Category Archives: Seminars

ACMAL Seminar: Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy and Material Science

ACMAL – Applied Chemical & Morphological Analysis Laboratory


Wednesday, October 14, 2015
11:00 – 12:00 Noon
M&M 610

Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy and Material Science
Steve Ricchio
Laser Scanning Microscopy Specialist
Olympus Scientific Solutions Americas


Laser scanning confocal microscopes are essential and ubiquitous tools for biological and biomedical sciences. However, modern laser scanning confocal microscopes have a number of advantages for the study of materials as well. Materials applications include high resolution reflected and transmitted light microscopy as well as photo-stimulated luminescence, pseudo-infinite depth of field imaging and spectral deconvolution. I will discuss these capabilities that make the laser scanning confocal microscope a versatile addition to the materials science toolkit.

Refreshments will be served.

MSE Seminar: 3D cauliflower-fungus-like graphene as a highly efficient counter electrode material for dye-sensitized solar cells

MSE Seminar

The next Materials, Science and Engineering Seminar will take place from 11 a.m. to noon tomorrow in Seminar Room 610 of the M&M Building.

PhD candidate Wei Wei will present, “3D cauliflower-fungus-like graphene as a highly efficient counter electrode material for dye-sensitized solar cells.” Yun Hang Hu (MSE) is the advisor.

MSE and Rail Transportation seminar: Railroad Bearing and Wheel Failures

feb24Rail Transportation seminar: Dr. Brent Wilson, Amsted Rail
Title: Railroad Bearing and Wheel Failures
Feb 24, 2015, 4:00 PM Dow 642

Dr. Wilson has been directing product research and metallurgical analysis for railroad specific applications from both academic and industrial positions for ten years.Currently, he is the Director of Research and Development for Amsted Rail, the world’s largest manufacturer of railway undercarriage components, i.e. wheels, bearings, axles, castings, and end-of-car coupling devices.Throughout his career, he has been working toward continuous improvement in both product reliability and performance through the application of technological advancements to new and existing products for multiple industries, including: railroad, automotive, aerospace, military, and pipeline.

For the past six years, Dr. Wilson has been an active member of the AAR Technology Outreach Committee focusing on emerging and developing technologies in the railway sector.During his career, Dr. Wilson has authored and/or presented over 40 articles on industrial research, specifically highlighting technical innovations in engineered products and performance.

Sponsored by the Michigan Tech Rail Transportation Program

MSE Seminar: Disorder-Engineered Titanium Dioxide Nanocrystals: Fundamentals and Application to Solar-Driven Hydrogen Production

Materials Science & Engineering Department at Michigan Technological University; John & Virginia Towers Distinguished Lecture Series, Samuel S. Mao, University of California at Berkeley, Friday December 5, 2014
11:00 am – 12:00 pm, Room 610, M&M Building

Title: Disorder-Engineered Titanium Dioxide Nanocrystals: Fundamentals and Application to Solar-Driven Hydrogen Production;

This seminar will provide an overview of recent progress in the development of earth-abundant photocatalytic materials for solar-driven production of hydrogen. The emphasis will be the realization of disorder-engineered titanium dioxide, starting with an introduction of the fundamental concept behind disorder engineering. The method of synthesizing disorder-engineered titanium dioxide nanocrystals will be presented, followed by measurements of their structural, optical, and electronic properties. Photocatalysis experiments based on solar-driven hydrogen production using disorder-engineered titanium dioxide nanocrystals, that can absorb solar energy in both visible and infrared wavelength regions, will be summarized, and the physics underlying visible light absorption as well as an increased photocatalytic efficiency of disorder-engineered titanium dioxide nanocrystals will be discussed.

