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Conformal metasurface coating eliminates crosstalk and shrinks waveguides

Toward a Smart Graphene Membrane to Desalinate Water 

Energy Storage Solution Combines Polymers and Nanosheets

The Millennium Cafe Pitch Competition, designed to help scientists better communicate the complexity of their work, was featured on WPSU's SciTech Now

2D layered devices can self-assemble with precision

Research News

Jul 31 2017

A new, lightweight composite material for energy storage in flexible electronics, electric vehicles and aerospace applications has been experimentally shown to store energy at operating temperatures well above current commercial polymers, according to a team of Penn State scientists. This polymer-based, ultrathin material can be produced using techniques already used in industry.

Jul 31 2017

Learn about a science contest at Penn State - the Millennium Cafe Pitch Competition - that's helping scientists better communicate the complexity of their work.

Jul 5 2017

Squid-inspired proteins can act as programmable assemblers of 2D materials, like graphene oxide, to form hybrid materials with minute spacing between layers suitable for high-efficiency devices including flexible electronics, energy storage systems and mechanical actuators, according to an interdisciplinary team of Penn State researchers.

Upcoming Events 2017

Safety Week 2017

The Materials Safety Olympics will be held on September 12.  Register your team today - DEADLINE is September 1, so don't miss out on the fun with awards and prizes!

Every Week 10 a.m.
The Millennium Cafe

An opportunity to spend time "outside the box" developing new ideas and leveraging the collective expertise.

Particle Characterization Workshop

The physical properties of materials can influence a wide range of behaviors such as flowability, reaction and dissolution rates or the effectiveness of an abrasive material.

Materials Day 2017

Materials Day 2017 will dig deep into a number of the emerging "Hot Topics in Materials" research.

Convergence of TEM Methods for Materials and Life Sciences

For researchers who are working in both life sciences and materials sciences to discuss common methods and instrumentation.

15 - 16
Electron Probe MicroAnalysis (EPMA) Workshop

An introduction to the capabilities of EPMA along with applications and analysis.

Materials Day 2017 - October 17-18

October 17-18 is Materials Day!  Featuring experts from government, industry, and academia in informal break-out sessions across two days, Materials Day 2017 will tackle topics that matter, from advanced, sustainable manufacturing to materials for next generation healthcare. Be sure to mark your calendar!

Details about this event > > >

Click HERE to Register!

Millennium Cafe

The Penn State Microbiome Center is a Community Studying Communities

In 12 months, the Penn State Microbiome Center has moved from concept to community. This intercollege initiative turned center started in fall 2016 with the financial and scholarly support of ten colleges and institutes. The Center was further spurred by cluster hires funded by the Colleges of Agricultural Sciences and Medicine and the Huck Institutes. Today the Microbiome Center is working toward the goal of supporting transformative, interdisciplinary research in microbiomes by fostering long-term working relationships while simultaneously providing infrastructure and resources needed for increasing diversity and breadth of interdisciplinary microbiome research at Penn State.

Modeling, Understanding, and Manipulating Microstructural Patterns in Materials

Pattern formation is common in nature, ranging from biological cell structures, snow-flakes, to cloud patterns. Understanding the structural, chemical, thermal, electrical, and magnetic patterns in materials at different length scales and their responses to the changes in the environmental conditions at different time scales is considered as the holy grail of materials research.  In this presentation, I will show a few representative examples to demonstrate the utilization of the phase-field modeling method to understand experimentally observed microstructural patterns and to provide guidance to the synthesis and manipulation of microstructural patterns for optimum properties and device performances.

The Materials Research Institute

A Culture of Interdisciplinary Research

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.

Four Lab Solution: Theory, Synthesis, Fabrication, Characterization

NSF MIP Materials Innovation Platform
2D Crystal Consortium (2DCC)

The 2DCC-MIP is focused on advancing the synthesis of 2D materials within the context of a national user facility.

The Materials Characterization Lab
Materials Characterization Lab

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.

The Materials Computation Center
Materials Computation Center

Our primary goal is to support internal and external users working in computer-based simulations of materials across the various length and time scales.

The Nanofabrication Lab
Nanofabrication Lab

Our staff scientists and engineers will enable users to transition fundamental research in nanomaterials to innovation-driven multicomponent integrated devices and systems.

New Capabilities & Emerging Materials Research

High-res Image from the TEM
In Situ Characterization

Flurry of innovations in new components that can be placed inside the TEM

Materials-Related Institutes, Facilities, & Centers





Energy Institute




Institute for Cyberscience


Industry and University Collaboration

Every organization has different priorities and resources. Directors of the MRI facilities recognizes this and help your company leverage our labs in various ways.
Find out more...