Staff Scientist

Timothy A. Strobel

Timothy (Tim) was born in Boulder, CO, at a very early age. With ambitions of becoming a pyrotechnics engineer, he set off to the Colorado School of Mines after graduating high school. This particular field of study was not offered in the curriculum, so he settled for the closest major (Chemical Engineering) and obtained a B.S. in 2004. Staying on at Mines for a Ph.D. (2008), he studied gas hydrates with Prof. E. Dendy Sloan where he developed a passion for novel energy materials, molecular compounds, thermodynamics and spectroscopy.

In 2008 Tim joined the Geophysical Laboratory of the Carnegie Institution of Washington as a Carnegie Postdoctoral Fellow. During his postdoc he became fascinated by high-pressure science. In 2010 he was appointed Research Scientist, then Staff Scientist in 2011. He is trying to make new materials with advanced properties using high- pressure techniques.

Curriculum Vitae

When Tim is not in the lab, he can be found in the mountains, on the water, or above the snow.


Li Zhu (朱黎)

Li Zhu joins the lab from the University of Basel. Li is working on the development of a reaction pathway prediction methods to predict reaction pathways and transition states. He is also interested in crystal structure and transition state predictions under high pressure.

Curriculum Vitae

Wan Si Tang

Wan Si Tang is working to synthesize metastable materials using molecular precursor-based pathways. Prior to GL, Wan Si was a postdoctoral associate at the Department of Material Science and Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park; and a guest researcher at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, with Dr. Terrence J. Udovic from the NIST Center for Neutron Research. Wan Si's research interests also include materials chemistry, energy storage materials, hydrogen storage, electrochemical storage, novel materials, diffraction (neutrons and x-rays/synchrotron), and Rietveld refinements.

Piotr Guńka

Dr. Piotr Guńka will be a Visiting Investigator for the next year from the Warsaw University of Technology. He will be working with Timothy Strobel on hydrogen and helium inclusion compounds of main group elements oxides formed under high pressure. 

Dr. Guńka will study the intermolecular interactions in the compounds and try to understand the dynamics of hydrogen molecules confined in small voids in the compounds. He also will study the effect of temperature on the structures and to get involved in other research projects carried out in Tim's group.

His research interests revolve around structural chemistry involving elements with stereoactive lone electron pairs. The interests have so far been realized by studying arsenic(III) oxide. He's also interested in inorganic chemistry in general, crystallography, bond valence theory and novel definitions of coordination numbers.

Thomas Shiell

Tom is working on the synthesis and characterization of new forms of silicon, specifically, the optical and electrical characterization of a newly developed silicon allotrope, Si24. Tom's research interests include high-pressure materials science and new materials synthesis, and materials characterization.

Research Staff

Javier Rojas

Javier Rojas is a Research Engineer supporting the lab. He creates and modifies lab instruments, keeps track of lab inventories and turns rough ideas into working parts. Rojas holds a Masters in Mechanical Engineering from Florida International University. He has professional experience with microelectronic controls, design optimization, 3D modeling and simulation.


Arani Biswas

Arani is a student from the Badding Group at PSU.



Michael Guerette — 2016-2019

Lead Engineer-Materials Application Engineer at GE.

Gustav Borstad — 2016-2018

Researcher at NSWC.

Matthew Ward — 2015-2018

Postdoc at NRL.

Qianqian Wang — 2015-2018

Professor at Zhengzhou University.

Venkata Bhadram — 2015-2018

Postdoc at IMPMC.

Juli-Anna Dolyniuk — 2017

Haidong Zhang — 2014-2016

Postdoctoral Scholar at GW.

Duck Young Kim — 2014-2015

Staff Scientist at HPSTAR.

Yangzheng Lin — 2013-2016

Huiyang Gou — 2013-2015

Staff Scientist at HPSTAR.

Zhisheng Zhao — 2013-2015

Professor at Yanshan University.

Manuvesh Sangwan — 2013-2014

Research Affiliate at New York State Department of Health.

Stevce Stefanoski — 2013-2015

Assistant Professor at Benedictine University.

Oleksandr Kurakevych — 2011-2013


Haw-Tyng Huang (2016-2019) — Penn State

Postdoctoral Scholar at Stony Brook

Matthew Shu (2018) — Montgomery Blair HS

Eric Hao (2018) — Montgomery Blair HS

Justin Zhang (2018) — Montgomery Blair HS

Alexandra Poltorak (2017-2018) — T.S. Wootton HS

Carnegie Mellon University

Derek Keefer (2013-2016) — Penn State


Anne Davis (2015) — Caltech

PhD University of Chicago

Saelig Khattar (2014) — TJHSST

Cornell University

Olivia Reyes-Becerra (2014) — Stanford

Jackson Holaday (2013 — 2015) — Walt Whitman HS

University of Southern California

Viktor Rozsa (2012) — Hillsdale

PhD University of Chicago

Walker Furguson (2011)

Imperial College, London

Bethany Chidester (2010) — UToledo

PhD University of Chicago