Chemistry major and Science of Advanced Materials student Phillip Medina receives a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship
April 26, 2013 - Senior and chemistry major Phillip Medina recently received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. This highly competitive, multi-year award will provide him with $30,000 per year to help cover his graduate school expenses.
Medina will continue his education at CMU and has already enrolled as a graduate student in the Science of Advanced Materials (SAM) program, where he plans to continue his research on lithium-ion batteries with chemistry professor and SAM researcher Bradley Fahlman, searching for methods to increase the potential capacity of the batteries through the use of porous silicon and vertically aligned nanowires.
The National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) helps ensure the vitality of the human resource base of science and engineering in the United States and reinforces its diversity. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees at accredited U.S. institutions.
NSF received over 13,000 submitted applications for the 2013 competition. Medina was one of only 2,000 recipients who received an award.
Howell receives international award for work in thermal analysis
April 22, 2013 - Central Michigan Universityprofessor of chemistry and polymer science Bob Howell has received the 2012 North American Thermal Analysis Society Award for Outstanding Achievement in thermal analysis research.
"Thermal analysis has to do with just the response of materials to a change in temperature," Howell said. "You can learn about the structure of the material based on the way it responds, and so that's the fundamental technique."
Howell applies his research in a number of ways, focusing primarily on studying polymer degradation at different temperature ranges. For example, his research to address the issue of foul taste and brown streaking in milk jugs - and his proposed solution - helped reduce the cost of milk production and was considered particularly noteworthy by the society.
The solution to issues with milk containers linked back to Howell's research with The Dow Chemical Co., where in the mid-1980s he was asked by Dow to experiment with using polymeric materials in food packaging, and successfully adapted the materials to stop the streaking.
Most containers are made with different layers of various polymer materials, each with a different composition. The elimination of the streaking allows the milk to be stored at room temperature. "Because no oxygen gets in, the milk doesn't spoil," Howell said.
Howell has also worked to remove odors from degrading polystyrene, the plastic material used in packaging food, such as cookies and pastries.
The Outstanding Achievement award from NATAS is unique to a university of CMU's size. Given annually, it recognizes distinguished achievement in the field of thermal analysis, including but not restricted to thermogravimetry, differential thermal methods and effluent gas analysis. The award recipient must have performed outstanding work in the utilization, creation or refinement of thermal techniques of generally wide interest and impact.
Howell is the 44th recipient of this award, which represents the highest honor bestowed by the Society.
Fahlman selected to be Contributing Editor for InterNano
April 11, 2013 - Professor of chemistry and Science of Advanced Materials researcher Bradley Fahlman has been selected to be a Contributing Editor for InterNano, a project of the National Nanomanufacturing Network. Fahlman will generate original content about topics in nanomanufacturing and write expert reviews based on relevant and recent news in the industry.
Nanomanufacturing is the controllable manipulation of materials structures, components, devices and systems at the nanoscale (1 to 100 nanometers) in one, two and three dimensions for large-scale reproducibility of value-added components and devices. It remains the essential bridge between the discoveries of the nanosciences and real-world nanotechnology products.
The National Nanomanufacturing Network (NNN) is an alliance of academic, government and industry partners that cooperate to advance nanomanufacturing strength in the U.S. and serves as a catalyst for progress by facilitating and promoting workshops, roadmapping, inter-institutional collaborations, technology transition, test beds and information exchange services.
SAM student Harris receives 2012 IEEE-DEIS Fellowship
November 27, 2012 - Graduate student Scott Harris has been awarded a $5,000 fellowship from the Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation Society (DEIS) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The fellowship is awarded to students pursuing a Ph.D. degree in the area of insulating materials, breakdown, charge transport, electrostatic phenomena, high voltage effects and related subjects.
Harris, who is doing his research with assistant professor of physics Axel Mellinger, received the award for his innovative project on studying dielectric barrier discharges in micrometer-sized voids. The data will help to improve so-called ferroelectrets, i.e. polymer foams where electric charges have been embedded into the internal voids. These piezoelectric materials have a wide range of applications as pressure sensors, actuators and energy harvesters. Unlike many of the currently used ceramic materials, they are flexible, can be manufactured in large sizes and do not contain toxic metals.
