Eastern Illinois University Logo
Sustainable Energy MS |



Featured Students

Vision & Mission

Program Features

Degree Requirements

Dual Degree Programs

Admission Process

Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Graduate Coordinator


Helpful Links

Center for Clean Energy Research and Education (CENCERE)

Renewable Energy Mentorship Program

Photo Gallery

Contact Us


Back to Listing

Dr. Hongshan  He

Dr. Hongshan He

Assistant Professor

Office: Rm 3430 - Physical Science Building
Phone: 217-5816231
Email: hhe@eiu.edu
Website: http://www.ux1.eiu.edu/~hhe/
Dr. He strives to do his best through teaching, research and service to make our society better using his knowledge in chemistry.

Dr. He has a strong research interests in photoactive materials with broad applications in organic photovoltaics, optoelectronics, and other thin-film devices. He has extensive experiences in inorganic and organic synthesis, high performance computing, small molecule crystallography, photovoltaic device fabrication/characterization, and nanofabrications. His research is highly interdisciplinary. 

Before joining Eastern Illinois University, Dr. He was a Research Assistant Professor and graduate faculty at Center for Advanced Photovoltaics, South Dakota State University (2007-2013), a Staff Scientist at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology, North Dakota State University (2004-2006), and a Professor of Applied Chemistry, National Huaqiao University (2003-2006). Dr. He is currently an active Editorial Board Member of Advances in Chemistry and Pure and Applied Science, a reviewer of many scientific journals including J. Am. Chem. Soc., RSC Advance, Electrochimica Acta, and Crystal Growth & Design, and a lead organizer of Materials Research Society symposium RR (Spring, 2013) and symposium B (Spring, 2014).       

Frequently Taught Courses

CHM1310, General Chemistry I
CHM1040, The World of Chemistry
CHM 5007, Energy Chemistry


Ph.D. (1996), Inorganic Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University. Advisor: Prof. Liangnian Ji
M.Sc. (1993), Organometallic Chemistry, Lanzhou University. Advisor: Prof. Qizhen Shi
B.Sc. (1990), Chemistry, Lanzhou University

Professional Organizations

American Chemical Society
Materials Research Society


1. Photoactive transition metal complexes for carbon-carbon coupling reactions

Photocatalysts are becoming more and more important in cost-effective production of value-added fine chemicals.However, the photocatalysts are only limited to ruthenium complexes, iridium complexes, copper complexes, eosin Y, 9,10-dicyanoanthracene, and triphenylpyrylium. The Pd-based photocatalyst is scarce. Considering the significance of Pd-catalyzed reactions in synthetic chemistry and petroleum field, it is imperative to develop novel palladium complexes that are capable of photocatalytic reactions, including C-C coupling reactions. Dr. He group is interested in developing novel palladium-based photoactive complexes for C-C coupling reactions under visible light illumination. These reactions include Sonogahira reactions, Heck reaction, etc.

2. Light-harvesting materials for photovoltaics

Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) are made from inexpensive materials and can be adapted for a variety of indoor and outdoor applications with minimal environmental impact. As such, they are a promising technology for the cost-effective conversion of solar energy to electricity. It is therefore widely expected that DSCs will become a key technology on the market for cost-effective conversion of solar energy to electricity; however, narrow light absorption and weak binding strength of dye to TiO2 nanoparticles prevent its mass production. We are using an interdisciplinary approach including chemical synthesis, theoretical modeling, spectroscopy, device fabrication, and impedance spectroscopy to address these two issues. 

3. Near-infrared emitting materials for biosensing and imaging

Fluorescent materials are widely used in a variety of medical diagnostic tests, such as immunoassays. Certain lanthanide ions, such as ytterbium (III) with emission at 980 nm, are good candidates for such probes. Over the last two decades, numerous NIR emitting lanthanide-based probes with different sensitizers have been synthesized and their sensitization capability. These materials exhibit poor emission efficiency and require short wavelength excitation, both undesirable for biomedical applications. We are using a molecular engineering approach to design and synthesize novel sensitizers that can be sensitized effectively using red light and emit efficient in the near-infrared light.   

