Sponsorship of student internships at one of the world’s best labs.


Bekassyl Battalgazy, a BEng in Chemical Engineering student, will be participating in a 3 month internship at The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, starting in May 2019.

The Molecular Foundry ( is a US Department of Energy-funded nanoscience research facility that provides users from around the world with access to cutting-edge expertise and instrumentation in a collaborative, multidisciplinary environment. The internship position, which is sponsored by Dr Vasileios Inglezakis in the Chemical Engineering Department at Nazarbayev University, will be hosted by Dr. Tevye Kuykendall, a Senior Scientific Engineer at The Molecular Foundry.

The research project will focus on the synthesis of 2D transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs). TMDs have received a lot of attention recently, stemming from the discovery of emergent properties when reduced from bulk crystals to 2D layers, such as their transition to direct band gap, emerging charge density waves, high mobility, and valley polarization. Recently we have developed a new technique for synthesizing 2D TMDs through conversion of metal-oxide thin films deposited by atomic layer deposition (ALD). To improve on this, we will explore different precursor compositions and the effect of substrate epitaxy using substrates such as BN or GaN. The research aims to develop a synthetic process, through successive experiments and characterization, to control crystallinity, extent of conversion, and other properties producing high-quality TMD materials. The materials will be characterized by means of optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and other techniques.

It is important to note that it is the 4th year that we have a student at one of the world’s best labs!