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Stuart Tessmer

Associate Chairperson for Undergraduate Programs & Associate Professor
Condensed Matter Physics - Experimental
Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
567 Wilson Rd., Room 4237
(517) 884-5660
Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
567 Wilson Rd., Room 1312D
(517) 884-5535


B131 Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
(517) 884-5698

1995: Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
1992: M.S., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
1989: B.S., University of Washington

Selected Publications

Scanning probe spectroscopy of individual dopants in silicon, M. Gasseller, M. DeNinno, R. Loo, J. F. Harrison, M. Caymax, S. Rogge and S. H. Tessmer, Nano Letters 11 (12), pp. 5208-5212, 2011.

Scanning-probe spectroscopy of semiconductor donor molecules, I. Kuljanishvili, C. Kayis, J. F. Harrison, C. Piermarocchi, T. A. Kaplan, S. H. Tessmer, L. N. Pfeiffer, K. W. West, Nature Physics 4, 227, 2008.

Local Atomic Structure and Discommensurations in the Charge Density Wave of CeTe3, H. J. Kim, C. D. Malliakas, A. Tomic, S. H. Tessmer, M. G. Kanatzidis, S. J. L. Billinge, Phys. Rev. Lett. 96, 226401, 2006.

Subsurface Charge Accumulation Imaging of a Quantum Hall Liquid, S. H. Tessmer, P. I. Glicofridis, R. C. Ashoori, L. S. Levitov, and M. R. Melloch, Nature 392, 51-54 (1998); Nature 395, 724, 1998.

Probing the Superconducting Proximity Effect in NbSe2 by Scanning Tunneling Microscopy, S. H. Tessmer, M. B. Tarlie, D. J. Van Harlingen, D. L. Maslov, and P. M. Goldbart, Phys. Rev. Lett. 77, 924, 1996.

Select this link for a more complete list of Recent/Selected Publications, including links to preprints

Professional Activities & Interests / Biographical Information

Research Focus

We develop and apply low-temperature scanning probe techniques to study the behavior of charges in nanoscale systems. Areas of interest include nanoelectronics, correlated electron systems, semiconductor defects and interfaces, superconductivity, quantum interference and confinement, and bio-electronics.

An Example

One of our experimental methods is called Charge Imaging, diagram which is based on a charge sensor with a noise level of 0.01 electrons per root Hz. The method has proven to be capable of resolving the quantum structure of electrons trapped on donors at cryogenic temperatures. The schematic shows a recent experiment, published in Nature Physics, which detected individual electrons entering small clusters of Si atoms below the surface of a gallium arsenide semiconductor. Please click on my web page link to see more about this technique and others.

[research group photo] Left: Our research group "inspecting" a helium-3 cryostat. The system reaches a base temperature of 300 mK (that is 1/3 of a degree above absolute zero). The bungee cords are used to dampen vibrations.

Personal Statement

I study the physics of electrons inside nano systems, such as single-atom defects and atomic scale structures. These tiny systems can be imbedded inside metals, semiconductors, and superconductors. To see what the charges do on nanometer length scales, my group develops and applies incredibly sensitive tools called scanning probe microscopes. To see these microscopes in action, and to learn more about the group and current projects, please follow this Nano Probe Microscopy Group link.

I have recently taught senior-level electronics, Physics 440. In this lecture+lab course we start with simple resistors and DC voltage sources and end with computer-designed programmable logic devices. In between we study AC circuits, filters, diodes, transistors, operational amplifiers and a variety of digital circuits.