Materials Research Institute

the pennsylvania state university

Welcome to Materials Research Institute

Penn State's MRI is a catalyst for multidisciplinary education and innovations in materials.

Explore our Research Capabilities

Upcoming Events

The Millennium Café Weekly Collaboration

July 28, 2015

ToF-SIMS: A Novel Surface Analytical Technique with Wide-Ranging Applications from Materials to Biological Systems and Beyond

Jordan Lerach| Materials Characterization Lab

Using Neutron Scattering to Understand the Smallest Holes in Shale Rocks

Sue Brantley | Geosciences

Details & Past Cafés

Materials Research News & Press Releases

Stacking/choice of materials determines location and peak widthDiode a few atoms thick shows surprising quantum effect

June 19, 2015 - A quantum mechanical transport phenomenon demonstrated for the first time in synthetic, atomically-thin layered material at room temperature could lead to novel nanoelectronic circuits and devices, according to researchers at Penn State and three other U.S. and international universities.
Full story @

A herd of cattle share the road with an automobile, bicycler and pedestrians.Schiff receives NIH Pioneer Award

June 2, 2015 - Steven Schiff has received a $4.1 million National Institutes of Health Director's Pioneer Award, for research aimed at reducing the number of infant deaths from neonatal sepsis in developing countries by identifying the roots of infection, from season of birth to home environment.
Full story @

Customer Quotes

  • "The level of technical resources provided by the PSU Nanofab can help enable and extend the continued growth and global reach of our Pennsylvania-based company. We enthusiastically support the PSU Nanofab and will actively seek ways to strengthen our relationship with this valuable resources."

  • "As a small business resources are often limited, Nanofab worked with our engineers to produce micro featured gears for one of our medical devices. The bench top gear data was leveraged to support a successfully awarded Phase II NSF grant."

  • "Nanovus is successful at the Penn State Nanofab because the world class facility is well maintain by a professional dedicated staff. There are baseline recipes for all of the equipment and the staff actively provides technical support on the equipment and process flow. The Nanofab is complemented by the professionally staffed, full characterization suite in the same building. I have not found the the breadth or depth of abilities anywhere else."

  • "We have been using the fabrication facilities at Penn State to build and characterize our development devices for five years. The equipment is well maintained by a knowledgeable, capable, and helpful staff so its ready when we are. We've saved millions in capital and operational expenditures; more importantly, we saved precious time. Great job, keep it up!"

  • The Nanofab at Penn State was instrumental in getting a customer program started for us. The technical staff quickly developed a material that met our design criteria which has enabled us to launch a prototype run for a novel MEMS device. Moving forward with the project, I have been impressed with the level of customer service and how quickly I was able to get trained in the Nanofab as a commercial lab user. The engagement here was differentiating for us and the staff support has allowed us to maintain our milestone timeline. The Penn State Nanofab has been a great technology partner. We look forward to completing this project successfully and expect to work on new projects together in the future.

Spring 2015 Issue: Materials for Humanity

Focus on Materials Spring 2015

The topic of this issue, which can best be described as cultural and humanitarian materials science, is one of the key areas of our new strategic plan for MRI. We realize that MRI has the capabilities to make a profound impact on the programs Penn State has already pioneered in student engagement and socially responsible engineering in the developing regions of the world.

View Current Issues


TEM image

All About Looking at Atoms

2015 Taylor Lectures
Left: Image of TEM image of a sample (Sr, Ba)Nb2O6 Summary of the lectures...


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