Benjamin Palmer

Originally from Wales, I studied chemistry in Cardiff University and continued there for a PhD with Prof. Kenneth Harris - a leading scholar in solid-state organic chemistry. During my PhD I became fascinated by the symmetric beauty of crystals, a subject which, in various guises, has captivated me ever since. My PhD work explored how molecular crystals interact with polarized X-rays, and led to the development of the X-ray Birefringence Imaging technique.

 

Following a short stint as a Research Assistant in Swansea University, in 2014 I joined the group of Profs. Lia Addadi and Steve Weiner in the Weizmann Institute. Addadi and Weiner are pioneers of the field of Biomineralization and performed seminal work on optically functional crystalline materials in organisms. During my postdoc I examined this unexplored world of crystals, light and biology. My work led to the characterization of a previously-unidentified biogenic crystal, and suggested that there are likely many more such materials out there to be discovered.

In June 2019 I started as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry in Ben-Gurion University. My group explores the field of 'Organic Biomineralization'. We are interested in how organisms make and use organic crystals to manipulate light for different optical functions, particularly in visual systems. 

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR

      bpalmer@bgu.ac.il

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Gan Zhang, PhD

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH FELLOW

      ganzhang@ymail.com

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Keshet Shavit

BSc STUDENT (Chem)

      

Irena Gertsberg, PhD

Avital Wagner

PhD STUDENT (Chem)

avitalwa@post.bgu.ac.il

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Noam Pinsk

BSc STUDENT (Chem Eng/Chem)

      

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Eynav Livne

BSc STUDENT (Chem)

      

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Geetha Bolla, PhD

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH FELLOW

      bollag@post.bgu.ac.il

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH FELLOW

      wenq@post.bgu.ac.il

Qiang Wen, PhD