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Program Highlights

Computational Design of High-χ Block Oligomers for Accessing 1-nm Features

Research

The ability to precisely predict how molecular structure influences the microstructure of polymeric materials is the key towards the custom tailoring of desirable materials properties. Molecular dynamics simulations with atomistic level models were performed to design “high-χ” block oligomers that can self-assemble into 1-5 nm domains for next generation microelectronics applications.

(2018)

Glass-like Thermal Conductivity in Epitaxial Oxygen-Vacancy-Ordered Oxide Films

Research

Precise control over defects in materials is often a highly effective means to control properties and function. In oxide materials, which are the focus of enormous current attention for many existing and proposed applications, defects known as oxygen vacancies often play the key role. These vacancies, simply missing oxygen atoms in the structure, can have a significant impact on properties.

(2018)

IRG1: Increased Stability of CuZrAl Metallic Glasses Prepared by Physical Vapor Deposition

One of the main drawbacks of metallic glasses is their low thermodynamic stability, which limits their formability and service life.  Recently, experiments by members of the Wisconsin MRSEC showed that organic glasses with high thermodynamic stability can be synthesized via physical vapor deposition (PVD) onto a substrate at a controlled temperature.  Now, this team of researchers has used molecular dynamics simulations to predict that the same PVD methods can enhance the stability of metallic glasses. 

(2018)

Wisconsin MRSEC Researchers and Teachers Collaborate to Create Digital Educational Games

The Wisconsin MRSEC has developed research-inspired educational digital games that are each being played over 1900 times/week. Atom Touch teaches students about atom behavior, bonding, and forces. Crystal Cave lets students explore how molecules form repeating patterns to grow into large crystals.  During development, local K-12 teachers provided input on how to make the games more engaging for student learning.

(2018)

World Science Festival: Crystals, Colloids and Fun!

NYU-MRSEC investigators along with research scientist from the BioBus/BioBase organization mentored nine high school students as part of a two month peer-mentorship program.  The idea, to train high school students in optics, CAD/3D printing and basic of microscopy including applications in materials science (crystals and colloids).

(2018)

Phases of Matter – Adult Coloring Book

MRSEC investigators team-up to create an adult coloring book. The coloring book, “Phases of Matter,” designed to help the general pubic understand physics and phase behavior.

(2018)

Freezing on a Sphere

A crystal is defined by the regular and periodic ordering of the atoms, molecules, or particles that compose them.  If bent or strained, this order and regularity is disturbed, and defects appear that relieve some of the applied stress.

(2018)

Simple Coacervation of a Mussel-inspired Peptide Improves Wet Adhesion

Research

Upon spontaneous deposition on surfaces underwater and moderate compression, single-component coacervates of adhesive peptide mimics (mfp-3S-pep) display orders of magnitude improvement compared with un-coacervated native (mfp-3S) or synthetic peptides.

(2018)

UCSB MRSEC Maker Activities

Education

In response to the needs of teachers, the UCSB MRSEC has placed a new focus on the development of maker activities for K-12 students. These encourage the integration of maker activities into the school curriculum as well as within out-of-school environments (Maker Faires), supporting the adoption of Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

(2018)

Atomically-precise graphene etch masks for 3D integrated systems from 2D material heterostructures

Atomically-precise fabrication methods are critical for the development of next-generation technologies which rely on nanomaterials. New methods are particularly needed in van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures where it is necessary to individually address each molecular layer to form devices with nanometer thicknesses. The Illinois MRSEC has demonstrated a highly selective etching technique using graphene as a monolayer etch stop within vdW heterostructures. This technique is a versatile and simple nanofabrication process that bridges the challenging technological divide between atomic-precision and wafer scale uniformity.

(2018)

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