Brian Wells, PhD
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Brian Wells, PhD

Assistant Professor

Physics Department

Dana Hall 212


PhD   University of Massachusetts, Lowell   |   MS   University of Massachusetts, Lowell  |   BA   Clark University

Research interests:

Currently I am interested and in two major areas of research.  (1) Computational and theoretical photonics in composites, metamaterials, and multi-scale systems and (2) the investigation of low dimensional magnetic materials, magnetic frustration, and randomized magnetic systems. 

The first area of research includes computational and theoretical photonics and plasmonics in composites, metamaterials, and multi-scale systems using linear algebra solvers such as MATLAB and Finite Element Method (FEM) software.  This consists of developing theories and performing numerical simulations of optical metamaterials for strongly anisotropic composites that primarily include plasmonic nanowire assemblies. This is being done in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.

In addition to strictly computational and theoretical research I have begun establishing a lab to develop and design affordable microwave metamaterials that can be used to investigate cloaking, negatively indexed materials, super-lensing, and lattice distortion effects.  By scaling up the wavelength to the microwave region, it has made this research very practical for an undergraduate institution.  At longer wavelengths the materials can be fabricated using traditional silk printing techniques with conductive ink on choice substrates.  Numerical and theoretical modeling can be applied and tested using experimental results for these new configurations.

For the second major area, we have been looking at the spin-spin interactions for low dimensional frustrated and randomized magnetic systems.  Using the ALPS project (Algorithms and Libraries for Physics Simulations) open source simulation codes for strongly correlated quantum mechanical systems and MATLAB to compute susceptibilities, magnetization, and energy levels for a variety of magnetic configurations which are then compared to quantum Monte Carlo (QMC) and experimental results.  A primary topic of focus has been magnetic frustration for isolated tetrahedral systems.  These results are compared and fit to QMC and experimental data provided by the magneto-Chemistry group at Clark University.

Selected Publications:

  • B. Wells, Zh. A. Kudyshev, N. Litchinitser, V.A. Podolskiy, “Nonlocal Effects In Transition Hyperbolic Metamaterials” ACS Photonics, (2017)
  • S. Peruch, A. Neira, G. A. Wurtz, B. Wells, V. A. Podolskiy, and A.V. Zayats, “Geometry Defines Ultrafast Hot‐Carrier Dynamics and Kerr Nonlinearity in Plasmonic Metamaterial Waveguides and Cavities”. Advanced Optical Materials, (2017), 5(15),
  • P. Ginzburg, D. J. Roth, M.E. Nasir, P. Segovia, A. V. Krasavin, J. Levitt, L. M. Hirvonen, B. M. Wells, K. Suhling, D. Richards, V. A. Podolskiy, and A. V. Zayats, “Spontaneous emission in non-local materials”, Light: Science & Applications, 6, (2017), e16273
  • Brian M. Wells, Pavel Ginzburg, Viktor A. Podolskiy, Anatoly V. Zayats, “Spontaneous Emission in Nonlocal Metamaterials with Spatial Dispersion”, Quantum Plasmonics. Springer International Publishing, (2017), 237-277.
  • Brian M. Wells, Wei Guo,  and Viktor Podolskiy, “Homogenization of nanowire-based composites with anisotropic unit cell and layered substructure”, MRS Communications (2016), 6, 23–29
  • Brian M. Wells, Christopher M. Roberts, and Viktor A. Podolskiy. "Metamaterials-based Salisbury screens with reduced angular sensitivity." Applied Physics Letters 105.16 (2014): 161105.
  • Viktor Podolskiy, Pavel Ginzburg, Brian Wells, Anatoly Zayats, “FD 178: Light emission in nonlocal plasmonic metamaterials”, Faraday Discussions, 2014, 2014
  • Kun-Tong Tsai, Gregory A Wurtz, Jen-You Chu, Tian-You Cheng, Huai-Hsien Wang, Alexey V Krasavin, Jr-Hau He, Brian M Wells, Viktor A Podolskiy, Juen-Kai Wang, Yuh-Lin Wang, Anatoly V Zayats, "Looking into Meta-Atoms of Plasmonic Nanowire Metamaterial." Nano letters 14.9 (2014): 4971-4976.
  • Brian M Wells, Anatoly V Zayats, Viktor A Podolskiy, "Nonlocal optics of plasmonic nanowire metamaterials." Physical Review B 89.3 (2014): 035111.
  • SM Prokes, Orest J Glembocki, JE Livenere, TU Tumkur, JK Kitur, G Zhu, B Wells, VA Podolskiy, MA Noginov, "Hyperbolic and plasmonic properties of Silicon/Ag aligned nanowire arrays." Optics express 21.12 (2013): 14962-14974.
  • Robert T Butcher, Juan J Novoa, Jordi Ribas-Ariño, Anders W Sandvik, Mark M Turnbull, Christopher P Landee, Brian M Wells, Firas F Awwadi, "Strong through-space two-halide magnetic exchange of− 234 K in (2, 5-dimethylpyrazine) copper (ii) bromide." Chemical Communications 11 (2009): 1359-1361.
  • Mark M Turnbull, Christopher P Landee, Brian M Wells, "Magnetic exchange interactions in tetrabromocuprate compounds." Coordination chemistry reviews 249.23 (2005): 2567-2576.
  • Firas F Awwadi, Christopher P Landee, Mark M Turnbull, Brendan Twamley, Brian M Wells, "Low-dimensional quantum magnetic systems: Synthesis, structure and magnetic behavior of (2, 5-dimethylpyrazine) copper (II) chloride and synthesis and magnetic behavior of bis (2, 6-dimethylpyrazine) copper (II) chloride." Polyhedron 24.16 (2005): 2153-2159.
  • Brian M Wells, Christopher P Landee, Mark M Turnbull, Firas F Awwadi, Brendan Twamley, "Design and synthesis of magnetic ladders: structure and magnetic properties of Cu (2, 3-dimethylpyrazine) Br2." Journal of Molecular Catalysis A: Chemical 228.1 (2005): 117-123.