lab web page
I'm a physicist specializing in condensed-matter experiment, particularly
spins of electrons confined to submicron semiconductor structures. Before
joining Stanford in Fall 2001, I was a Junior Fellow and chocolate
steward in Harvard's Society of Fellows. In Fall 2001 I joined the Stanford Physics
Department as an Assistant Professor (I'm now a tenured Associate
Professor. My lab is located in the Geballe
Lab for Advanced Materials, which brings together physicists, applied
physicists, chemists, materials scientists, and engineers, all with interests
in (you guessed it!) materials.
My wife Ilana Goldhaber-Gordon is a rabbinical student. She is also a biochemist. Her new textbook, Conceptual Biochemistry: Biochemical Approaches to Biological Questions, should be published by University Science Books sometime in the next year. Unlike most biochemistry texts, it will focus on the conceptual underpinnings of chemical reactions, beginning with thermodynamics and kinetics. It will be a good main text for an advanced undergraduate or intro graduate biochem course, or a good intro to the subject for biophysicists.
Ilana and I have a son, Zev (10 years old as of this writing), and a daughter, Shira (7). Unfortunately, I have not gotten around to posting family photos for a long time, so you'll have to be satisfied with really old ones: Zev as a baby, and no Shira. Fortunately, in my totally-biased opinion, Zev was a cute baby. Also, Shira as a baby looked much like Zev did 2.5 years earlier. Zev Goldhaber-Gordon, seen here in the hospital. See pictures from Zev's bris. See some more pictures of Zev at nearly 3 weeks (taken by our friend Matthew Gray). More miscellaneous pictures up through three weeks, some taken by Aunt Sara. Pardon broken links and rotation errors in this one. Zev from Six to Eight Weeks, including the famous "Expressions" series, taken over a period of one minute. Four generations of Goldhaber men. Clockwise from left: Michael, Maurice, Fred, David, and Zev (Photos by Suzan Goldhaber, expert GIMPing by Matthew Gray). A long-awaited series of photos bringing us up to date as of eight years ago (i.e. to Zev's six-month birthday). Note that these are stills captured from digital video, hence they're very lively but not suitable for blowing up to large size. Feeding time at the zoo. Other pictures of Zev at around 8 months. Zev at ten to eleven months, including Yosemite (some taken by Matthew or Carrie Gray).
|About Me: Background|
I grew up on the North shore of Long Island, in the small village of
Setauket (near the State University
of New York, Stony Brook) and attended the excellent public
schools there, including Ward Melville High
School. I spent many summers in beautiful Northern New Mexico,
including several working at Los Alamos
National Lab. During high school, I also spent a year with my
family in Cambridge, England, where I attended fourth form at The Perse School. After high
school, I went to college and graduate school at two very different
institutions in Cambridge, MA:
For more details, check out my CV in pdf
format. For a
reasonably complete list of my publications and citations, see
Google Scholar page. Or
look me up on the Los
Alamos cond-mat preprint archive. My
group website has pdf
copies of most of the papers on its publications page.
|About Me: Professional Interests|
If you're thinking of applying to physics graduate
school, thinking of coming to Stanford, or already at Stanford as an
undergrad or grad student, I'd encourage you to contact me if you find my
work interesting. I may be taking on one or more grad students
next year, and possibly one or more undergrads as well.
To help you reach us, there's a page with group members' names and
contact info, plus a short description of some of our work.
My group's experiments aim to elucidate how electrons in semiconductors behave when they are confined to small "boxes", restricted to discrete quantized states (instead of being able to move freely) in one, two, or even all three spatial dimensions. This emerging field of enquiry is called mesoscopic physics, exploring as it does length scales between the microscopic size of atoms and the macroscopic scale of conveniently-grasped everyday objects. Over the last two decades, mesoscopic physics has forced us to grapple with new ways of thinking about quantum mechanics, measurement, and dephasing, especially for systems of interacting particles.
What about electrons' behavior is different when they are confined? Electrons confined to a plane exhibit a fascinating range of behavior, from the fractional quantum Hall effect at high magnetic field (explained by Stanford's own Bob Laughlin) to a still-mysterious metal-insulator transition as electron density is reduced. Electrons confined to move in a line form a so-called Luttinger liquid. In contrast to the independent behavior of electrons in a familiar Fermi liquid, these electrons have to travel single-file, so the smallest bump in the potential they feel can bring them all to a screeching halt. Finally, electrons can be confined in all three dimensions in a "quantum dot" or "artificial atom". As in a real atom, a small, integer number (1 to 100) of electrons is confined to a small space. Adding or removing an electron (analogous to ionization of an atom) takes energy, as does exciting electrons to higher quantized states. At 10 to 1000 nanometer size, artificial atoms are far larger than real atoms, so their ionization and excitation energies are correspondingly lower; nonetheless, at low temperature the number of electrons is stable, and they remain in their collective ground state.
