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MSE PhD student in Physics wins Chateaubriand Fellowship

Boise State graduate student Robin McCown has received a Chateaubriand Fellowship to carry out research in France. Robin is a doctoral student in the MSE PhD program who works with Physics & MSE faculty member Dr. Paul Simmonds.

As one of 50 recipients of the Chateaubriand Fellowship, McCown will attend the Université de Montpellier in France, where she will work with world-renowned scientist Eric Tournié. Her award period is from May through September, 2017.

 Robin McCown, center, works on the molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) system with PhD student Christopher Schuck in the lab of faculty advisor Paul Simmonds. 

“I will be working on the growth technique I also am using in my work with Dr. Paul Simmonds at Boise State,” McCown said. “We hope to create new semiconductors involving tensile-strained quantum dots with tunable band gaps that should have unique optical and electronic properties. This will allow the creation of devices with possible applications in many areas including solar technology, quantum computing, infrared sensing and thermoelectrics.”

A quantum dot (or Q-dot) is a nano-sized particle that can be embedded into cells or organisms for various purposes.

“This is a really exciting opportunity for Robin to work with one of the leading groups in the world studying low band gap semiconductors,” said Simmonds. “I have no doubt that the skills and expertise Robin develops in Dr. Tournié’s lab will be enormously beneficial for both her Ph.D. research and her future career.