About Us

Welcome to the Ultrafast and Microspectroscopy Laboratories (UML)

Members of the UML participate in a number of collaborative research initiatives, including:

cexs_logoNEW!  The Australian Research Council has just announced the new Centres of Excellence to start in 2017.  UML is a key player in one of these Centres; the ARC Centre of Excellence in Exciton Science.  We will be seeking potential PhD students for 2017 as part of this initiative.  Please register interest for projects associated with this Centre through the website.

The Asian and Oceanian Photochemistry Association conference will be held in Singapore in Dec. 2016:

We have recently established the IRRTF Asian Research Network for Characterising Semi-Conducting Materials – A collaboration between the University of Melbourne and key institutions in China and India. Please see the webpage.

We have also established the International Research Network for Development of Antibiotic Peptides (IRNDAP). See the webpage.

In addition, we have been granted funding through the Australia-Germany Joint Research Cooperation Scheme (UA-DAAD) for a collaboration between the UML and the group of Klaus Boldt at the University of Konstanz, Germany.  Peng Zeng, Kyra Schwarz and Trevor Smith have recently visited Konstanz as part of our UA-DAAD scheme activities.  Klaus Boldt and Florian Enders will visit UML in September.

News and events:

  • Trevor Smith, Kyra Schwarz and David Jones visited Prof. Greg Scholes’ lab in Princeton (September 2016)
  • Trevor Smith visited Garry Rumbles’ lab at NREL (August 2016)
  • Peng Zeng visited Shandong University again (August 2016) to perform some fluorescence up conversion measurements
  • Sreetama Pal from the CCMB, Hyderabad visited UML using our Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging and Evanescent Wave-Induced Fluorescence spectroscopy techniques in August, 2016
  • Peng Zeng recently visited Konstanz to prepare new alloyed semiconductor nanoparticles.
  • Parijat Sardar from the CCMB, Hyderabad visited UML using our Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging and Evanescent Wave-Induced Fluorescencespectroscopy techniques


  • Peng Zeng won the Dalton Transactions sponsored poster prize at the XXVIth IUPAC Symposium on Photochemistry in Osaka, Japan for his poster “Shell Effects on Hole-Coupled Electron Transfer Dynamics in Quasi-Type II CdSe/CdS Quantum Dot-Methyl Vionlogen Complexes”.


  • PhD positions. We are involved in developing super-resolution optical imaging methods, ultrafast laser spectroscopy and time-resolved microscopy. We apply these techniques to study a range of materials from organic photovoltaic materials, semiconductor nanocrystals and some of biological and botanical interest.  Potential students have to apply and qualify through the University’s normal admissions process (see the Graduate School of Science), and are expected to be awarded an appropriate scholarship, which are highly competitive.
  • B.Sc. (Hons) and M.Sc. projects available for 2017

Other Links:

Members of UML also play roles in the following:



UML plays a role in the IUPAC Sub-Committee on Photochemistry, which offers information relating to all aspects of photochemistry (e.g. the Gold Book).

Support for
projects contributing to the advancement of areas of photochemistry is available. See here for a flyer: Poster-IUPAC-Photochemistry-Sub-Committee.


Methods and Applications in Fluorescence:            ATT00001

Trevor Smith is on the editorial board of the IOP journal Methods and Applications in Fluorescence. Published quarterly, Methods and Applications in Fluorescence (MAF) is a new journal with a focus on new developments in (lifetime) spectroscopy, imaging (including microscopy), and probe design, as well as in nano materials (including beads and thin films), optoelectronic components, in data acquisition and processing. (see here for details).  MAF has recently received its first impact factor – it is 2.429.

Medical Photonics:medical_photonics

Trevor is also on the editorial board of the Elsevier journal Medical Photonics (formerly Medical Laser Application)
Optical technologies have become a central part in today’s clinical medicine, both in diagnostics and therapy. Medical reserch as well as clinical routine heavily depends on technical instrumentation. A wide variety of photonic technologies have been developed for clinical monitoring of physiological or pathological parameters. Advanced optical techniques using:

  • Spectroscopic techniques
  • Fluorescence
  • fluorescence lifetime measurements
  • Raman spectroscopy
  • OCT

Advanced Microscopy Facility:

The University of Melbourne’s Advanced Microscopy Facility maintains a state-of-the-art electron and optical microscope facility with the main nodes located at the Bio21 Institute, the School of Botany, the Department of Anatomy and cell Biology and associated specialised light microscopy facilities located at the departments of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and the Florey Neuroscience Institute.

These facilities are under the Biological Optical Microscopy Platform (BOMP). The Delta Vision OMX blaze v4 and the Leica SP5 live cells are now both up and running.


Images courtesy of Dr Paul McMillan