Our research interests focus on applying and developing transmission electron microscopy techniques to determine the atomic structure of material defects, thus providing insight into observed properties. This is particularly important as electronic devices scale to ever-vanishingly small dimensions when the detailed arrangement of atoms at interfaces begins to critically influence material properties.

Current group

Postdoctoral Researcher
Junghwa Kim

Postdoctoral Researcher
Menglin Zhu

Graduate Researcher
Michael Xu

Graduate Researcher
Colin Gilgenbach

Graduate Researcher
Aaditya Bhat

Graduate Researcher
Bridget Denzer

Graduate Researcher
Bonnie Lin

Graduate Researcher
Sayantan Mondal

Former Students

  • Xi Chen (Thermo Fisher Scientific)
  • Abinash Kumar (Nanospective)
  • Aubrey Penn (MIT.nano)
  • Matt Cabral (University of Rhode Island)
  • Everett Grimley (SAS)
  • Houston Dycus (Evan Analytical Group)
  • Adedapo Oni (Intel Corporation)
  • Bahar M.Alipour (Boston Consulting Group)

Former Postdocs

  • Dennis Kim (UCLA)
  • Matthew Hauwiller (Seagate)
  • Rohan Dhall (Molecular Foundary, LBNL)
  • Weizong Xu (Applied Materials)
  • Xiahan Sang (Wuhan University of Technology)
  • Ryan White (NIST, Boulder, CO)

Former UROP/Visitors

  • Eyosias A Gebremeskel – MIT UROP
  • Gabriela Corea – MIT UROP
  • Anna Kaleta – visiting student (Institute of Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences)
  • Sam Frisone (Uni. of Michigan)

Group leader

Prof. James LeBeau earned his BS in materials science & engineering in 2006 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He then went on to the University of California at Santa Barbara where he earned his PhD in 2010. After graduating, he joined the faculty in the Department of Materials Science & Engineering at NCSU in 2011 and was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor in 2016.  In 2019, he moved the group to MIT. 


  • Microscopy Society of America Burton Medal | 2020
  • Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers | 2019
  • NCSU University Faculty Scholar | 2018
  • NSF CAREER Award | 2014
  • AFOSR Young Investigator | 2014
  • Microbeam Analysis Society K. F. J. Heinrich Award | 2013
  • AReMS Young Investigator Award | 2012
  • Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award | 2011
  • Microbeam Analysis Society Birks Award – Best Contributed Paper at the Microscopy and Microanalysis Meeting 2008 | 2009
  • Microbeam Analysis Society Distinguished Scholar Award | 2008
  • Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need Fellowship | 2007 – 2010
  • Rensselaer Founder’s Award of Excellence | 2004