Selected Publications

  1. Liu, Z.; Xu, X.; Arooj, Q.; Wang, H.; Yin, L.; Li, W.; Wu, H.; Zhao, Z.*; Chen, W*.; Wang, F.; Chen, Y-B;, He, H.*  Modulated Charge Injection in p-Type Dye-sensitized Solar Cells Using Fluorene-based Light AbsorbersSi, L.;  ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces2014, DOI: 10.1021/am405610b
  2. Si, L.; He, H.*, Zhu, K., 8-Hydroxylquinoline-conjugated porphyrins as broadband light absorbers for dye-sensitized solar cells, New. J. Chem., 2014, DOI: 10.1039/C3NJ01643A
  3. He, H.*,  Near-infrared emitting lanthanide complexes of porphyrin and BODIPY dyes, Coord. Chem. Rev., 2014,  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ccr.2013.11.006
  4. He, H.*, Gurung, A., Si, L., and Sykes, A. G. A simple acrylic acid functionalized zinc porphyrin for cost-effective dye-sensitized solar cells, Chem. Commun., 2012, 48, 7619-7621.
  5. He, H.*, Gurung, A. and Si, L. 8-Hydroxylquinoline as a strong alternative anchoring group for porphyrin sensitized solar cells, Chem.Commun., 2012, 48, 5910-5912.
  6. He, H.*, Dubey, M., Zhong, Y. and Si, L. Iodized BODIPY chromophore as a long wavelength sensitizer for the near-infrared emission of ytterbium ions, Chem. Commun., 2012, 48(13), 1886-1888.
  7. Shrestha, M.; Si, L.; Chang, C.-W.; He, H.*; Sykes, A. G.; Lin, C.-Y.; Diau, E. W. –G. Dual functionalityof BODIPY chromophore in porphyrin-sensitized nanocrystalline solar cells, J. Phys. Chem. C, 2012,116(19),10451-10460
  8. Zhong, Y. Si, L., He, H.*. Sykes, A. G. BODIPY as an efficient green light sensitizer for lanthanide-inducednear-infrared emission. Dalton Trans.,2011, 40(43), 11389-11395.
  9. He, H.*, Dubey, M., Shrestha, M., Zhong, Y., Sykes, A. G., 2-(1-Acetyl-2-oxopropyl)-5,10,15,20-tetraphenylporphyrinand its transition metal complexes: structures, photophysics and photovoltaics, Eur. J. Inorg. Chem., 2011,25, 3731-3738
  10. Dubey, M. Shrestha, M.,Zhong, Y., He, H.* Fixation of TiO2 nanotube membranes on FTO glass for high efficiency dye-sensitized solar cells, Nanotechnology2011, 22, 285201

Selected Conference Presentations

  1. Si, L., Li, W., Zhao, Z., He, H. Novel porphyrin dyes with enhanced light absorption and binding strength for dye-sensitized solar cells, 246th American Chemical Society Fall meeting, Indianapolis, IN, September 9 -13,  2013 (Oral).
  2. He, H., Si, L., Novel green porphyrins as long wavelength sensitizers for near-infrared emission of ytterbium ion (III), 246th American Chemical Society Fall meeting, Indianapolis, IN, September 9 -13,  2013. (Oral)
  3. He, H., Zhong, Y., Si, L. Novel green light sensitizers for the near-infrared emission of lanthanide ions,  Joint American Chemical Society Midwest /Great Lakes Regional Meeting, Saint Louise, MO, United States, Oct 19-22, 2011 (Oral).
  4. He, H., Dubey, M., Shrestha, M. G. Hybrid TiO2 nanomaterials for dye-sensitized solar cells, Joint American Chemical Society Midwest /Great Lakes Regional Meeting, Saint Louise, MO, United States, Oct 19-22, 2011 (Oral).

Funding & Grants

National Science Foundation, DMR 1229577
ACS Petroleum Research Fund

Faculty/Staff Login to Update Info