Andrew M. Rappe


Blanchard Professor of ChemistryProfessor of Materials Science and Engineering

(215) 898-8313

264 Cret, Lab: 263, 265, 267, 268 Cret


Theoretical Chemistry and Physics of Energy Conversion

Andrew M. Rappe is Blanchard Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania.  He received his A.B. in "Chemistry and Physics" summa cum laude from Harvard University in 1986, and his Ph.D. in "Physics and Chemistry" from MIT in 1992.  He was an IBM Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Berkeley before starting at Penn in 1994.

Andrew received an NSF CAREER award in 1997, an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship in 1998, and a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award in 1999.  He was named a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2006. 

Rappe was named Weston Visiting Professor at the Weizmann Institute of Science in 2014, and Ziqiang Professor at Shanghai University in 2016. He was awarded the Humboldt Research Award in 2017 and the Cheney Fellowship at University of Leeds in 2018.
Andrew is one of two founding co-directors of the VIPER honors program at Penn, the Vagelos Integrated Program in Energy Research.

Andrew has published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles. In recent years, he has become a leader in the theory of hybrid organic-inorganic perovskites and of topological materials. He has championed the use of the bulk photovoltaic effect for solar energy harvesting, and he has made seminal contributions to the theory of ferroelectric materials and to topological physics. In the field of electrochemistry, Rappe studies how nonstoichiometric surfaces, smart material substrates, and anomalous light-matter interactions yield electrocatalysts with breakthrough activity and selectivity for hydrogen evolution, oxygen evolution, and CO2 reduction reactions.

  • B.A. Chemistry and Physics, Summa Cum Laude, Harvard University (1986)
  • ONR Graduate Fellow, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1986-1989)
  • JSEP Graduate Fellow, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1990-1992)
  • Ph. D. Physics and Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1992)
  • IBM Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California at Berkeley (1992-1994)
Research Interests

The Rappe group develops new theoretical physical and chemical methods and applies them to a broad range of materials and challenges relating to energy conversion. A key focus of the group involves the study of light-matter interactions and quantum materials, including bulk photovoltaic effects (#1 and #12 below), hybrid perovskite materials for solar conversion (#3 and #9), and topological materials (#4 and #5). The group also has a broad focus on electrochemical energy storage via catalysis and ion migration for batteries (#6, #7, and #8). Another area of leadership for the group is the study of ferroelectric materials, including their polar phase transitions (#2), domain structure (#13, #14), piezoelectricity, stability at the nanoscale, optical responses (#1, #12), and composition modifications including relaxor ferroelectrics (#13) and next-generation silicon CMOS-compatible ferroelectrics (#11). The group also takes great interest in opening new chemical pathways through mechanochemistry, the application of force and stress (#10). Each of these topics is at the cutting edge of science, posing challenges that have not been faced previously. Accordingly, all of these areas are enabled by a vibrant methodological program to generate new physical models and computational approaches to predict novel properties. Taken together, this research team is solving problems in energy conversion that will ensure a sustainable energy future.

The Rappe group welcomes researchers of every background. Our projects benefit from expertise in chemistry, physics, materials science, mathematics, computer science, and other related fields. We live by the idea that "you never know where the next idea is going to come from". That could be from you, so if this research interests you, please don't hesitate to contact Prof. Rappe and his group.


Supported By



Selected Publications

1. I. Grinberg, D. V. West, M. Torres, G. Gou, D. M. Stein, L. Wu, G. Chen, E. M. Gallo, A. R. Akbashev, P. K. Davies, J. E. Spanier, and A. M. Rappe, "Perovskite oxides for visible-light-absorbing ferroelectric and photovoltaic materials", Nature 503, 509-12 (2013). (cover article)

2. I. Grinberg, V. R. Cooper, and A. M. Rappe, "Relationship between local structure and phase transitions of a disordered solid solution", Nature 419, 909-911 (2002).

