Bulk Synthesis Solicitation


The 2D Crystal Consortium (2DCC) – Materials Innovation Platform is seeking research proposals from potential users interested in accessing the facilities of the 2DCC for the bulk growth and characterization of layered chalcogenide crystals to support research related to 2D materials and devices for next generation electronics.  Projects are expected to be aimed at the synthesis of new phases, compositions, doped crystals, solid solutions, and alloys that are not commercially available and that support projects with a compelling scientific or technological focus. Research projects should be aimed at using the facilities and staff expertise of the 2DCC for the preparation of bulk layered chalcogenides with novel electronic, optical, thermal, catalytic, magnetic, mechanical, and other properties. Chalcogenides are the primary focus of this call, but limited (< 10%) equipment time may be allocated for synergistic research on non-chalcogenide materials.  Projects that are aimed at understanding the fundamentals of bulk growth of chalcogenide crystals by combining synthesis, characterization and theory/simulation are encouraged. Proposals that combine research efforts and use 2DCC facilities not only in bulk synthesis but also in thin films and/or theory/simulation are also encouraged. 

2DCC Facilities Include:

  1. Bulk Crystal Growth: vertical Bridgman (3-zone), chemical vapor transport (4 zone), compounding furnace, sealing/loading station
  2. Synthesis and In situ Characterization of Thin Films: MOCVD, Multi-module MBE, and Hybrid MBE (contact Joan Redwing for updated availability of new equipment)
  3. Theory/Simulation: Combined capabilities of the 2DCC theory team and the technical capabilities of the Materials Computation Center and the Institute for CyberScience – Advanced Cyberinfrastructure at Penn State

Leveraged resources also available to support research of 2DCC users:
Materials Characterization Lab – Advanced characterization of Thin Films and Bulk Crystals
Nanofabrication Lab – Development and fabrication of novel devices.

Interested researchers are strongly encouraged to discuss proposal concepts with 2DCC personnel prior to proposal preparation and submission to clarify any questions about the mission, scope, methodology and facilities of the 2DCC.


Joan Redwing – Platform Director & Synthesis Lead; jmr31@psu.edu
Thomas Mallouk – Bulk Synthesis and Exfoliation; tem5@psu.edu
David Snyder – Bulk Synthesis; dws13@psu.edu
Joshua Robinson – Director of User Programs; jar403@psu.edu


Extended to 11:59 p.m. submitter's local time on July 14, 2017.

User research project proposals will be reviewed externally by the scientific and technical community at large and are evaluated on intellectual merit and broader impacts.
Submit your research project proposal materials online under the Research Project category here: Proposal Submission Portal

Required Proposal Materials

  • Cover Page – Automatically generated from information the user provides in the online proposal submission portal
  • Proposal – File upload of one PDF arranged in the following order
    • 3 page Project Description including broader impacts of the work
    • References (no page limit)
    • 2 page NSF-format Biographical sketch of all project personnel, except students (Template)

Proposals should follow standard NSF GPG format requirements for margins and font size.

Three-Page Project Description Content – The project description section should answer the following questions:

  • What is the scientific significance and long-term impact of the project?
  • How does your project align with the goals of the 2DCC in chalcogenides for next generation electronics?
  • What 2DCC resources and expertise would be used?
  • How does the project make use of the unique capabilities of the 2DCC?
  • How will the users’ expertise contribute to success?
  • What work will be performed at your home institution(s) to support the proposed work?
  • What are the broader impacts of the proposed work?

Next Steps:

For successful proposals, the specific resources and logistical arrangements needed to achieve project goals will be defined in a consultation with the user(s), the 2DCC executive leadership team, and appropriate affiliate faculty if your project has been given priority for support.

Financial support for user projects is limited to activities that occur within the 2DCC facility and related user facilities at Penn State.  Users are encouraged to visit the 2DCC facility to work directly with 2DCC staff on their projects or they may choose instead to interact remotely with 2DCC staff members.  Resources that may be requested for projects include:

  • Access to (and support of) 2DCC staff time for materials synthesis, characterization and/or theory/simulation
  • Usage of 2DCC synthesis equipment or computational resources.
  • Usage of relevant characterization and processing/nanofabrication equipment (in support of synthesis projects) that are available at the Penn State Materials Characterization Lab (MCL) or Nanofabrication Facility.
  • Support for travel to the 2DCC facility to enable on-site collaboration for proposals that include users from minority-serving and/or predominantly undergraduate institutions.

The 2DCC is committed to serving a broad and diverse user base in 2D materials synthesis and fostering the development of the 2D synthesis community in the U.S. As such, we welcome user proposals from faculty, professional staff, and postdoctoral researchers at Ph.D.-granting universities, undergraduate-serving institutions, companies, research institutes, and national labs. Users internal to Penn State can also apply through this program, including affiliate faculty.