Dr. Rudy Schlaf's Group_____________________________________________________

                                       Department of Electrical Engineering - University of South Florida


Last Modified Aug 2013
(c) Rudy Schlaf

  Consulting and Projects Sponsored by Industrial Partners

Our group has an extensive history of collaboration with local and international industrial partners in their research endeavors. Our collaborative projects encompass a wide range of activities ranging from simple surface characterization and work function measurements of production samples to comprehensive multi-year studies on complex materials related phenomena. Our expertise is in the following areas:

  • Investigation of complex and novel materials systems and interfaces: Nano-, organic, and bio-materials are the main focus of our research. Our world-unique electrospray thin film deposition system, which is integrated into our surface science system, enables the investigation of interfaces and multi-layers of macro-molecular materials without interference of contamination. Such experiments can for example answer questions like:
    • What is the interaction between molecular and inorganic materials?
    • Are there chemical reactions at the interface?
    • Is band bending across the interface induced due to the deposited material?
    • Does the molecular material degrade upon deposition?
    • Has the ambient atmosphere an influence on the quality of the interface?
    • What is the electronic structure of the interface? How large are the charge injection barriers?
    • Download our paper on Gaq3 on Mg as an example for such measurements on a reactive interface.
  • Work function measurements (click here for a tutorial on work function measurements):
    Our unique methodology based on low intensity x-ray photoemission spectroscopy (LIXPS) alleviates commonly encountered charging and surface photochemistry issues during work function measurements. In comparison to Kelvin probe measurements, these measurements yield absolute work functions which do not need to be calibrated against a known surface. Our measurement methodology allows
    • to directly correlate morphology and composition with work function
    • to measure the absolute work function on most materials, including UV and x-ray sensitive materials such as ITO or polymers (see our publications (1) (2) on ITO and LIXPS work function measurements).
  • Simple sample characterization with photoemission spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy and scanning electron microscopy.

We offer several modes of interaction with industrial sponsors/partners:

  • Larger projects can be executed through grants given to the university. This is the mostly used mechanism for longer-term interactions for more complex research projects. Typically funding for a graduate student, supplies, instrument time and faculty release are part of a grant budget.
  • For more short term projects, such as simple sample characterization, literature or feasibility studies, we offer consulting services, which can be billed on a per-item basis. A comprehensive report will be provided for each contract, and Dr. Schlaf will be available to discuss results as needed.
  • International sponsors can be accommodated through the consulting mechanism.

Intellectual Property:

  • Like all university employees, Dr. Schlaf and his group are subject to USF policies with regard to intellectual property issues. Non-disclosure/confidentiality agreements are welcomed before initiation of discussions or projects. IP related conditions need to be negotiated on a case by case basis with the USF Patents and Licensing Office. Dr. Schlaf will help coordinating such negotiations.

Contact and inquiries: Please, contact Dr. Schlaf directly via email or phone for inquiries and to discuss your project: