A.T. Charlie Johnson

A.T. Charlie Johnson
Standing Faculty

Rebecca W. Bushnell Professor of Physics and Astronomy

Research Areas: Condensed Matter

(215) 898-9325, (215) 850-1496


  • Defense Science Study Group 2018-2019
  • Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science 2017
  • Director, Nano/Bio Interface Center (2014-2017)
  • Fellow of the American Physical Society 2011
  • Founding Executive Editorial Board AIP Advances 2010
  • Professor of Physics, University of Pennsylvania (2008-)
  • Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching at Penn 2003
  • Associate Professor of Physics, University of Pennsylvania (2001-2008)
  • David and Lucille Packard Foundation Science and Engineering Fellow 1994-1999
  • At University of Pennsylvania since 1994
  • National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow, National Institute for Standards and Technology (1992-1993)
  • European Union ESPRIT Postdoctoral Fellow, Delft University of Technology (1990-1992)  

Ph.D, Harvard (1990)
B.S., Stanford University (1984) 

Research Interests

My research is focused on the development of new families of single-atomic-layer nanomaterials, building a scientific understanding their physical and chemical properties, and translation of device structures into useful applications. The group synthesizes monolayers of graphene, boron nitride, and a number of the transition metal dichalcogenides. To study the electronic properties and create devices, we use tools in the Quattrone Nanofabrication Facility in Singh Center for Nanotechnology. Our fundamental investigations involve collaboration with groups on campus and globally. For applications, we are particularly interested in new chemical detection technologies where biological molecules are used as chemical recognition elements, for use in disease diagnosis, security, and environmental monitoring. 

Courses Taught

PHYS 150/151

PHYS 170/171

PHYS 230

PHYS 351

PHYS 411/412

PHYS 518


Selected Publications


Scalable aptamer-graphene biosensors for the detection of the HIV drug tenofovir,

Ramya Vishnubhotla, Jinglei Ping, Zhaoli Gao, Abigail Lee*, Olivia Saouaf*, Amey Vrudhula*, A.T. Charlie Johnson, AIP Advances 7, 115111 (2017).


Synthesis and physical properties of phase-engineered transition metal dichalcogenide monolayer heterostructures,

Carl H. Naylor, William M. Parkin, Zhaoli Gao, Joel Berry, Qicheng Zhang, Brandon McClimon, Liang Z Tan, Christopher E. Kehayias, Mengqiang Zhao, Ram S. Gona, Robert W. Carpick, Andrew M. Rappe, David Srolovitz, Marija Drndic, A.T. Charlie Johnson, ACS Nano 11, 8619 – 8627 (2017).


Scalable production of high-sensitivity, label-free DNA biosensors based on back-gated graphene field effect transistors,

Jinglei Ping, Ramya Vishnubhotla, Amey Vrudhula*, and A.T. Charlie Johnson, ACS Nano 10, 8700 – 8704 (2016).


Monolayer 1T’-MoTe2 grown by chemical vapor deposition exhibits a weak antilocalization effect,

Carl H. Naylor, William M. Parkin, Jinglei Ping, Zhaoli Gao, Yu Ren Zhou,* Youngkuk Kim, Frank Streller, Robert W. Carpick, Andrew M. Rappe, Marija Drndić, Jay M. Kikkawa, A. T. Charlie Johnson, Nano Letters 16, 4297-4304 (2016).


Scalable production of molybdenum disulfide-based biosensors,

Carl H. Naylor, Nicholas J. Kybert, Camilla Schneider,* Jin Xi, Gabriela Romero,* Jeffery G. Saven, Renyu Liu, A.T. Charlie Johnson, ACS Nano 10, 6173 – 6179 (2016). 


Biomimetic Chemical Sensors Using Nanoelectronic Readout of Olfactory Receptor Proteins,

B.R. Goldsmith, J. J. Mitala, H. Josue, A. Castro, M. B. Lerner, T. H. Bayburt, S. M. Khamis, R. A. Jones, J. G. Brand, S. G. Sligar, C. W. Luetje, A. Gelperin, P. A. Rhodes, B. M. Disher, A. T. C. Johnson, ACS Nano. 5, 5408-5416 (2011)


Graphene-Protein Biolectronic Devices with Wavelength-Dependent Photoresponse,

Y. Lu, M. B. Lerner, Z. L. Qi, J. J. Mitala, J. H. Lim, B. M. Discher, A. T. C. Johnson, APL (2012)


Growth Mechanism of Hexagonal-Shape Graphene Flakes with Zigzag Edges,

Z. Lou, S. Kim, N. Kawamoto, A. M. Rappe, A. T. C. Johnson, ACS Nano. (2011)


Hybrids of a Geneticall Engineered Antibody and a Carbon Nanotube Transistor for Detection of Prostate Cancer Biomarkers, M. B. Lerner, J. D'Souza, T. Pazina, J. Dailey, B. R. Goldsmith, M. K. Robinson, A. T. C. Johnson, ACS Nano. (2012)



Secondary Appointments:

Electrical and Systems Engineering

Materials Science and Engineering

CV (file)