Visit our first ever virtual tour of a lab in the Materials Characterization Lab!
In 2017, MRI and Penn State began piloting a new program aimed to support the further development of strategic collaboration with industry.
Proof that a new ability to grow thin films of an important class of materials called complex oxides will, for the first time, make these materials commercially feasible, according to Penn State materials scientists.
Complex oxides are crystals with a composition that typically consists of oxygen and at least two other, different elements. In their crystalline form and depending on the combination of elements, complex oxides display a tremendous range of properties.
Rare earth elements are used in the manufacture of lighter and stronger materials for energy applications such as gas turbines and wind and power systems, defense applications, electronics, and the medical industry. 2017 data indicates that the US is 100% import dependent for 21 of the 50 non-fuel mineral commodities. This dependence poses a national security threat and as such the US DOE, DOD, and DOI are actively pursuing research and development efforts in this area to expand domestic production. Penn State along with other industrial partners is involved in research efforts to develop physical separation and chemical methods to concentrate rare earths and other critical elements from coal and other waste products. This talk will outline the multidisciplinary nature and challenges in this task that require collaborations across several disciplines.
“Seven Years after a Millennium Café Talk: Reflections on Research and Teaching Collaborations”
Over the past seven years, part of my research has focused on the use of nanoscale and microscale fillers as a strategy to transform the performance of polymers by providing new mechanisms to engineer dielectric, magnetic and coupled functionality, with important implications in actuation, energy harvesting and energy storage. The goal of the talk, which seeks to assess my interdisciplinary experiences with colleagues and students at Penn State and other institutions, is to provide an example of critical self-refection that might prove useful to colleagues interested in making sense of their own collaborative research and teaching practice.
Penn State’s investment in its interdisciplinary research institutes, including the Materials Research Institute (MRI), has created a culture of strong collaborations across disciplines. At Penn State, many researchers have the support of both their academic departments and the university-wide institutes, such as MRI. By encouraging crosscutting research, MRI and its sister institutes open up traditional silos of knowledge to the stimulus of other viewpoints and new ideas. This mingling of disciplines, often called “convergence,” brings together the physical and life sciences with engineering and computation to solve the most complex problems facing society today and in the future.
The 2DCC-MIP is focused on advancing the synthesis of 2D materials within the context of a national user facility.
The Materials Characterization Lab (MCL) is a fully-staffed, open access, analytical research facility charged with enabling research and educating the next generation of highly qualified researchers.
Our primary goal is to support internal and external users working in computer-based simulations of materials across the various length and time scales.
In the latest issue of Focus on Materials, the boundaries between materials science, engineering, and the life sciences are blurring. We offer a glimpse into the fascinating world of “convergence,” where the future of healthcare lies.
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Institute for Cyberscience
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