Harris is currently a Ph.D. student in CMU's Science of Advanced Materials program. He earned an M.S. degree in physics from CMU and a B.S. in mathematics and physics from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va.
Part of this award is reserved for travel support and will be used to present his research at the 2013 Conference on Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenomena in Shenzhen, China.
SAM student Medina places first at AISES 2012 National Conference
November 12, 2012 - Science of Advanced Materials graduate student Phillip Medina recently traveled to Anchorage, Alaska and attended the American Indian Science and Engineering Society's 2012 National Conference.
Medina won first place at the conference for his research poster titled, "Precursor Design for the Atomic Layer Deposition of Hafnium Oxide Thin Films," and took home a $1,500 award. His research abstract stated:
"The continued advancement of Moore’s Law will require improved materials to prevent dielectric breakdown in the ever diminishing transistor gates of microelectronics. Hafnium oxide thin films present attractive gate properties with a dielectric constant eight times that of silicon oxide and are already being used by industry leaders such as IBM, Texas Instruments, and NEC. Atomic layer deposition (ALD) provides a means of controlled film formation for hafnium transistor dielectrics. ALD processes require a volatile precursor to bring the metal to the substrate in the vapor phase. Herein, we explore the volatility of several hafnium complexes and their use as precursors for ALD. Specifically, we examine k-diketiminato ligand with N-methyl/C-methyl substituents & synthesis of corresponding mono- & bis-diketiminato-bis-chloro hafnium (IV) complexes as well as mono- & bis-diketiminato-bis-dimethylamino hafnium (IV) complexes. Furthermore, the effect of precursor and deposition temperature will be analyzed on resultant ALD film composition and uniformity."
Medina is a Ph.D. student in CST's Science of Advanced Materials program where professor of chemistry Brad Fahlman is his faculty advisor.
The mission of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) is to substantially increase the representation of American Indians and Alaskan Natives in engineering, science and other technology-related disciplines.
Held annually since 1978, the AISES National Conference is a one-of-a-kind, three-day event convening high school juniors and seniors, college and graduate students, teachers, workforce professionals and corporate partners. Held in a different North American city each fall, the conference includes professional development, networking opportunities, student presentations and awards.
AISES is the only professional society established by and for American Indian and Alaskan Natives that specifically emphasizes lifelong learning and educational achievement by utlizing cultural aspects with STEM. Members from over 200 tribal nations are represented with AISES and supported by the partnership of corporate, government, academic and tribal decision-makers.
Petkov's research published in prestigious Nature Materials journal
July 11, 2012 - Physics professor Valeri Petkov recently co-authored a paper - "Ferroelectric order in individual nanometre-scale crystals" - that has been published in the July 2012 issue of the prestigious Nature Materials journal.
Petkov's research - done in collaboration with researchers from the University of California at Berkeley, Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York, University of New Orleans in New Orleans, La., and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif. - investigated the length scale at which phenomena such as ferroelectricity is still present, and how it is of fundamental relevance for nanoscale
applications. Their high-resolution transmission electron microscopy study now shows how ferroelectricity can persist in nanoparticles down to about 5 nm in diameter, pointing the way towards the ultimate size
limit for ferroelectric applications.
Nature Materials journal covers a range of topics within materials science, from materials engineering and structural materials (metals, alloys, ceramics, composites) to organic and soft materials (glasses,
colloids, liquid crystals, polymers). It is one of the premiere, high impact publications in the field of materials science.
Kaya awarded $448,287 from the National Science Foundation
April 23, 2012 - Engineering and Technology faculty member Tolga Kaya has been awarded $448,287 from the National Science Foundation for his project, "RET Site on Multidisciplinary Engineering Research for Rural Michigan's Future". Kaya shares this award with Janis Voege, director of the Central Michigan Science/Mathematics/Technology Center.
This award is effective May 1, 2012 and expires April 30, 2015.
Fahlman joins Springer Plus editorial board
January 12, 2012 - Brad Fahlman, professor of chemistry, has joined the editorial board of a new journal published by Springer, a leading global publisher of scientific books and journals. Springer Plus aims to streamline scientific publications through an online-only open access site. Manuscripts from all scientific disciplines as well as interdisciplinary articles are encouraged, and peer review will be rigorous but fast. More about the journal can be found online at www.springerplus.com.