Four-Year College Faculty-Student Team Fellowships Program

In summer 2018, the following faculty/student teams joined the MRSEC group:
PSP 2018

Prof. Narayan Bhattarai and students Alexsis Thornton and Ryan Castillo, North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC
worked with Stephen Morin, Chemistry.

The NCAT team collaborated with Prof. Morin and his graduate students, Jay Taylor and John Kapitan. In one project, we investigated the use of printed microfluidic devices as an alternative approach to make alginate hydrogel micro-particles. We first printed a fluidic design on PET sheets and oxidized it under a UVO lamp, and then sandwiched it with functionalized silicone. The strong adhesion bonding between silicone and plastic took place at elevated temperature under compression, whereas the non-bonded part on the printed ink resulted in channels for the fluidic device. Using the fabricated device, we successfully synthesized alginate microparticles in different sizes. In a second project, we worked to develop programmable adhesive films from the combination of geometry and chemical bonding at the interfaces of the PET and silicone surfaces. We are exploring the possibility of continuing this research at North Carolina A&T State University, encapsulating different cell lines in alginate hydrogels microparticles for their potential use in biomedical applications.

PSP 2018

Prof. Meng Zhou and students Stephanie Richins and Pablo Paradis, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM
worked with Jeff Shield, Mechanical & Materials Eng..

The New Mexico State University faculty-student team worked in Dr. Jeff Shield’s group (Mechanical and Materials Eng.) with Ph.D. student Zahra Ahmadi serving as mentor. The team is involved in four projects: (1) Ag decorated FeCo core-frame nanocubes, which are used as highly sensitive gas sensors; (2) Fe-Si-B soft magnetic alloys produced by rapid solidification; (3) Cu-Fe nanoclusters for use as catalysts for CO2 reduction; and (4) resistive switching of core shell Co-CoO nanoclusters. The nanocubes and nanoclusters were produced using inert gas condensation, while the Fe-Si-B alloys were produced using melt spinning. Characterization was accomplished using MRSEC-related facilities within NCMN and NERcF, including scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, and magnetometry. The gas sensing experiments were done in collaboration with Alexander Sinitskii’s group, and the measurements of resistive switching were done in Alexei Gruverman’s group. The catalysis experiments will be accomplished at NMSU, continuing the collaboration.

PSP 2018

Prof. Carolina Ilie and students Andres Inga and Dylan Richmond
State University New York, Oswego, NY

worked with Peter Dowben and Shireen Adenwalla, Physics

The SUNY-Oswego team was involved in two research projects this summer. The first project, in which Prof. Ilie and student Dylan Richmond collaborated with the Dowben and Sinitskii groups, centered on the alloying of inorganic perovskite nanoparticles. These alloy nanoparticles are superior solar cell and luminescent display materials. The materials were characterized by photoluminescence, absorption, X-ray photoemission and transport. The second project, in which Prof. Ilie and student Andres Inga collaborated with the Adenwalla group, focused on the characterization of ferromagnetic and ferroelectric heterostructures. The samples, consisting of ferroelectric layers of vinylidene fluoride oligomer and a ferromagnetic layer of cobalt Pt/Co/MgO/VDF/Al, were characterized by PMOKE and by pyroelectric effect. The ferromagnetic/ferroelectric heterostructures have great potential as filters, inductors, resonators and attenuators, and also in sensors needed for biomedical applications such as magnetocardiography."