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Blaise J Thompson

725 W Washington Ave. Apt. 306
Madison, WI 53715

1 424 225 2493


University of Wisconsin-Madison 2011-2018

PhD, Analytical Chemistry

Bates College 2007-2011

BS: Chemistry
Minor: Philosophy
Concentration: Applying Mathematical Methods


Instrumentation Technologist 2018-Present

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Ultrafast Materials Spectroscopy 2011-2018

John C. Wright Group
  • Used ultrafast spectroscopy to research semiconductor systems, with a focus on solar energy candidates.
  • Designed and constructed software tools to collect and process multidmensional spectra.
  • Designed and constructed optomechanical and electronic hardware.
  • Developed novel algorithms to streamline optical paramteric amplifier tuning procedures.
  • Maintained and conducted experiments on a custom ultrafast laser system.
  • Contributed to general-purpose multidimensional spectra modeling software.
  • Taught fellow students how to use instrumentation.
For more information, see my dissertation: Development of Frequency Domain Multidimensional Spectroscopy with Applications in Semiconductor Photophysics

Microscopy, AFM, Plasmonics 2009-2011

Matthew J. Cote Group
  • Designed and constructed a combined total internal reflection / atomic force microscope.
  • Coordinated work with my advisor and other staff and faculty.
For more information, see my thesis: Investigating Plasmons with Total Internal Reflection Microscopy

Neuroscience 2008

Michael Dailey Group
  • Dissected and prepared mouse brain samples for in-vivo microgial imaging studies.
  • Trained to utilize confocal microscopy setup

Epiginetics 2007

Peter L. Nagy Group
  • Designed and created plasmid, taught myself techniques from reference materials.
  • Inserted plasmid into yeast.


  1. Three Dimensional Triply Resonant Sum Frequency Spectroscopy Revealing Vibronic Coupling in Cobalamins: Toward a Probe of Reaction Coordinates

    Handali, J. D.; Sunden, K. F.; Thompson, B. J.; Neff-Mallon, N. A.; Kaufman, E. M.; Brunold, T. C.; and Wright, J. C.;
    The Journal of Physical Chemistry A (2018)
    • For the first time, achieved true three-dimensional frequency TRSF spectroscopy.
    • Analyzed results carefully in context of prior spectroscopic work on Cobalamins.
    • Raw data and code freely available on the open science framework.
  2. Resonant Third-Order Susceptibility of PbSe Quantum Dots Determined by Standard Dilution and Transient Grating Spectroscopy

    Kohler D. D.; Thompson, B. J.; and Wright, J. C.;
    The Journal of Physical Chemistry C (2018)
  3. WrightSim: Using PyCUDA to Simulate Multidimensional Spectra

    Sunden, K. F.; Thompson, B. J.; and Wright, J. C.;
    Proceedings of the 17th Python in Science Conference (2018)
    • Developed unique Python package to simulate multidimensional spectra.
    • First openly licensed package of its kind.
  4. Exploring Electronic Structure and Order in Polymers via Single-Particle Microresonantor Spectroscopy

    Horak, E. H.; Rea, M. T.; Heylman, K. D.; Gelbwaser-Klimovsky, D.; Saikin, S. K.; Thompson, B. J.; Kohler, D. D.; Knapper, K. A.; Wei, W.; Pan, F.; Gopalan, P.; Wright, J. C.; Aspuru-Guzik, A.; and Goldsmith, Randall H.
    Nano Letters (2018)
    • Performed three-pulse photon echo experiments on a conductive polymer.
    • Developed model and performed lineshape analysis to interrogate ultrafast processes in the material.
    • Raw data and code freely available on the open science framework.
  5. Frequency-domain coherent multidimensional spectroscopy when dephasing rivals pulsewidth: Disentangling material and instrument response

    Kohler, D. D.; Thompson, B. J.; and Wright, J. C.
    The Journal of Chemical Physics (2017)
    • Applied numerical model to simple system to explore artifacts of mixed-domain nonlinear spectroscopy
    • Defined new strategies to extract desired information despite these artifacts.
    • Raw data and code freely avaliable on the open science framework.
  6. Measurement of Ultrafast Excitonic Dynamics of Few-Layer MoS2 Using State-Selective Coherent Multidimensional Spectroscopy

    Czech, K. J.; Thompson, B. J.; Kain, S.; Ding, Q.; Shearer, M.; Hamers, R. J.; Jin, S.; and Wright, J. C.
    ACS Nano (2015)
    • Analyzed three-dimensional frequency-frequency-delay transient grating data.
  7. Solution Growth of Single Crystal Methylammonium Lead Halide Perovskite Nanostructures for Optoelectronic and Photovoltaic Applications

    Fu, J.; Meng, F.; Rowley, M. B.; Thompson, B. J.; Shearer, M. J.; Ma, D.; Hamers, R. J.; Wright, J. C.; and Jin, S.
    Journal of the Americal Chemical Society (2015)
    • Performed transient reflectance spectroscopy.
  8. Ionization of High-Density Deep Donor Defect States Explains the Low Photovoltage of Iron Pyrite Single Crystals

    Caban-Acevedo, M.; Kaiser, N. S.; English, C. R.; Liang, D.; Thompson, B. J.; Chen, H.-E.; Czech, K. C.; Wright, J. C.; Hamers, R. J.; and Jin, S.
    Journal of the Americal Chemical Society (2014)
    • Performed transient reflectance spectroscopy.


