Who am I? The group leader, advisor, and task master for the Molecular Ferroelectrics Laboratory in the UNL Department of Physics and Astronomy.

For how long? I have been at UNL since Harald V became King of Norway. 

How did I get here? I am from Massachusetts, graduated from Leominster High School (birthplace of John Chapman) and earned a Bachelor of Science in Physics at the University of Lowell (now The University of Massachusetts at Lowell, birthplace of Jack Kerouac). While studying at U. Lowell (go River Hawks), I ventured out of New England for summer undergraduate research experiences in nuclear physics at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee and in superconductivity at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois.
I  headed west to the University of Southern California (go Trojans) where I earned the Ph.D. in Physics for work on photorefractive nonlinear optical materials with Jack Feinberg. I broadened my professional horizons with appointments working on chalcogenide glasses and High-Tc superconductors with Craig Taylor at the University of Utah (go Utes) in Salt Lake City and on organic nonlinear optics with W. E. Moerner at the IBM Almaden Research Center (go Big Blue) in San Jose, California. I  then joined the faculty of the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Nebraska Center for Materials and Nanoscience at the University of Nebraska—Lincoln (go Huskers). 
My research group at UNL has worked on photorefractive nonlinear optical polymers (with Jim Takacs from the Department of Chemistry), ellipsometry (with the J. A. Woollam Company), and ferroelectric materials (with long-time friend and collaborator Vladimir Fridkin of the Russian Academy of Sciences). Currently, we focus on organic ferroelectrics from fundamental studies, to materials discovery, to applications. Here is a selection of recent papers. (click for a full list)
  • Ferroelectricity at the Nanoscale: Basics and Applications, by Fridkin & Ducharme, (Springer, Berlin, 2014) DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-41007-9
  • “Diisopropylammonium Bromide Based Two-Dimensional Ferroelectric Monolayer Molecular Crystal with Large In-Plane Spontaneous Polarization,” Ma, Liang; Jia, Yinglu; Ducharme, Steve; Wang, Jinlan; Zeng, Xiao Cheng, Journal of the American Chemical Society 141 (4), 1452-1456 (2019). DOI: 10.1021/jacs.8b12102 
  • “Polarization canting in ferroelectric diisopropylammonium-halide molecular crystals: a computational first principles study,” Lydie Louis, Krishna Chaitanya Pitlke, Ayana Ghosh, Shashi Poddar, Stephen Ducharme, Serge Nakhmanson, Journal of Materials Chemistry C6, 1143-1152 (2018). DOI: 10.1039/c7tc03732e 
  • “Ferroelectricity and the Phase Transition in Large Area Evaporated Vinylidene Fluoride Oligomer Thin Films,” Keith Foreman, Shashi Poddar, Stephen Ducharme and Shireen Adenwalla, J. Applied Physics121, 194103 (7) (2017). DOI: 10.1063/1.4983820
  • “Fabrication of Ferroelectric polymer nanostructures on flexible substrates by soft-mold reverse nanoimprint lithography,” Jingfeng Song, Haidong Lu, Shumin Li, Li Tan, Alexei Gruverman, Stephen Ducharme, Nanotechnology27, 015302 (9) (2016). DOI: 10.1088/0957-4484/27/1/015302 
  • "Statics and Dynamics of Ferroelectric Domains in Diisopropylammonium Bromide,” Haidong Lu, Tao Li, Shashi Poddar, Om Goit, Alexey Lipatov, Alex Sinitskii, Stephen Ducharme, Alexei Gruverman, Advanced Materials27 (47), 7832-7838 (2015). DOI: 10.1002/adma.201504019 
  • “Polarization Imaging in Ferroelectric Polymer Thin Films by Pyroelectric Scanning Microscopy,” Jingfeng Song, Haidong Lu, Alexei Gruverman, S. Ducharme, Applied Physics Letters104, 192901 (2014).DOI: 10.1063/1.4875960
  • “Measurement of the flexoelectric response in ferroelectric and relaxor polymer thin films,” Shashi Poddar and Stephen Ducharme, Applied Physics Letters103, 202901 (2013). DOI: 10.1063/1.4829622 
  • “Tuning the Energy Level Offset of Donor and Acceptor with Ferroelectric Dipole Layers for Increased Efficiency in Bilayer Organic Photovoltaic Cells,” B. Yang, Y. B. Yuan, S. Poddar, P. Sharma, R. Korlacki, S. Ducharme, A. Gruverman, R. Saraf and J. S. Huang, Advanced Materials24, 1455-60 (2012). DOI: 10.1002/adma.201104509 
  • "Efficiency enhancement in organic solar cells with ferroelectric polymers," Nature Materials, vol. 10, pp. 296-302 (2011) 
  • “Why Ferroelectric Polyvinylidene Fluoride is Special,” M. Poulsen, S. Ducharme,IEEE Transactions on Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation17(4), 1028-35 (2010). DOI: 10.1109/TDEI.2010.5539671 
  • Two-Dimensional Ferroelectric Films,” A. Bune, V. M. Fridkin, S. Ducharme, L. M. Blinov, S. P. Palto, A. Sorokin, S. G. Yudin, A. Zlatkin, Nature391, 874-877 (1998). DOI: 10.1038/36069
Recent teaching activities include undergraduate courses on both Physics and Astronomy. 
Fall 2004 to 2014: Astronomy 103, Descriptive Astronomy
1995 to 2014: Physics 343, Physics of Lasers and Modern Optics 
Fall 2015 to 2018: PHYS 141H, Physics for Life Sciences I (honors section)
Spring 2016 to 2021: PHYS 142H, Physics for Life Sciences II (honors section) 
Department of Physics and Astronomy: Academic planning committee (chair); Instruction Committee (Chair); Undergraduate Committee (member); Advisory Committee (member) 
College of Arts and Sciences: Undergraduate Working Group (member) 
Nebraska Center for Materials and Nanoscience: Outreach and Education Committee (Chair) 
Manuscript Reviewer for numerous high-profile scientific journals 
Proposal Reviewer for several federal agencies and private foundations

Stephen Ducharme, Professor
Department of Physics and Astronomy 
Nebraska Center for Materials and Nanoscience 
310F Jorgensen Hall
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0299
(402) 472-8590; (402) 472-6148 FAX
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Linkedin Profile --  Google Scholar Profile

Steve Ducharme, 2020

Is Harald V still King of Norway? Find out for yourself