Rachel has spent more than eight years engaged in the investigation, design and development of innovative technologies in the industrial, engineering and chemical disciplines. With a proven track record of defining new research directions, guiding high-performance research teams and pioneering cross-discipline collaborations, she is a valuable resource and advisor to firm clients who seek to capture and protect their cutting edge technology.

Rachel was awarded a PhD in Physical Chemistry from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Her doctoral research focused on the optical properties of plasmonic nanoparticles, optimizing their design for applications in spectroscopy, solar energy, catalysis, cancer therapy and biodiagnostics. Additionally, Rachel conducted collaborative research with the Material Science Engineering Department and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.

In addition to her own academic achievements, Rachel also brings years of experience as an academic mentor, tutor, teaching assistant and scientific journal editor to her work as a scientific advisor. With these skills she is able to effectively assist research and development teams as well as guide business-side executives in the highly technical aspects of patent preparation.


Georgia Institute of Technology, B.S., Chemistry, with highest honors

Georgia Institute of Technology, B.S., Physics, with highest honors

Georgia Institute of Technology, PhD, Physical Chemistry


  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • Experience

    • Researcher, Georgia Institute of Technology
    • Teaching Assistant, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Practice Areas

  • Technologies

  • Publications & Presentations

    • Near R, Hayden SC, Hunter RE, Thackston D, El-Sayed MA. Rapid and Efficient Prediction of Optical Extinction Coefficients for Gold Nanospheres and Gold Nanorods. Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2013, 117, 23950-23955.

    • Near R, Hayden SC, El-Sayed MA. Thin to Thick, Short to Long: Spectral Properties of Gold Nanorods by Theoretical Modeling. Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2013, 117, 18653-18656.

    • Near R, El-Sayed MA. Hollow Gold Nanorectangles: The Roles of Polarization, Shape and Substrate. J ChemPhys, 2013,139, 044713.

    • Near R, Hayden S, El-Sayed MA. Extinction vs Absorption: Which Is the Indicator of Plasmonic Field Strength for Silver Nanocubes? Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2012, 116, 23019.

    • Near R, Tabor C, Duan J, Pachter R, El-Sayed MA. Pronounced Effects of Anisotropy on Plasmonic Properties of Nanorings Fabricated by Electron Beam Lithography. Nano Letters, 2012, 12, 2158.

    • Mackey M, Ali M, Austin L, Near R, El-Sayed M. The Most Effective Gold Nanorod Size for Plasmonic Photothermal Therapy: Theory and In Vitro Experiments. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 2014, 118, 1319-1326.

    • Gupta MK, Konig T, Near R, Nepal D, Drummy LF, Biswas S, Naik S, Vaia RA, El-SayedMA,Tsukruk VV. Surface Assembly and Plasmonic Properties in Strongly Coupled Segmented Gold Nanorods. Small, 2013, 9, 2979-2990.

    • Hayden S, Austin L, Near R, Ozturk R, El-Sayed MA. Plasmonic Enhancement of PhotodynamicCancer Therapy. Journal of Photochemistry and PhotoBiology A: Chemistry, 2013, 269, 34-41.

    • “Hollow Gold Nanorectangles: The Role of Polarization, Substrate, and Orientation” Poster, Southeastern Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Atlanta, GA, November, 2013.

    • “Effects of Anisotropy on Plasmonic Properties of Nanorings Fabricated via EBL” Poster, 57th International EIPBN Conference, Nashville, TN, May, 2013.

    • “Coupling Phenomena and Plasmonics in Organic/Inorganic Nanostructures” Talk, Annual BIONICS Meeting, Atlanta, GA

    • “Coupling Phenomena in Arrays of Plasmonic Nanostructures” Invited talk, AFRL, Dayton, OH, July, 2011.

  • Honors & Awards

    • Georgia Institute of Technology Presidential Fellowship
    • President’s Undergraduate Research Award
    • William M. Spicer Scholarship
    • Outstanding Undergraduate in Chemistry Award
    • Dreyfus Fellowship/Scholarship