For his MPhil degree at Cambridge, Daniel Hickstein investigated new methods for using X-ray diffraction to study nonlinear optical (NLO) materials. These materials have a plethora of technological applications, but development of new materials is currently slow and scientists are searching for a better understanding of how NLO materials function. He compared traditional charge-density crystallography techniques with new methods that involve fitting quantum mechanical wavefunctions to X-ray diffraction data. You can read more about his research at his blog: http://hickstein.wordpress.com/
After growing up in Seattle and Washington, DC, Dan attended Pomona College in Claremont, California, graduating in 2007 with a degree in chemistry. In August 2008 he began a PhD in chemistry at the University of Colorado in Boulder. He also enjoys rock climbing, hiking, backpacking, and cycling.