3. Y.-H. Kim, S. Kim, A. Kakekhani, J. Park, J. Park, Y.-H. Lee, H. Xu, S. Nagane, R. B. Wexler, D.-H. Kim, S. H. Jo, L. Martinez-Sarti, P.Tan, A. Sadhanala, G.-S. Park, Y.-W. Kim, B. Hu, H. J. Bolink, S. Yoo, R. H. Friend, A. M. Rappe & T.-W. Lee, "Comprehensive defect suppression in perovskite nanocrystals for high-efficiency lightemitting diodes", Nat. Photon. 15, 148-55 (2021). (Cover Article)

4. S. M. Young, S. Zaheer, J. C. Y. Teo, C. L. Kane, E. J. Mele, and A. M. Rappe, "Dirac Semimetal in Three Dimensions", Phys. Rev. Lett. 108, 140405 (1-5) (2012).

5. Y. Kim, B. J. Wieder, C. L. Kane, and A. M. Rappe, "Dirac Line Nodes in Inversion-Symmetric Crystals", Phys. Rev. Lett. 115, 036806 (1-5) (2015).

6. M. Esmaeilirad, Z. Jiang, A. M. Harzandi, A. Kondori, M. T. Saray, C. U. Segre, R. Shahbazian-Yassar, A. M. Rappe, and M. Asadi, "Imidazolium-functionalized Mo3P nanoparticles with an ionomer coating for electrocatalytic reduction of CO2 to propane", Nat. Energy 8, 891-900 (2023).

7. H. Han, Q. Jacquet, Z. Jiang, F. N. Sayed, J.-C. Jeon, A. Sharma, A. M. Schankler, A. Kakekhani, H. L. Meyerheim, J. Park, S. Y. Nam, K. J. Griffith, L. Simonelli, A. M. Rappe, C. P. Grey, S. S. P. Parkin, "Li iontronics in single-crystalline T-Nb2O5 thin films with vertical ionic transport channels", Nat. Mat. (2023).

8. D. Behrendt, S. Banerjee, C. Clark, and A. M. Rappe, "High-Throughput Computational Screening of Bioinspired Dual-Atom Alloys for CO2 Activation", JACS 8, 4730-4735 (2023).

9. O. Yaffe, Y. Guo, L. Z. Tan, D. A. Egger, T. Hull, C. C. Stoumpos, F. Zheng, T. F. Heinz, L. Kronik, M. G. Kanatzidis, J. S. Owen, A. M Rappe, M. A. Pimenta, and L. E. Brus, "Local polar fluctuations in lead halide perovskite crystals", Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 136001(1-6) (2017).

10. S. Banerjee and A. M. Rappe, "Mechanochemical molecular migration on graphene", JACS 144, 7181-8 (2022).

11. S. Zhou, J. Zhang, and A. M. Rappe, "Strain-induced antipolar phase in hafnia stabilizes robust thin-film ferroelectricity", Sci. Adv., 8, eadd5953 (1-6) (2022).

12. S. M. Young and A. M. Rappe, "First Principles Calculation of the Shift Current Photovoltaic Effect in Ferroelectrics", Phys. Rev. Lett. 109, 116601 (1-5) (2012).

13. H. Takenaka, I. Grinberg, S. Liu and A. M. Rappe, "Slush-like polar structures in single-crystal relaxors", Nature 546, 391-395 (2017).

14. S. Liu, I. Grinberg and A. M. Rappe, "Intrinsic ferroelectric switching from first principles", Nature 534, 360-3 (2016).


Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Honors and Awards

  • Senior Editor for the Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2023-present
  • National organizer for the Electronic Structure Workshop series of conferences 2022-present
  • George Fisher Baker Lectureship in Chemistry, Cornell University 2021
  • Urmila Gopal Singhal Lectureship in Chemistry, Wayne State University 2021
  • Senior Editor, Journal of Physical Chemistry 2020-present
  • Cheney Fellowship, University of Leeds 2018-present
  • Humboldt Research Award, von Humboldt Foundation 2017
  • Weston Visiting Professorship, Weizmann Institute of Science 2014-present
  • Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching 2012
  • Charles Ludwig Award for Distinguished Teaching 2012
  • Founding co-director, Vagelos Integrated Program in Energy Research 2011-present
  • Fellow of the American Physical Society 2006
  • Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award 1999-2004
  • Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship 1998-2000
  • National Science Foundation CAREER Award 1997-2001