Rafael Jaramillo’s research combines materials science, solid-state physics, and opto-electronic technologies. The Jaramillo Research Group’s projects address materials synthesis and properties, with an emphasis on making materials and demonstrating functionalities that are useful for microelectronics, integrated photonics, telecommunications, and photovoltaics. Focus areas include processing chalcogenide compound semiconductors, defect studies including persistent photoresponse, optical metrology, phase-change functionality, and controlled oxidation of chalcogenides.


Professor Jaramillo earned a BS and an MS in Applied and Engineering Physics at Cornell University and did his doctoral work in physics at the University of Chicago, receiving his PhD in 2008. He went on to do postdoctoral research at Harvard University and MIT before joining the DMSE faculty in 2015.

Key Publications

Making BaZrS3 chalcogenide perovskite thin films by molecular beam epitaxy

Created high-quality thin films of a new family of semiconductors: chalcogenide perovskites. The films comprise barium, zirconium, and sulfur in a particular structure called perovskite. We used a technique called molecular beam epitaxy to give atomic-level control over crystal growth while producing the films.

Given the broad range of applications for semiconductors, the more choices there are, the better. Chalcogenide perovskites were first developed, in very small quantities, in the 1950s, but their potential as semiconductors has only recently come to light.

The new semiconductors are ultrastable and made with inexpensive, nontoxic raw materials. They could potentially find use in solar cells and lighting.

Awards & Honors

Faculty Early Career Development Award, National Science Foundation
Rosalind Franklin Young Investigator Award, Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory