Nanoscience and Nanoengineering students and faculty are interviewed about their involvement in the statewide biotechnology research center BioSNTR funded by the National Science Foundation EPSCoR program and the State of South Dakota.

Graduate Education

Nanoscience and Nanoengineering PhD

The Nano Ph.D. program offers a research-intensive degree focused on nanoscience and nanotechnology, with current emphases in nano-electronics and nano-photonics; nano-imaging and bio-nanotechnology; and nano-composites and their applications. A multi-disciplinary core curriculum is taken by students from diverse science and engineering backgrounds. These “core” courses are intended to introduce students to contemporary topics in nanoscience and nanotechnology, and to initiate a cross-disciplinary approach to research and learning. These courses can usually be completed in one, or at most two years. In addition to this core, students are expected to pursue, or take coursework equivalent to, an M.S. degree, in addition to the Nano standard curriculum. Coursework supporting the students research focus are selected in consultation with their dissertation advisor when drafting the student’s program of study (see the Nano PhD program handbook for guidance).


Examples of active research areas are: development of next generation solar cell technologies utilizing semiconductor nanostructures, development of advanced light and electron microscopies for nano-bio-imaging in live cells, mechano-biology of chondrocytes and their signaling pathways, development of nano-scale fluorescent energy transfer based sensors of intra-cellular forces in human epithelial kidney cells, synthesis and characterization of a variety of nanoparticle and nanofiber based nanocomposites, and multiple projects involving nano-scale spectroscopy of plasmonic and nanophotonic systems using ultrafast lasers and state of the art imaging and spectroscopy instrumentation developed by Nano faculty.