The Team

Dr. Jeffrey Rinehart

Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California, San Diego

Pacific Hall Building Room 4100E

9500 Gilman Drive

La Jolla, CA 92093-0358

Brief Semi-Scientific Biography

Jeff grew up in Oconomowoc, WI, and, deciding it wasn't nearly cold and snowy enough, moved to Ithaca, NY to get his B.A. in Chemistry. While at Cornell, he worked in the lab of Prof. Stephen Lee on characterizing the elusive structures of a series of metal cyanide polymer catalysts using powder x-ray diffraction and density functional theory.

After graduating in 2005, he moved to sunny California to work under Prof. Jeffrey Long at University of California, Berkeley. There, he became fascinated with the electronic structure of the f-elements (lanthanides & actinides) and how this electronic structure could be studied and modified through synthetic molecular chemistry. Of particular interest was how the electronic structure dictated magnetic properties and this became not only the focus of his dissertation work but also the seed of broader questions of how to use molecular magnetism to better understand extended solids and multi-scale interactions.

To learn more about the physics and chemistry beyond the scope of the molecular, Jeff sought out an expert in nanoscale materials. Securing a postdoctoral position in the lab of Prof. Daniel Gamelin at the University of Washington, Jeff moved up the (deceptively long) coast from NorCal to Seattle,  where the fantastic science and people quickly outweighed the rainy and overcast climate. During his time there Jeff worked on a broad range of electronically and magnetically doped colloidal nanocrystalline semiconductors.

In a gambit to avoid “weather" entirely, in 2014 Jeff accepted an assistant professor position in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at at UC San Diego. He is a member of the Materials Science and Engineering Program as well.

Postdoctoral Researchers

Dr. philip bunting

Primary research area: Nanoparticles, Electrical Impedance Spectroscopy, high-tech arts and crafts 

Graduate students

Tara Zand

Primary research area: Nanoparticle synthesis and research

Kyle Kirkpatrick

Primary research area: Magnetic nanoparticle synthesis, spintronics

Angelica Orlova

Primary research area: Lanthanide molecular magnetism

underGraduate students

Maxwell Varley

Primary research area: Lanthanide molecular magnetism


Dr. Maximilian Bernbeck | PhD Student (2023) | Current Position: Postdoctoral Scholar @ Georgia Institute of Technology | Google Scholar || ORCID

Zachary Chavez | M.S. Student (2023) | Current Position: PhD Graduate Student @ Texas A&M | Google Scholar || ORCID

Dr. Benjamin Zhou  |  PhD Student (2022)  |  Current Position: Scientist @ BioLegend  |  Google Scholar  ||  ORCID

Dr. Alex J. Mantanona  |  PhD Student (2022)  | Current Position: Postdoctoral Scholar @ SDSU | Google Scholar  ||  ORCID 

Dr. Vrinda Sant  |  PhD Student (2022), joint with Lal Group  |  Google Scholar  ||  ORCID 

Haemin (Joanne) Oh  |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2022)  |  Current Position: M.S. Student @ UC Los Angeles

McKenna Kennedy | Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2022) | Current Position: EZ Lab

Dr. Jeremy Hilgar  |  PhD Student (2021)  |  Current Position: Scientist @ BioLegend  |  Google Scholar  ||  ORCID 

Catherine Arceo | Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2021) | Current Position: Biochemist @ BioLegend

Ningkai Zheng | Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2021)

Sam Cay |  M.S. Student (2020)  |  Current Position: PhD Student @ UC San Diego  |  ORCID

Dr. Yijun Xie |  PhD Student (2019)  |  Current Position: Associate Professor @ Shanghai University  | yix090 at | Google Scholar  ||  ORCID

Subodh Sonar |  M.S. Student (2019)  |  Current Position: Senior Research Associate @ 10xGenomics  |  Google Scholar  ||  ORCID

Jerry Li |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2019)  |  Current Position: M.D. Student @ University of Glasglow

Lee B. Elmont |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2019)  |  Current Position: Research Associate @ nanoComposix

Jonathan E. Bussing |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2018) | Current Position: Owner @ Bussing Machine

Brandon S. Flores |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2018)  |  Current Position: PhD Student @ University of Wisconsin, Madison

Alexandre Vincent |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2017)  |  Current Position: PhD Student @ University of California, Berkeley

Yoyo Wang |  Undergraduate Student (B.S. 2017)  |  Current Position: PhD Student @ Stanford University

An D. Nguyen  |  M.S. Student (2015)  |  Current Position: Formulation Chemist @ Genentech, San Francisco, CA

Prof. Pius O. Adelani  |  Post-doctoral Researcher (2014-2016)  |  Current Position: Assistant Professor @ St. Mary's University  |  Google Scholar  ||  ORCID  || Academic Website