Some materials have a naturally layered structure whose properties can change drastically when reduced to only a monolayer or two, graphite thinned to graphene being one of the best known examples, but there are a host of others. Developing new 2-dimensional materials and studying the interactions between various materials when stacked on top of each other is one of the most promising research areas today in physics and material science. The 2DCC-MIP at Penn State was established by the National Science Foundation to develop these new materials and make them freely available to the general scientific community via a national lab like model, where anyone can write a proposal to obtain or develop these new materials.
Regenerative medicine demonstrates great potential for development of tissues and organs through the application of stem cells, biomaterials and soluble factors. This talk will explore the interaction between stem cells and materials and how additive manufacturing technologies can be used to drive the formation of bio-instructive scaffolds capable of directing the differentiation of stem cells.
In partnership with numerous faculty, departments, and colleges; the Materials Characterization Laboratory (MCL) recently installed a state-of-the-art nanomechanical & nanotribological testing system, the Hysitron TI 9800 Triboindenter. This talk will highlight the breadth of new functionality this instrument brings to campus – which includes variable temperature measurements (up to 800C), the ability to study samples in their fully hydrated state, nanoscale DMA, nanoscratching, and nanoindentaion to name but a few.
As the Information Age has transitioned into the Big Data Age we’ve neglected to translate all data into knowledge. Novel approaches are required to express data in more artistic and visual expressions and the Huck Data & Visualization group aides in the transformation of static graphics to dynamic visualizations or standard models into sophisticated art ventures. We will highlight new ways that technology can aid faculty and students in showcasing their research to new audiences with better clarity, control, and charisma.
Among the nanomaterials that emerged over the past few decades, one-dimensional needle-like carbon nanotubes (NT) attracted the attention of physicists for a number of unique properties. Discovery of functionalization of NTs with DNA strands placed them at the interface between biotic and abiotic systems and opened wide perspectives for using NTs as sensing and imaging agents at the nanoscale.
The world needs crops with better root systems that can produce food with less water and fertilizer. Understanding how to optimize root structure and function entails complex computational, mathematical and biophysical challenges.
The glass transition, i.e., the gradual arrest of a supercooled liquid into the glassy state, is often described as a “mystery” due to the complicated nonequilibrium physics involved in describing glass-forming systems. Notwithstanding these difficulties, a comprehensive fundamental understanding of the glass transition is of critical importance for many practical high-tech applications of glass, including optical fiber, glass substrates for liquid crystal displays, and chemically strengthened cover glass for electronic devices. In this presentation, I will review recent progress that offers an unprecedented level of understanding of the glass transition and the glassy state, as well as the ability to design new industrial glasses starting at the atomic level.
Emerging infectious diseases, like Ebola, spillover from wildlife to humans and cause mortality and concern. We know almost nothing about the spillover process and so we are unpacking and revealing the processes involved. One example is given by the Hendra virus, an infection that spreads from bats to horses and then people in eastern Australia. To solve these issues globally, we have formed a new laboratory called the Applied Biological Research Lab (ABRL) and seek collaboration.
Science and innovation can often send you in unexpected directions. In this talk, I will describe how a failed attempt at growing sulfur-oxidizing bacteria from the Arctic lead to the discovery of a new process to produce micro-structured carbon-sulfur composites that might be used as cathode materials for next-generation Li-S batteries. I will discuss the exciting discoveries, roadblocks, and victories of this project, along with some future goals and avenues for collaboration.
The Materials Research Institute, Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences, and partner Institutes and Colleges are seeding teams focused on securing NIH funding. We are now accepting proposals for NIH-focused research and imaging studies that take advantage of new analytical capabilities and insights at the interface of physical and life sciences. Teaming is required, mentoring of junior faculty is highly encouraged, and the deadline for proposal submission is January 12, 2018. Come hear additional details of this new seed funding program.
How can we produce more food sustainably? Precision agriculture is an emerging area that involves using data and technology to optimize farm management practices. Sensing systems with machine learning capabilities can increase productivity in agricultural production systems.
Recent advances in cryo-EM have brought us into a new era where atomic structures are feasible. Successful cryo-EM consists of three components: sample preparation, data collection, and processing. Penn State has invested in a state of the art temperature and humidity controlled prep room to prepare samples. Penn State has recently acquired a new Titan Krios microscope that collects atomic resolution data. We are equipped with the computer resources to process cryo-EM data into high resolution maps. So what do you need to get an atomic resolution map? Can you take advantage of this revolutionary new technique? Will your sample work? This talk will present the criteria for a good input sample required for an atomic resolution 3D structure.
Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy (NMR) is a unique technique providing both structural and dynamic information with atomic resolution in both life and material sciences. However, it suffers from inherently poor sensitivity due to the low magnetic moment of the active nuclei and low natural abundance. Dramatic NMR signal enhancement as a result of dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) using microwave irradiation at the electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) transition reduces the measurement time by 2-4 orders of magnitude compared to the traditional solid-state NMR. The remarkable contributions of the new technology in both material (heterogeneous catalysts, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), periodic mesoporous organosilicates (PMOs), covalent organic frameworks (COFs), colloids, composites and polymers) and life sciences (membrane proteins, intrinsically disordered proteins, fibrils, amyloids, and cell membrane) will be highlighted by several recent studies.
Recent advances in the field of three-dimensional, metal printing, also known as additive manufacturing, have increased the potential for building components used in engines that provide propulsion for flight, namely gas turbines. Using 3D printing for turbine components broadens the design space and allows for increasingly small and complex geometries to be fabricated with little increase in time or cost. This presentation will show how turbine engines can become more efficient thereby using less fuel through advances in additive manufacturing.
Time-resolved laser spectroscopy provides detailed examinations of energy transfer processes in chemical and materials systems. However, these techniques are typically limited to hundreds of nanometers in spatial resolution, which is insufficient to view nanoscale energy flow in “real time.” I will describe advances from our lab that allow us to pinpoint the spatial position of optical signals with spatial accuracies of one nanometer, including examples from energy localization and interfacial charge transfer. I will also describe how these methods can be combined with magnetic fields and correlated electron microscopy to characterize the electronic and optical properties of photonic systems.
All of us know the common use of memory as a storage element. However, in this talk I’ll discuss interesting aspects of memory that make them an excellent candidate for computing, analytics, learning, cybersecurity and so forth. Several new memory technologies beyond conventional RAMs and Flash along with their potential applications will be discussed.
Higher education is facing a considerable number of challenges, including demographic changes, growing financial stresses, evolving models of the roles and characteristics of faculty, and significant changes in the content and delivery of an education. In many ways, Penn State is sensing and responding to these challenges. The trends predicted for the next decade are worthy of a more strategic analysis as they will likely define the evolution of our University.
Some of the best music for solo guitar (nylon string) comes from guitarist/composers of South America. I will play selections of music from Brazil and Paraguay that are sure to delight the listener. A wonderful thing about instrumental music is its symbolic power to captivate the imagination and impact each listener personally. So come prepared to dream with me as I perform this compellingly beautiful repertoire.