Photo Dec 2014(Photo Dec 2014)

Peter D. Persans

Professor of  Physics, Applied Physics, and Astronomy
and Center for Integrated Electronics

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 110 Eighth Street, Troy, NY 12180-3590
  Telephone: 518-276-2934
FAX: 518-276-6680
email: persap(at)

Office: Science Center, Room 1C10


REU in Physics, Applied Physics, and Astronomy at Rensselaer – Application Link

The Department of Physics, Applied Physics, and Astronomy at Rensselaer Polytechnic will host an NSF-sponsored Research Experience for Undergraduates program in summer 2021. A brochure with further information can be found here. The first round of admissions will go out on March 1 but new applications will be considered until all positions are filled.  All undergraduate students are eligible.  Students from schools with limited opportunity to perform research or who are members of an underrepresented group in Physics are strongly encouraged to apply. Potential research projects cover a wide range of sub-fields including Computational Physics, Geophysics, Complex Systems, Biophysics, Galactic Structure, Particle Astrophysics, Condensed Matter Physics, and Energy Conversion.   For inquiries contact us at


Fall 2020
            PHYS 1200 - Physics 2 - Electromagnetics and Quantum Physics
            PHYS 4960 - Physics Mentoring
Spring 2021
            PHYS 1200 - Physics 2 - Electromagnetics and Quantum Physics
            PHYS 2220 - Quantum Physics 2

Physics Advising – Presentations

Finding Your Way Through Physics at Rensselaer

Preparation for Graduate School and the Physics GRE

Education and Employment

BS Physics -1975 -Polytechnic Institute of New York
PhD Physics -1982 -University of Chicago (Thesis advisor: H. Fritzsche)
Research Physicist -Exxon Corporate Research (1981-1986)
Physics Faculty -Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (1986-present)

Research interests and expertise:

o   Optoelectronic and structural properties of amorphous, nanocrystalline, and quantum dot materials

o   Optoelectronic devices and solar cells

o   Physics Educational Development

o   I-PERSIST First Semester Mentoring Program

o   Physics Summer BRIDGE Program

o   Remote Access Laboratory Experiments - Real-time access to introductory Physics experiments

Selected Publications: (for a full publication list click here)


Amorphous semiconductors, Semiconductor quantum dots, and nanostructures


Thin Films, and Interfaces