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Program Highlights for year 2016

Universality of Microscopic Structure and Macroscopic Mechanical Response in Disordered Packings Across Length Scales

Research

A metal spoon can bend in half without breaking because of defects in its crystalline structure.  By contrast, a metal spoon with atoms in a disordered structure—a metallic glass spoon—would break via a catastrophic brittle fracture.  Here we show that disordered packings of particles ranging in size from atoms, as in a metallic glass, to nanoparticles to micron-sized colloids to centimeter-siz

(2016)

Video Archives of Outreach Presentations

Education

To increase our online presence, we are recording nearly all outreach presentations and making them available on our website (www.lrsm.upenn.edu/outreach/videos). These include Science Cafes, PREM seminars (given usually in Spanish), and various other events.

(2016)

Top Chefs at the MRSEC

Education

Harvard hosted its first ever “Top Chef” competition, as part of Science and Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Condensed Matter, now in its sixth year as a highly popular undergraduate course at Harvard.

(2016)

Biomimetic 4-D Printing

Research

Shape morphing systems may find potential application in smart textiles, autonomous robotics, biomedical devices, drug delivery and tissue engineering. Lewis and Mahadevan at the Harvard MRSEC have developed 4-D printing by creating a hydrogel-cellulose fibril ink that could be printed to induce a programmable shape change

(2016)

Glycodendrimers Can Sense Variants of Lectins by Agglutination

Research

A dendrimer is a synthetically made branched molecule. In this work, a family of amphiphilic Janus dendrimers bearing precise carbohydrate residues arranged in a defined sequence – glycodendrimers – were used to make vesicles that could be agglutinated by naturally occurring lectins that binds to carbohydrates. The lectins, called galectins, are human adhesion and growth regulatory lectins.

(2016)

6th Annual Philadelphia Materials Day

Education

The 6th annual Philadelphia Materials Day was held on Saturday, February 6, 2016 at the Bossone Research Center at Drexel University. This joint venture between Penn and Drexel Universities was attended by over 1100 students and parents. Each year faculty and their students present demos on materials-related themes of interest to K-12 students.

(2016)

Dirac Line Nodes in Inversion Symmetric Crystals

Research

Topological insulators, which were first introduced at Penn, are new materials with novel features such as protected states that hold potential for quantum computing.

(2016)

Identifying Structural Flow Defects in Disordered SolidsUsing Machine Learning Methods

Research

We are often taught that the difference between solids and liquids is that in solids, each of the constituent particles has a well-defined average position while in liquids, particles are constantly rearranging and changing their neighbors.

(2016)

Nanoscale Interfacial Complexation in Emulsion (NICE)

Research

Microcapsules that encapsulate and protect molecules and materials by forming isolated aqueous compartments inside hollow shells are widely used in a variety of applications in the food, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, and agriculture industries.

(2016)

Liquid Crystal Janus Droplets

Research

Janus colloids are composed of two-faced particles with distinctive surfaces and/or compartments. Lee, Collings, & Yodh have created the first Janus particles with a liquid crystal (LC) compartment. The droplets were prepared by combining microfluidic and phase separation techniques, and the LC compartment morphologies can be easily controlled to realize unique confining geometries (Fig.

(2016)

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