Greg Engel

  • Professor in the UChicago Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering and the Department of Chemistry
  • Research and Scholarly Interests: Excited State Dynamics, Quantum Sensing, Quantum Coherence, Spectroscopy, Biophysics
  • Websites: Engel Group
  • Contact: gsengel@uchicago.edu
  • Office Location:
    GCIS E 119

Greg is currently a professor at the University of Chicago in the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering, Department of Chemistry, The James Franck Institute, and The Institute of Biophysical Dynamics, and the College.

His research group focuses on new strategies to observe, measure, and control excited state reactivity and quantum dynamics. Using spectrometers of their own design, the Engel Group explores bio-inspired design principles for steering excitonic transport, open quantum dynamics, and photochemical reaction dynamics. The group’s scientific approach involves parallel efforts in theory, spectroscopy, biophysics, and synthesis. Greg is currently the Director of the NSF QuBBE QLCI, a collaborative effort among 23 PIs to bring quantum sensing to biology and biophysics. He has served as Chair of the ACS Physical Chemistry Division and has served as chair of the ACS Biophysics subdivision. His research has been recognized with the Coblentz Award, National Security Science and Engineering Faculty Fellowship, Vannevar Bush Fellowship, Sloane Fellowship, Searle Scholar Award, Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering, DARPA Young Faculty Award, AFOSR Young Investigator, DTRA Young Investigator, Dreyfus New Faculty Award, and Scientific American’s SciAm 50 Award. Greg’s teaching has been recognized with the Quantrell Award for Undergraduate Teaching and the Camille Dreyfus Teacher/Scholar Award.

Greg Engel was born in Pennsylvania in 1977. He obtained his A.B. from Princeton University in 1999 and his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2004. Working under Prof. James Anderson at Harvard University, Greg designed and built ultrasensitive spectrometers to enable in situ measurements of atmospheric tracers and isotopic fractionation profiles of water vapor in the tropical tropopause transition layer. In 2005, he moved to UC Berkeley as a Miller Fellow to study photosynthetic energy transport. Working with Prof. Graham Fleming, Greg discovered coherent excitonic energy transfer in photosynthesis by observing quantum beating signals with 2D electronic spectroscopy.