Creating Light Where There is Darkness
Vast regions of the spectrum are dark where useful lasers are concerned.  From research x-ray lasers to powerful defense lasers... we want to enable such future light sources via Free Electron Laser (FEL) technology by engineering and demonstrating highly efficient, robust, long-lived photocathodes.
Most lasers output only a selected wavelength or wavelength range. Free Electron Laser (FEL) technology uniquely brings light where there is darkness in the electromagnetic spectrum because an FEL can lase at nearly any wavelength when designed with the correct electron beam energy and magnetic fields. Power also scales well because the laser gain medium is the electron beam. Future applications of FEL research range from aircraft carrier defense to single biomolecule imaging. We aim to enable such efforts by pushing the state of the art in photocathodes critical to FEL advancement. Our work attracts consistent funding, publishes at a competitive pace, and involves students from high school to graduate school in a high degree of experimental autonomy and creativity.
A Nobel Cause
Albert Einstein won his 1921 Nobel Prize for explaining the photoelectric effect using quantization of light energy, but there is still much yet to explain.  Although we know electrons are liberated from their atomic bondage by the photons shining on them, we are just beginning to unravel the fine details of how they are liberated--the first steps toward a predictive theory for the next generation of photocathodes.
Laboratory for Photocathode Research
University of Maryland, College Park
In Pictures
Current Personnel
Research Faculty
Dr. Eric J. Montgomery
Dr. Rami A. Kishek
Advisory Faculty
Visiting Researchers
Graduate Students
Blake Riddick
Undergraduate/HS Students
Alexandra Boldin
Martha Shields
Graduate Students
Nathan A. Moody (Ph.D. ‘06)
Eric J. Montgomery (Ph.D. ‘09)
Matthew J. Virgo (Ph.D. ‘11)
Zhigang Pan (Ph.D. ‘13)
Undergraduate Students
Anne M. Balter ’05-‘06
Christopher Dunay ‘06
Jessica Leung ’07
*Zhigang Pan ‘08
Noah Sennett ‘09
Claire Stortstrom ‘09
*Saara Khan ‘10-’12
Ameerah Jabr-Hamdan ’11
*Alexandra Day ’12
*Winner in IREAP’s TREND competition for best summer research project
High School Students
Noah Sennett ‘07
Max Zeitlin ‘11
Scott Eustice ‘12
Industry Partners
The Laboratory for Photocathode Research at the University of Maryland is funded by the U.S. Office of Naval Research and the U.S. Department of Energy. Past funding has come from the U.S. Joint Technology Office.
Laboratory for Photocathode Research
Room 0138, Energy Research Facility
Bldg. 223 Paint Branch Dr.
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742