Group Members

The Alemán Lab at a Glance

Principal Investigator


Benjamín Alemán

Assistant Professor of Physics

Willamette 178, 541.346.3321

Visiting Scholars

Dr. Viva Horowitz

Assistant Professor of Physics

Hamilton College

Graduate Students


Rudy Resch

Rudy Resch received his BS in Physics from Harvey Mudd College in 2009. His senior thesis was focused on finding a decay mode of an excited charm-strange baryon to a strange baryon and a charmed meson (Xi_c(3080) –> Lambda_0 D). This decay search used data collected by the BaBar experiment. He also did research related to Single Qubit Quantum Secret Sharing using entangled photons. His free time was spent competing in ballroom dance with a nationally ranked formation team and learning lindy hop and blues dancing on the side. After graduation, Rudy spent three years working at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory as part of the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS). This research was focused on building/improving the detector monte carlo, fabricating detectors, and designing a new sensor layout for larger diameter detectors. These larger detectors will be used in a future phase of the experiment. He is now attending the University of Oregon for his PhD in Physics and studying the field emissions and dynamics of NEMS (Nano Electro-Mechanical Systems) using carbon nanotubes.


David Miller

David Miller graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in Fall 2012 with a B.S. in Physics. While there, he worked on a Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay experiment, CUORE, and spent several months on-site at Gran Sasso National Laboratory in Assergi, Italy. In his free time, David likes to enjoy the outdoors and is an avid mountain biker and skier.


Andrew Blaikie

Andrew Blaikie started his trek for a PhD in Physics in Fall 2013. Originally from Michigan, Andrew did his undergraduate work at the College of Wooster, in Wooster Ohio. Previously his research consisted of working on computational and theoretical variations of the two-body problem, using artificial neural networks to predict the outcomes of football games, and spent a summer at the University of Rochester working on the T2K neutrino oscillation experiment. While at Wooster Andrew played the bagpipes in the school pipe band and was able to travel around the states and Scotland through music tours and competitions. For fun he enjoys biking, hiking, yoga, and rock climbing.

Kara Zappitelli

Kara, originally from Chicago, received her B.S. in physics from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in December of 2013. While an undergraduate, she worked extensively in the field of theoretical soft condensed matter. Upon coming to the University of Oregon, however, she has begun experimental work with semiconductor and microfluidic devices and is much happier working in the lab. In her free time, she likes to bask in the glory of the PNW outdoors, travel the world, jam to good music, and watch Blackhawks hockey.

Josh Ziegler

Josh graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 2015 where he numerically studied phase transition in liquid crystals. In the Alemán lab, he studies artificial atom-like defects in the large-bandgap 2D material hexagonal boron nitride and its allotropes. For fun, he likes to spend time with his tiny dog.

Brittany Carter

Brittany earned her BS in Physics at Boston College in 2017. During her undergraduate, she was exposed to a large range of applications for experimental condensed matter research. One of these applications included developing an alternative energy device for a novel design of electrochemical CO2 reduction. She is excited that she will have the opportunity to broaden her outlook within the field of physics and continue to find ways that her research can make a difference, while at the University of Oregon. In her spare time, she enjoys running, rock climbing, hiking, and knitting/crocheting.

Rachael Klaiss

Born and raised in New Jersey, Rachael moved to the west coast in 2013 to attend the University of California, Berkeley. She graduated in 2017 with a BA in Physics and research experience in 2D materials and the optimization of nanofabrication processes for electrical transport measurements. Her current research interests have stayed within the realm of 2D materials but have shifted to the study of how the manipulation of these materials can lead to quantum phenomena. When not in Willamette Hall, she enjoys exploring her newfound appreciation of the outdoors through hiking, climbing, and camping, as well as cultivating her preexisting appreciation of the Willamette Valley food, wine, and brewing culture.


Chase Craig

Skippy Clairmont

Davis Austin

Bri McAllister



Mike Sundvall–Microchip Technology, Inc.

Erika Flockoi–University of Oregon ESPRIT fellow

Kerisha Williams–PhD candidate, Georgia Institute of Technology

Derek Hallman–Intel, Inc.

Andrew Clarke–FEI (Thermo Fisher Scientific), Inc.

Gabriel Dour–Arborist

Brandon Riemer

Emily Hommerding–Microsoft

hannes bend–nomadic artist

Jered Richter–Electro Scientific Industries, Inc.