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Kimberly A. Briggman

Kimberly Briggman is a physical chemist and project leader of the Molecular Applications Project in the Quantum Electronics and Photonics Division. Her work at NIST began in 1999 through a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship to develop and apply nonlinear optical spectroscopic methods to organic and biological interfaces. She recently served as a senior policy analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (July 2009 - January 2011) and as a program analyst in the Program Office of NIST (March 2008 - June 2009).

Her recent research in the Molecular Application Project focuses on using nonlinear optical methods to measure properties of interfaces which may be found at the surfaces of materials, in thin-film systems, or buried in layered materials. An example is the technique of vibrational sum frequency generation (VSFG), in which two laser pulses at different frequencies combine to produce light at their sum frequency with an efficiency that depends on the broken symmetry at the interface. Using femtosecond laser pulses, SFG provides a time-resolved optical diagnostic uniquely sensitive to interface structure. Measurements include spectroscopic characterization of electronic structure at buried epitaxial interfaces, ultrafast monitoring of carrier dynamics at semiconductor interfaces, assessment of the structure and quality of thin films, and vibrationally resonant SFG of organic films such as self-assembled monolayers.

Current research projects include:

Characterization of Phase Transition Temperatures in Supported Bilayer Membranes

Characterizing the Structural Properties of Lipids in the Presence of Small Molecule Drugs and Nanoparticles


Project Leader
Quantum Electronics and Photonics Division
Sources and Detectors Group

Employment History:

1999-present, NIST, Gaithersburg, MD


Ph.D. Physical Chemistry, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL

B.S. Chemistry and Physics, Saint Mary's College, South Bend, IN


Phone: 301-975-2358
Fax: 301-975-6991