Assistant Professor

Keshav Dani

kmdani ('at'

I joined OIST as an Asst. Professor in Nov. 2011 after completing a Director’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies at Los Alamos National Laboratory. I graduated from UC Berkeley in 2006 with a PhD in Physics under the supervision of Prof. Daniel Chemla. I obtained a BS from Caltech in Mathematics with a senior thesis in Quantum Information Theory under John Preskill and Hideo Mabuchi. My recent research interests have been in ultrafast metamaterial devices, femtosecond dynamics in graphene and in developing pump-probe techniques from visible to THz.

Keshav Dani


Research Administrator

Yoko Fujitomi


Yoko-san is the Research Administrator of the Dani Unit. She's originally from mainland Japan, and has been soaking in the Okinawan sun for over ten years. She loves yummy food from all over the world, and in between meals she ensures that the Dani Unit functions smoothly and efficiently.

Yoko Fujitomi


Visiting Faculty

Saikat Talapatra (JSPS Fellow)


Bio coming soon.



Eleftheria Kavousanaki

eleftheria.kavousanaki ('at'


I joined OIST and the Femtosecond Spectroscopy Unit in May 2012 with the challenging role to provide theoretical support to the group, given that I am a theorist with expertise mainly on the nonlinear optical properties of semiconductors. Previously I did a postdoc at the University of Konstanz in Germany, in the group of Guido Burkard, where I studied spin blockade and dynamic nuclear polarization in optically excited quantum dots. Before that, I was a postdoc in the group of Shaul Mukamel at University of California, Irvine, where I worked on the two-dimensional spectrocopy of coupled quantum dot structures. I completed my Ph.D. at the University of Crete in Greece (where I'm originally from), in which I studied the ultrafast nonlinear optical response of the quantum Hall system under the guidance of Ilias Perakis. My research interests include linear and nonlinear optical properties of semiconductor nanostructures, ultrafast spin dynamics, electron-phonon and electron-nuclear spin interactions, and excitonic qubits, among others.


Eleftheria Kavousanaki
Peter Hale

peter.hale ('at'


I studied for both my Masters and Ph.D. at the University of Exeter and have a keen interest in the ultrafast optical properties of graphene. By probing with ultrafast pulses in both time-resolved pump-probe spectroscopy and degenerate four-wave mixing, the unusual electronic band structure of graphene can be probed and the interaction between photoexcited charge carriers and the lattice can be investigated. With the 10 fs broadband THz system at OIST, the fundamental physics of various materials and systems can be explored at much lower energies.

Trivia: Rubik's cube fan.

Peter Hale

Michael Man (‘at’


I received both my master and PhD degrees from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST). My main research interest is in the growth and characterization of nanostructures/ultrafilm films using a powerful and versatile technique called low energy electron microscopy and photoemission electron microscopy (LEEM/PEEM). LEEM/PEEM is capable of performing time and spatially resolved structural, electronic and chemical state measurements at spatial resolution down to the nanometer range. With this instrument, for example, we can study the correlation between morphology and band structure in inhomogeneous nanostructures such as in few layer graphene; we can also examine the surface magnetic state and image the dynamics in magnetic domain structure in variety of magnetic nanomaterials. I joined Prof. Dani’s group in OIST in December 2012. Together, we seek to combine my experience in LEEM/PEEM microscopy with the group’s expertise in ultrafast spectroscopy techniques. One of our goals is in the investigation and visualization of the ultrafast dynamics in nanostructures.

Michael Man

Bala Murali Krishna Mariserla

bala.mariserla ('at'


I am from southern part of India. I joined the Femtosecond spectroscopy unit on 13th may 2013. I have nonlinear optics background and my interests include time domain spectroscopy of optical pump-probe and THz. Before joining the group, I worked at Laser lab, University of Hyderabad for my Ph. D program. I received my masters in physics from Andhra University, Visakhapatnam.
At University of Hyderabad, my thesis involved nonlinear optical characterization of Graphene based hybrid materials, biosynthesized silver nanoparticles and organic molecules using nano, pico and femtosecond laser systems for optical limiting application. Good at degenerate four wave mixing, auto-correlation, Z-Scan and pump-probe techniques.


Special Research Students

Athanasios Margiolakis

athanasios ('at'


I completed my BSc (Physics), MSc (Photonics and Microelectronics) at the University of Crete and I worked as a technical student at CERN (LHC - Beam Position Monitoring system). I am currently enrolled in the postgraduate program at the University of Crete under Prof. G. Tsironis and I have been working as a special research student at OIST in Femtosecond Spectroscopy Unit since October 2013. My work is placed both in the Microscopy and High energy Labs and it covers femtosecond spectroscopy techniques and fabrication processes. I am honored to be here and I am motivated by my colleagues and the work environment.


Research Interns

Andrew Winchester



I have joined the Femtosecond Spectroscopy Unit led by Prof. Keshav Dani as a Research Intern for the spring of 2014.  I recently completed my Masters degree in physics from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, following my BS from there as well, and I am currently pursuing options for a PhD program.  My work towards my Masters degree revolved primarily around the synthesis and characterization of 2-dimensional layered materials, in particular boron nitride, graphene, and the molybdenum and tungsten disulfides.  The system developed for use in our group to synthesize these 2-dimensional layered materials was a type of liquid phase exfoliation technique.  I have also worked on developing systems for energy storage through electrochemical double layer capacitors (supercapacitors) with various nanomaterials.  I am hoping to be able to bring the experience I have gained from working with these materials to the Femtosecond Spectroscopy Unit, and to then combine this knowledge with advanced methods of characterization and fabrication, such as Raman Spectroscopy and clean room lithography techniques.


Current OIST Rotation Students

Jui-Yin Lin



Before my enrolling in OIST in 2013, I have withdrawn from a PhD program in early 2012. This is a kind of a reset of my research “career”, if I persisted in scientific pursuit. I did some research in the field of laser and slightly dabbled in HHG (High-order Harmonic Generation) in National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan. As a rotation student in femtosecond spectroscopy unit, I will take the advantage of my previous experience and work on building a high-photon-energy light source within 3 months. It is interesting, although it is a challenge to me.

Simon (Peter) Mekhail 



I graduated with honours from the University of Auckland in New Zealand at the end of 2012. My major was biomedical engineering which involves mostly computational models of human body systems and design of diagnostic tools. I had some experience with femtosecond lasers and their use in neuron imaging, stimulating and cutting neurons. I was excited to hear that the femtosecond unit is working on a project in collaboration with a neuroscience team setting up an in vivo system for stimulating specific neurons in mice brains. By the end of my 3 month rotation in the unit I hope to have setup a system by which I can deliver femtosecond pulsed light to the brain through a fiber.

Previous Group Members

Previous Rotation Students