WilsonLab 2017

Photo - Mark WB WilsonMark uses spectroscopy to explore, understand, and develop excitonic materials for optoelectronic devices. He joined the faculty of the Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto in 2016 and leads the team in the Wilson Lab.

Proudly hailing from Port Colborne, Ontario, he studied at Queen’s University, receiving a B.Sc. (2006, Engineering Physics), a B.A. (2008, History), and an M.Sc. (2008, Eng. Phys.) under the supervision of Prof. James Fraser. He then earned his Ph.D. (2012, Physics) at the University of Cambridge with Prof. Sir Richard Friend, before working as a postdoctoral associate in the Center for Excitonics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, with Professors Moungi Bawendi (Chemistry) and Marc Baldo (Electrical Engineering).

When not doing science, Mark can usually be found cooking, canoe tripping, swing dancing, or arguing about politics…


Philippe grew up near Montréal, Québec, where he also completed his B.Sc. at McGill University while working on assembling photonic metamaterials using viral templates under the supervision of Prof. Amy Blum. Now pursuing his Ph.D. here in Toronto, he is currently working on nanocrystal synthesis, upconversion devices, and electron/exciton transport in films containing quantum dots. Philippe enjoys playing hockey and watching the Montréal Canadiens.

Karen completed her B.Sc. in Chemistry and Math at the University of Toronto. Her main interest is in photochemistry, and she has experience both in nanostructured photocatalysts as well as atmospheric chemistry, though she is now beginning to work on exciton dynamics in her doctorate. Outside of formal studies in chemistry, she has worked with the University of Toronto Aerospace Team to build a three-litre satellite to study the effect of microgravity on C. albicans, and undertaken research at the NASA Astrobiology Institute at the University of Hawaii into the water content of asteroids and comets thought to have been involved in the formation of the solar system. In her spare time, Karen loves to play hockey, and is an avid whitewater canoeist/kayaker and rock climber.

Picture of Philip Sohn with an elephant Team member Philip (the non-French one) was born in Jasper, Alberta but grew up in Toronto. He enjoys all branches of chemistry and will be joining the lab as a Master’s student this fall after working with us as an undergraduate on the methodology of quantum dot synthesis. When he is not on the computer in the office, he can be found on the computer at home. Philip leads our outreach efforts with the Chemistry Olympiad, and he makes a mean macaroon.

Minhal received his Bachelor’s degree in chemical physics from the University of Toronto in 2015 and is now pursuing his Master’s.  His present research interests include the study of the fundamental emission dynamics of individual semiconductor nanocrystals, with a view to applying these insights to further their use in larger devices for photovoltaics or upconversion.  A secondary, recently budding interest has been in coherent control—wherein lasers can be used to control chemical reactions.  In his free time, Minhal enjoys playing rugby, biking, and live music.

Born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, Christian received his B.Sc. in Biochemistry with a minor in Chemistry from the University of Ottawa. He has previously researched the synthesis and characterization of polymer materials for organic thin film transistors (Prof. Benoît Lessard), as well as the synthesis of thienoanthracene derivatives for functionalization as polymer pendant groups (Prof. Jaclyn Brusso). Christian is a lover of all sports, most notably soccer and hockey (like any good Italian-Canadian). When he’s not using spectroscopy to study the energy transfer processes underlying upconversion in molecular and nanomaterial frameworks, he can be found crying over his favourite soccer team not qualifying for the Champions League. Again.

Photo of Ruvim GinzburgRuvim was raised in Westchester, NY, and spent the last two years of high school living in London, UK. He got his B.Sc. (Chemistry) at The University of Chicago, where he studied coherences in FMO and the optical responses from twisted light excitations under Prof. Greg Engel. He is working on building a transient absorption spectrometer and is interested spectroscopy on single quantum dots. His hobbies include choral and a cappella singing, skiing, and hiking, and he is an avid reader.

Titania joined the Wilson group in September 2017 as a Master’s student. She obtained her BSc from the University of British Columbia, where she interned at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), and took part in industrial research towards the development of water-based friction modifiers for train and rail systems. Currently, she is developing her project around the use of emissive gold clusters as triplet state sensitizers for excitonic photon upconversion. When she is not engrossed by physics/chemistry and trying to understand quantum mechanics, she tends to take long, existential walks.

Join the lab! Research positions are available for motivated students, both graduate and undergraduate.

General information for graduate students can be found on the Departmental Website, including the Online Application Form.

WilsonLab 2016: The Originators