitaxy occurs on strontium titanate. Cook, S., K. Letchworth-Weaver, I.C. Tung, T.K. Andersen, H. Hong, L.D. Marks, and D.D. Fong, Sci Adv, 2019. 5(4), eaav0764             http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aav0764

3.          Nonequilibrium Solute Capture in Passivating Oxide Films. Yu, X.X., A. Gulec, Q. Sherman, K.L. Cwalina, J.R. Scully, J.H. Perepezko, P.W. Voorhees, and L.D. Marks, Phys Rev Lett, 2018. 121(14), 145701             http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.145701

4.          Competitive Chloride Chemisorption Disrupts Hydrogen Bonding Networks: DFT, Crystallography, Thermodynamics, and Morphological Consequences. Marks, L.D., Corrosion, 2018. 74(3), 295-311             http://dx.doi.org/10.5006/2555

5.          Kinetic Growth Regimes of Hydrothermally Synthesized Potassium Tantalate Nanoparticles. Ly, T., J. Wen, and L.D. Marks, Nano Lett, 2018. 18(8), 5186-5191             http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.8b02123

6.          Direct Observation of Large Flexoelectric Bending at the Nanoscale in Lanthanide Scandates. Koirala, P., C.A. Mizzi, and L.D. Marks, Nano Lett, 2018. 18(6), 3850-3856             http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.8b01126

7.          Blaha, P., K. Schwarz, G.K.H. Madsen, D. Kvasnicka, J. Luitz, R. Laskowsji, F. Tran, and L.D. Marks, An Augmented Plane Wave + Local Orbitals Program for Calculating Crystal Properties. 2018, Techn. Universitat Wien, Austria. ISBN 3-9501031-1-2 http://www.wien2k.at

8.          Pauling's rules for oxide surfaces. Andersen, T.K., D.D. Fong, and L.D. Marks, Surface Science Reports, 2018. 73(5), 213-232             http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.surfrep.2018.08.001