  1. Nonlinear Multidimensional Spectroscopy

    Chaos and Complexity Seminar (2017)
    Madison, WI USA
  2. A Robust, Fully Automated Algorithm to Collect High Quality OPA Tuning Curves

    Conference for Coherent Multidimensional Spectroscopy (2016)
    Groningen, the Netherlands
  3. Utilizing Coherent Multidimensional Spectroscopy to Investigate Nanomaterials for Solar Energy Generation

    Midwest Universities Analytical Chemistry Conference (2012)
    Madison, WI USA
  4. Spectroscopic Investigation of Plasmonic Nanoparticles

    Bates College Mount David Summit (2011)
    Lewiston, ME USA


Creator: WrightTools 2014-Present

Tools for loading, processing, and plotting multidimensional spectroscopy data.
  • Single processing toolkit for wide variety of instrumental data, built to be extensible as more data-types become relevant.
  • Offers specialized interactions, such as transformations, that are particularly suited to multidmensional spectroscopy.
  • Online documentation through Spinx and ReadTheDocs.
  • Project managed with several graduate students and undergraduate contributors, active issue tracking, version control and an extensive testing suite.
  • Central package used as a data management pipeline by other packages simulating and acquiring multidimensional spectra.

Creator: PyCMDS 2015-Present

Software for controlling hardware and collecting data in the Wright Group.
  • Supplies modular hardware control, calibration, and orchestration during complex, long-lasting CMDS experiments.
  • Provides interface to optomechanical hardware from a variety of manufacturers, including National Instruments, Thorlabs, Horiba, Newport, and Aerotech. Also controls hardware built and customized in-house.
  • Focuses on seamless user experience with integrations such as automatic data backup and notification via Slack.
  • In conjunction with contemporaneous hardware improvements, algorithmic improvements in acquisition strategy increased scan rate by up to two orders of magnitude over prevous software.

Co-creator: WrightSim 2017-Present

Efficient, flexable simulation package for multidimensional spectroscopy.
  • Uses Liouville's theorem to numerically simulate nonlinear spectroscopy.
  • See also NISE, the predecessor of WrightSim.

Contributor: osfclient 2017

A Python library and command-line client for file storage within the Open Science Framework.
  • Added Windows functionality, assisted in various debugging efforts in early version of osfcli.
  • Distribute on conda-forge.


Fundamentals of Analytical Science
(Quantitative Analysis)

Teaching assistant, 1 semester.
  • Led laboratory and discussion sections for honors section.
  • Prepared worksheets and homework keys.
  • Contributed to staff notes for future teaching assistants.

Graduate Chemical Instrumentation:
Design & Control

Teaching assistant, 1 semester.
  • Led laboratory section of course.
  • Introduced graduate students to basic electronics skills such as breadboarding, oscilliscope usage, component choice, and enclosure design / construction.
  • Assisted students during extended independent instrument design and construction.

Graduate Instrumental Analysis 2012, 2015

Teaching assistant, 2 semesters.
  • Led laboratory section of course.
  • Prepared homework assignments and led homework review sessions.
  • Lectured in professor's absence.
  • Switched course from mathcad to Python using Jupyter notebooks, introducing first-year graduate students to script-based programming.
  • Received James W. Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award.

Undergraduate Research Mentor 2012-2013, 2015-2017

6 semesters.
  • Designed appropriate experiments that were complementary to my own research.
  • Introduced undergraduates to spectroscopy, programming, and instrument design.
  • Advised students in coursework and future directions.

General Chemistry II 2011-2012

Teaching assistant, 2 semesters.
  • Coordinated two sections: total of ~50 students in each semester.
  • Led laboratory section of course.
  • Designed and led weekly discussion sections.

General Chemistry I 2010-2011

Peer science leader, 2 semesters.
  • Designed and class-wide review sessions.
  • Assisted in first trials of new peer leadership program at Bates College.
  • Attended regular meetings to share teaching strategies with other peer leaders.


Roger Carlson Award 2017

Awarded by the University of Wisconsin Chemistry department for excellence in research.

James W. Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award 2016

Selected by University of Wisconsin Chemistry students and faculty as one of the most outstanding teaching assistants of the 2015-2016 school year.

Rodney F. Johonnot Graduate Award 2011

Selected by Bates College faculty as most deserving of aid in furthering his or her studies in professonal or postgraduate work.

Bates College Key 2011

Awarded by Bates College faculty and staff to 20 students in each graduating class based on academic standing, character, campus and community service, leadership, and future promise.


Plasma Group Python Introduction 2017

  • Helped introduce a group of faculty and gradute students to Python for data analysis.
  • Created lesson sections and chose topics.
  • Group was switching to Python from IDL.
  • Introduction consisted of weekly meetings across several months.

Pre-college Enrichment Opportunity Program for Learning Excellence (PEOPLE) 2017

  • Taught disadvantaged high school students about electronics, science, and what it is like to be an analytical chemist.

Wisconsin Middle School Science Bowl 2017

Scientific Judge
  • Judged middle school students in statewide science-knowledge competition.
  • Winning team proceeded to national competition.

McElvain Committee 2013-2014

  • Graduate student committee to choose seminar speakers.

OutFront 2009-2010

  • Held weekly meetings, organized social and political events.
  • For the first time, organized and executed collaborative events with other local LGBTQ groups in Lewiston ME.

Freewill Folk Society 2008-2011

  • Contradance club, offering alcohol-free community-engaging social activity to college students.
  • Reorganized club structure, recruited other students to new club positions.
  • Organized monthly folk dances, bringing in bands and callers.