Group Members


Professor Angus Rockett

ANGUS ROCKETT is a Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Illinois. He is a Past President and a Fellow of the American Vacuum Society and 2012 Program Chair and 2013 Operations Chair of the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference. He was a rotating Research Program Administrator at the Office of Basic Energy Sciences at the U.S. Department of Energy in 2000. He holds a Sc.B. in Physics from Brown University (1980) and a Ph.D. in Materials Science from the University of Illinois (1986). He has won numerous awards for teaching and advising from the College of Engineering at the University of Illinois. His teaching has ranged from introductions to materials engineering for business and engineering students to senior and graduate courses on electronic materials (including a recent book The Materials Science of Semiconductors). His research has concerned ion-assisted growth of semiconductors and fundamental science of growth of materials by molecular beam epitaxy. This was extended to theoretical treatments of the same subject by lattice Monte Carlo and density functional theory methods. At the same time he worked on sputtered hard coatings deposited by reactive magnetron sputtering. He has studied the basic science of solar cell materials and the operation of solar cell devices for 25 years using virtually all of the common materials microchemical and microstructural analysis techniques from SIMS and TEM to STM and photoluminescence. He has also worked on self-assembled nanostructures, MEMS devices, silicide reactions for VLSI contacts, Si-Ge oxidation kinetics for gate dielectrics, superconducting cavity resonators as temperature probes, and optical spectroscopic analysis of combustion. He is an AVS Short Course Instructor for the Photovoltaics and Sputter Deposition of Thin Films short courses. He has also given short courses in fundamentals of thin film solar cells at the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, on characterization of photovoltaic materials at the Materials Research Society, and has given short courses on sputter depostion, thin films and photovoltaics in China, Mexico, Sweden, Israel, Brazil, and elsewhere. He has published over 127 archival papers, over 30 conference papers and has given many invited and plenary talks on subjects related to his research.

Postdoctoral Student(s)

Damon Hebert

B.S.: Macalester College

Research: Electrical Properties of Grain Boundaries in CIS

Graduate Student(s)

Allen Hall

B.S.: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Thesis: Physical Properties of Grain Boundaries in CIS


Dan Heinzel

B.S.: Univeristy of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Research: To build a stochastic monte carlo simulation software package for photovoltaics.

Zhengfeng Yang

B.S.: University of Science and Technology, Beijing, China

Research: Using transition metal nitrides as the back contact materials for CdTe solar cells

Pamela Peña Martin

B.S.: Youngstown State University

Research: Effects of N during CGS growth

Elizabeth Pogue

B.S.: Cornell University

Research: Characterization of reaction kinetics and thermodynamics of CZTSSe solar cell absorber layers.

Visiting Scholar(s)

Esteban Cruz-Hernández


Research: MBE growth on high index substrates; Semiconductor nanostructures

Zhen Zhou

Peking University, China

Research: Materials Science and Characterization of solar cell materials and devices

Yiming Liu

Nankai University, China

Research: Numerical Simulation and Modeling of CIGS Solar Cells

Anthony Tsai

National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan


Andrew Mannix

B.S.: Univeristy of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Research: Study of CdS nucleation on CuInGaSe2 solar cell samples using AFM

Alex Nguyen

B.S.: MSE Spring 2012

Research: Photoluminescence of high-efficiency solar cell devices

Former Group Members

Chuck Mueller

M.S.: UIUC 2005

Currently at Parkland College


Dongxiang Liao

Ph.D.:UIUC 2004

Thesis: 112 Polar Surfaces of CIS

Currently at Molecular Imprints, Inc.

Marie Mayer

B.S.: UIUC May 2007

Research: Photoluminescence and STM of CuInGaSe2

Currently at UC-Berkeley

Jennifer Gaddis

B.S.: UIUC Dec 2007

Research: Photoluminescence of CuInGaSe2

Currently at Yale

Mark Nowakowski

B.S.: UIUC May 2005

Research: Atomic Force Microscopy of Epitaxial CuInSe2 solar cell abosrber layers

Currently at UC-Santa Barbara

Angel Aquino

Ph.D.: UIUC 2012

Thesis: Physical and optoelectronic properties of CuAgInSe2 thin films.

Currently at Intel


Nathan Shewman - Materials Science and Engineering

Sibel Leblebici - Materials Science and Engineering

Matthew Duch -MSE - Spring 07

Stephen Kaun - MSE - Spring 07

Jonathan Lelah -MSE - Summer 07


Professor Angus A. Rockett • Phone: (217) 333-0417 • Fax: (217) 333-2736 • Email: