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Opportunity at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Theory and Simulation for New-Generation Biomolecular Sensing and Nanotribology


Material Measurement Laboratory, Applied Chemicals and Materials Division

RO# Location
50.64.72.B8320 Boulder, CO

Please note: This Agency only participates in the February and August reviews.


Name E-mail Phone
Smolyanitsky, Alex 303.497.6577


We conduct research at the cutting edge of the intersection of nanomechanics, mesoscale physics, and chemistry in close collaboration between theory and experiments. We are interested in simulating solid-state-biomolecular hybrid devices employing strain and field effects in atomically thin membranes to achieve new-generation high-accuracy biomolecule sensors. The potential applications include DNA and protein sequencing. As part of a separate research direction, we are also interested in simulating friction at the nanoscale, including structural and thermodynamic properties of friction in atomically thin layers and lamellar materials.

We utilize a set of rigorous top-down methods, ranging from analytical theory calculations to large-scale atomistic (large-scale molecular dynamics) and density functional theory calculations. Our special focus is on charge transport and interfacial phenomena.



Paulechka, E, et al: Nucleobase-functionalized graphene nanoribbons for accurate high-speed DNA sequencing. Nanoscale 8: 1861-1867, doi:10.1039/C5NR07061A (2016)

Balijepalli A, et al: Quantifying Short-Lived Events in Multistate Ionic Current Measurements. ACS Nano 8: 1547-1553, doi:10.1021/nn405761y (2014)

Deng Z, Smolyanitsky A, et al: Adhesion-dependent negative friction coefficient on chemically modified graphite at the nanoscale. Nature Materials 11: 1032-1037, doi:10.1038/nmat3452 (2012)


Biosensing; Simulation; Nanotribology; Friction; DNA sequencing; Protein sequencing; Graphene; Nanoelectronics; Theory;


Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral applicants
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