See my group website for updated info on research plans.
My first student to graduate, Ron Potok, wrote a dissertation about his observation of the 2-channel Kondo effect in a semiconductor nanostructure. In addition to the exotic strongly-correlated electron physics, he also gives some useful info on electrical filtering to achieve ultra-low electron temperature (12 mK). I need to put all the other theses on-line soon.
|About Me: Personal Interests|
|About Me: Family|
My wife Ilana
Goldhaber-Gordon is a rabbinical student. She also has a PhD in
Her scientific interests revolve around protein-DNA interactions. As
mentioned above, she has a new biochemistry textbook coming out.
My parents, Suzan and Fred Goldhaber, still live in Setauket, N.Y. My mother has retired from teaching reading to junior high school students in the public schools, and has more time to garden, travel the world, etc. My father is a Professor at the C.N. Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics at SUNY Stony Brook. For a long time his specialty was magnetic monopoles, as-yet unobserved particles that you'd think you'd get if you cut a bar magnet in half. In reality, you just get two smaller bar magnets. More recently he has become interested in electrons in condensed matter, especially the quantum Hall effects. Fred had a sixtieth birthday symposium at which I had the pleasure of learning about some of his diverse work over the years, as well as presenting some of my own work.
My sister and brother-in-law, Sara and Jeremy Goldhaber-Fiebert, live nearby in Palo Alto. Sara is an anesthesiologist at Stanford, and Jeremy a faculty member in Public Health at Stanford. Sara and Jeremy took some nice pictures during a family trip to eastern Utah in December 2000.
My grandparents all emigrated from Germany in the 1930s, fleeing Hitler. My mother's parents, Eva and Walter Kress, unfortunately died when I was quite young, but I have fond memories of them. Walter worked with industrial diamonds. His workshop in the garage was filled with meticulously-labelled boxes of fantastic parts, right down to "pieces of string too small to use"! My father's parents were both eminent physicists who spent most of their careers at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and then Brookhaven National Laboratory. One of their best-known pieces of work was a collaborative experiment which demonstrated that beta rays are electrons. My grandmother, Gertrude Scharff Goldhaber, died in the 1990s. My grandfather, Maurice Goldhaber, died in 2011 at the age of 100, having gone to the lab every day into his 90s. In his 90s he wrote a paper on how to look in existing data for clues to physics beyond the Standard Model.
Maurice's brother, Gerson Goldhaber, was also a physicist, famous for his role in the discovery of the J/Psi particle. Around 1990, he switched fields to observational cosmology, and he was an important member of the Berkeley-based Supernova Cosmology Project, which discovered an unexpected acceleration of the expansion of the universe, recognized by the Nobel Prize to team leader Saul Perlmutter and two leaders of a competing Harvard-based team. Gerson and his wife Judith collaborated on retelling 100 of Aesop's famous sonnets. The resulting book, Sonnets from Aesop, in which witty and touching sonnets by Judith are paired with Gerson's beautiful paintings, was honored with an IPPY (Independent Publisher Book Award) as one of the ten Outstanding Books of the Year published by an independent press in 2005. It makes a great gift for yourself or a friend, as does their follow-up Sonnets from Genesis. Note: I receive no financial consideration for products I recommend on this page. In fact, when they can easily be located on the web I generally don't even provide an explicit link for ordering. I made an exception for this one since it's both excellent and by a family member. Gerson died in 2010.
Gerson's son Nat Goldhaber is a high-tech entrepreneur and venture capitalist. His wife Marilyn Goldhaber is an epidemiologist and member of the board of directors of the Claremont Canyon Conservancy.
Gerson and Judy's daughter Michaela Goldhaber is a Producer and Director who was one of the leaders of New York's Flying Fig Theater, "dedicated to producing compelling theatrical stories about women's lives, through commissioning new plays by contemporary playwrights and rediscovering plays from the past." Michaela's sister Shaya Goldhaber is a makeup artist who has worked in film, television, and print.
Ilana's parents, Evvy and Robert Gordon, live in Skokie, IL, a suburb of Chicago. Evvy recently finished a career teaching in the local Jewish high school and then as a social worker at The Ark, a charity offering medical, social welfare, legal and similar human services to those in need. Robert is a Professor and (until recently) Head of the Chemistry Department of the University of Illinois, Chicago. His lab studies the physics of simple molecules, and he is a pioneer in the field of coherent control of chemical processes.
Ilana's brother Dov is a computer scientist, focused on theory of cryptography.
Ilana's sister Tamar is a Clinical Psychologist in New York, specializing in cognitive behavioral therapy, a form of psychotherapy which rests on the premise that people can change their feelings by changing the way they think and behave.