Postdoctoral fellows:

Bing Gu (


Bing Gu graduated with a BS degree of Chemical Physics  from University of Science and Technology in 2011, and received a PhD in Theoretical Chemistry from the University of South Carolina  in 2016 under the supervision of Prof. Sophya Garashchuk. Now he joins Dr. Ignacio Franco’s group in University of Rochester from Aug 2016. His research interests include quantum dynamics of complex systems, nuclear quantum effects and high-performance computing. Now he focuses on quantum transport in nanomaterials.


Ph.D. Students:

Zhi Li (

Zhi Li is from China. In 2013, she graduated from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), where she received her B.S. in Physics, specialized in Condensed Matter Physics. As an undergraduate, she gained some experience on stressing TiO2 surface using VASP from Prof. Jin Zhao’s group which lies in Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale. She joined the Franco group in December of 2013, and is developing new computational models to understand single-molecule pulling coupled to transport experiments. 




Antonio Garzón (

Antonio Garzón is from Cali, Colombia. He attended Universidad del Valle in Cali, where he completed his B. S. in Chemistry. As an undergraduate, he gained experience in simulation of classical and quantum dynamics of molecular system. Between 2012-2015 Antonio joined Prof. Carlos Arango’s group in Universidad ICESI through the Young Researcher program, where he worked in coherent control on chemical reactions.  In December of  2015 Antonio joined the Franco group. Currently, he is working in developing scenarios of control based on Stark effect.




Wenxiang Hu (

Wenxiang Hu is from China. In 2013, he graduated from the South China University of Technology with B.E. in Materials Science and Engineering. Then he went to Stony Brook University on beautiful long island to continue into his master studies. There, his research focus was the study of  ferroelectric superlattices. In May 2015, he graduated with a M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering. After several years of experience as an experimentalist in physics and material science, Wen made a huge decision in his life and joined our group. Now, his research is entanglement and decoherence processes in molecules and the properties of matter driven far from equilibrium by non-resonant laser fields.




Leopoldo Mejía Restrepo (

Leopoldo Mejía Restrepo is originally from Medellín, Colombia. He graduated from Universidad de Antioquia where he received his B.S. in Chemistry. As an undergraduate, he gained experience in electronic structure calculations and modelling photo-physical processes. After his participation in the Summer Research Fellowship program of the Department in 2015,  Leopoldo joined the Franco group in the fall of 2016.


Undergraduate Students:


Paweł Wójcik (

Paweł Wójcik is a B.Sc. student from University of Warsaw. He joined us for the summer 2017 as a participant of the Summer Research Fellowship for international students. Pawel has been working on the theory and computation of optical absorption of laser driven materials.





James Savino (

James Savino is from Poughkeepsie, New York.  He’s a senior B.Sc. student from the University of Rochester who is studying chemical engineering.  James began working with the Franco group in Spring 2017, where he has been working on modeling single-molecule pulling experiments with graphene nanoribbons.






Reshmi Dani

Reshmi Dani is a M.Sc. student from IIT-Guwahati visiting for the summer of 2016 as part of the prestigious Summer Research Fellowship program of the Department. Reshmi has been using Hidden Markov Models to unveil single-molecule dynamics.




Alessandro Pirrotta (

Alessandro Pirrotta comes from Bagheria (Palermo) in Italy and began his studies in Chemistry at the University of Palermo, Italy in 2010. Moved to Scotland, in the UK, he obtained his BSc with Honours in Chemistry at the University of Glasgow in 2012. He gained experience in the organic synthesis field in both his Bachelor project and an internship at BASF Ludwigshafen, Germany. Moved to Copenhagen, Denmark, for a MSc in Chemistry, turned his interest towards molecular electronics and he is now a PhD student at the Nano-Science Centre and Department of Chemistry at the University of Copenhagen in Gemma C. Solomon’s research group working on simulating single molecule pulling experiments.  Alessandro collaborates closely with the Franco group in modeling pulling coupled to transport experiments.




Rachel Carey (

Rachel Carey is from East Greenbush, NY.  She attended Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY, where she completed her B.S. in Chemistry and her B.A in Physics.  As an undergraduate, she gained experience in bio-inorganic and materials chemistry.  Rachel joined the Franco group in the fall of 2013.  Her research focused on modeling  single molecule pulling experiments.






Dr. Liping Chem

Dr. Liping Chen (

Dr. Liping Chen is originally from China. She graduated with a BS degree of Chemistry from Wuhan University in 2003, and received a PhD in Physical Chemistry from the Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences (ICCAS) in 2008 (supervisor: Prof. Zhigang Shuai). Then she joined Prof. Qiang Shi’s group at the same institute. In March 2011, she joined the Laboratory for Chemistry of Novel Materials, University of Mons, Belgium. Now she works with Dr. Ignacio Franco in University of Rochester from July 2013. Her research interests include theoretical modeling of electronic structure and carrier mobility in graphene and GNR, quantum dynamics in complex systems, as well as excited state properties and electron processes in organic systems. Now she focuses on quantum transport in nanomaterials. Liping in Google Scholar




Arnab Kar (

Arnab Kar is from Durgapur in India. He attended Chennai Mathematical Institute from 2006 to 2009 and graduated with a bachelors degree in physics. In Fall, 2009 he began his doctoral studies in mathematical physics at the University of Rochester under the supervision of Prof. S. G. Rajeev, where he worked on renormalization in scalar fields. He was awarded a masters degree in physics in 2011. He also received the Agnes M. and George Messersmith Fellowship in 2013, awarded by the University of Rochester. Other than his research, he has taught a course in Nuclear Physics for juniors and seniors at Rochester Institute of Technology in Spring, 2014. Arnab investigates fundamental aspects of electronic decoherence in molecules. He is currently a Research Associate in the Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) of the University of Rochester.  Here is a link to his homepage.





Ulises Torres

Ulises Torres Herrera, Undergraduate Summer Research Fellow, 2015. Currently Ph.D. student at UNAM.

Peter Thayer, M.Sc. Student, 2013-2014