In our multidisciplinary group we focus on experimental methods drawn from a variety of disciplines, including chemistry, the clean-room nanofabrication techniques of electrical device engineers, and even biological assembly methods, to create new, controlled nanostructures with unique optical properties. Our major area of interest is in materials with collective electron oscillations, known as surface plasmons. More recently we have begun to integrate these materials with other media, such as semiconductor quantum dots, bulk semiconducting media, fluids, optically active (fluorescent) molecules, and biomolecules. We perform a variety of optical spectroscopies and imaging measurements on our structures, to characterize our structures as quantifiably as possible. We work closely with theorists in the Nordlander group, and others, to understand and refine our systems. We also collaborate with numerous other experimental groups on topics of mutual interdisciplinary interest, such as biomedical applications, single-molecule sensing, and energy applications.