Welcome to professor Xiaodong Xu’s research group in the department of Physics and the department of Materials Science and Engineering at University of Washington. We are interested in understanding the optical, electronic, and quantum properties of novel solid state nanostructures by nanoscale device design, optical spectroscopy, electrical transport, and scanning photocurrent measurements. Please click Research to learn more. We have active research collabrations with the experimental groups of David CobdenAlex Jen, Ying Zheng, David Mandrus and the theoretical groups of Anton AndreevBoris SpivakChuanwei Zhang, Di Xiao and Wang Yao

Recent News



Gen’s paper, Single defect light-emitting diode in a van der Waals heterostructure, is published in Nano Letters. Congrats!

Sanfeng’s work, Multiple hot-carrier collection in photo-excited graphene Moiré superlattices, is published in Science Advances. Congrats!

Jason Ross successfully defended his thesis. The third PhD from the Xu group. Congrats!

Pasqual Rivera is awarded The Hans G. Dehmelt Prize in Experimental Physics. Congrats!

John Schaibley will start his own research group at U. Arizona. Congrats!



Pasqual and Kyle’s work, “Valley-Polarized Exciton Dynamics in a 2D Semicondcutor Heterostructure”, is accepted to Science. Congrats!

Sanfeng is awarded the prestigious Pappalardo Fellowships in MIT Physics. Congradulations!



Mitch’s work. “Excitonic Luminescence Up-Conversion in a 2D Semiconductor”, is accepted to Nature Physics. Congrats!


Helin’s paper, “Photo-Nernst Current in Graphene”, is accepted to Nature Physics. Congrats!


Grant and Mitch successfully defended their thesis! The first two PhD from the Xu group. Congrats!


Single Quantum Emitters in Monolayer Semiconductors” is published in Nature Nanotechnology. This is a collaborated work with Prof. Jianwei Pan’s group.


Our collaborated work with Prof. Fengian Xia, “Highly anisotropic and robust excitons in monolayer black phosphrous“, is published in Nature Nanotechnology.

Kyle’s work, “Electrical control of second-harmonic generation in a WSe2monolayer transistor“, is published in Nature Nanotechnology. Congrats!

John’s work, “Population pulsation resonances of excitons in monolayer MoSe2 with sub 1 µeV linewidths“, is published in Phys. Rev. Lett. Congrats!


Sanfeng’s work, “Monolayer Semiconductor Nanocavity Laser With Ultralow Thresholds” is published in Nature. Congrats!

Natalie Briggs won Mary Gates Research Scholarship. Congrats!

Grant had a successful thesis defense. The first PhD from the Xu group. Congratulations!


Pasqual’s work, “Observation of Long-Lived Interlayer Excitons in Monolayer MoSe2-WSe2 Heterostructures” is published in Nature Communication. Congrats!


Grant’s paper, “Magnetic Control of Valley Pseudospin in Monolayer WSe2 “, is published in Nature Physics. Congratulations!



New website on Materials and Device Beyond Graphene  is launched. This project is funded by AFSOR.


Chunming and Sanfeng’s work, “Lateral heterojunctions within monolayer MoSe2–WSe2 semiconductors“, is published in Nature Materials. Congratulations!

Congratulations to Sanfeng’s “Dehmelt Prize”.


Our review article, “Spin and Pseudospins in Layered Transition Metal Dichalcogenides“, is published in Nature Physics.

Congratulations to Xiaodong’s IUPAP C8 Young Scientist Prizes in Semiconductor Physics!


Congratulations to Xiaodong’s Cottrell Scholar award.


Jason’s paper, “Electrically Tunable Excitonic Light Emitting Diodes based on Monolayer WSe2 p-n Junctions”, is accepted to Nature Nanotechnology. Congratulations!

Sanfeng’s paper, “Control of two-dimensional excitonic light emission via photonic crystal”, is accepted to 2D Materials. Congratulations!


Mitch’s paper, “Spin-Layer Locking Effects in Optical Orientation of Exciton Spin in Bilayer WSe2”, is accepted to Nature Physics. Congratulations!

Congratulations to Gen’s Clean Energy Institute recruiting fellowship and Sanfeng’s CEI Exploratory fellowship.

Congratulations to Pasqual’s GO-MAP GOP Research Assistantship Award.

Mitch’s paper, “Optical generation of excitonic valley coherence in monolayer WSe2”, is accepted to Nature Nanotechnology! Congratulations!

Congratulations to Mitch’s The Miller Physics Scholarship!

Congratulations to Connor’s Anderson Award!

Congratulations to Jason’s NSF graduate fellowship award!

Sanfeng and Chunming’s paper, “Vapor-Solid Growth of High Optical Quality MoS2 Monolayer With Near Unity Valley Polarization“, is accepted to ACS Nano! Congratulations!


Jason and Sanfeng’s paper, “Electrical Control of Neutral and Charged Excitons in a Monolayer Semiconductor” is accepted to Nature Communications! Congratulations!



Sanfeng’s paper “Electrical Tuning of Valley Magnetic Moment via Symmetry Control in Bilayer MoS2” is accepted to Nature Physics. Congratulations!


New paper “Photoresponse of a strongly correlated material determined by scanning photocurrent microscopy” is accepted to Nature Nanotechnology. This is a collaborated work between David Cobden’s group and our group.

We have an opening for a postdoc position. Please check out the recruiting webpage.


Sam Totorica, James Dennis Gallagher, and Daniel McInally graduated.

Congratulations!Xiaodong is awarded the Department of Energy early career award.

Grant won The Hans G. Dehmelt Prize. The purpose of this award is to recognize students in the Department of Physics for outstanding achievements in the area of “table-top” experimental physics. Congratulations!


Sanfeng’s paper, Quantum-Enhanced Tunable Second-Order Optical Nonlinearity in Bilayer Graphene, is published in Nano Letters. Congratulations!


Jason is awarded the prestigious Ford Fellowship. Congratulations!

Sam won “Mary Gates Research Scholarship”. Congratulations!

Xiaodong is awarded NSF Career Award.

Dong and Grant’s paper, Ultrafast Hot-Carrier-Dominated Photocurrent in Graphene is accepted for publication in Nature Nanotechnology. Congratulations!

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