Speaker Bio: Professor Samuel Mao obtained his Ph.D. degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 2000. He is Director of Clean Energy Engineering Laboratory of the University of California at Berkeley. In 2013, he founded the Institute of New Energy, a private international research institution, after raising more than $15 million startup fund. He was also a career staff scientist at U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory between 2001 and 2013. He published 130 refereed articles, which have received over twenty-thousand (20,000) citations. He is also an inventor of more than 20 patents, and has delivered 100 plenary, keynote, or invited talks at various international conferences and leading universities. He has served as a technical committee member, program review panelist, grant evaluator, and national laboratory observer for the U.S. Department of Energy. He co-founded the First International Symposium on Transparent Conducting Materials, the First International Conference on Energy Nanotechnology, and the First International Workshop on Renewable Energy. He co-chaired Materials Research Society (MRS) annual meeting in the spring of 2011, and the International Conference on Clean Energy in 2012. He received 2011 “R&D 100” Technology Award.

MSE Seminar: Properties of Glassy Polymers at the Nanoscale versus the Bulk State

Materials Science and Engineering Department, John & Virginia Towers Distinguished Lecture Series Seminar, Tuesday, October 7, 2014, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm, Room 610 M&M Building;

Donald R. Paul, University of Texas at Austin, Title: Properties of Glassy Polymers at the Nanoscale versus the Bulk State

The need for more energy efficient processes continues to drive interest in polymeric membranes for gas separations; removal of carbon dioxide and other impurities from natural gas is one of the important targets for this technology. There is interest in the discovery of new polymer structures for membranes that are more permeable, more selective or more robust particularly with regard to resisting plasticization by highly soluble gases like carbon dioxide. In general, the best polymers for these applications have high glass transition temperatures.

To achieve commercially attractive levels of flux or productivity, most membranes have an asymmetric or composite structure where the separating layer is very thin, of the order of 100 nm in thickness. It is generally assumed that these thin layers have the same permeation properties as thick films, tens of microns in thickness, which are easily prepared in the laboratory for evaluation of membrane materials. In fact, the usual method for estimating the thickness of the separating layer is to compare its gas permeance or flux to the permeability of a thick film. However, there is growing evidence that thin films of glassy polymers with thicknesses of a few hundred nanometers behave quite differently than thick films. A major factor is the observation that thin glassy films undergo physical aging, i.e., approach towards equilibrium, much more rapidly than do bulk glasses presumably due to high segmental mobility at free surfaces. This presentation will summarize recent evidence concerning the differences between thin and thick films with regard to aging, plasticization and thermal history based on gas permeation observations.

Dr. Donald R. Paul is the Ernest Cockrell, Sr. Chair professor in Department of Chemical Engineering at University of Texas at Austin. Prof. Paul got his bachelor degree from North Carolina State College and his master and Ph.D. degree from The University of Wisconsin at Madison. Professor Paul’s research interests include the broad areas of polymer science and engineering and chemical engineering with more than 700 papers published in prestigious journals. He obtained many awards and honors. He is an Elected Member of National Academy of Engineering (1988), Mexican Academy of Sciences (2001), and the Academy of Sciences of Bologna (2011). He is a Fellow for numerous important societies, including the Society of Plastics Engineers (2004), the American Chemical Society (2009), the Materials Research Society (2009), and the ACS Polymer Division (2011). He won Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award (SPE-TPM&F) (2011), General Motors R&D Most Valued Colleague Award (2009), AIChE Founders Award (2008), Herman F. Mark Polymer Chemistry Award (American Chemical Society) (2005), Alan S. Michaels Award for Innovation in Membrane Science and Technology (NAMS) (2005); NAMS Founders Award (2005); American Chemical Society E.V. Murphree Award (1999); Council for Chemical Research Malcolm E. Pruitt Award (1999); AICHE William H. Walker Award (1998); Society of Plastics Engineers International Award (1993); Society of Plastics Engineers Education Award (1989); AIChE Materials Engineering and Sciences Division Award (1985); American Chemical Society Phillips Award for Applied Polymer Science (1984); Engineering News-Record Award (1976); and the American Chemical Society Arthur K. Doolittle Award (1973) etc. He was the Director of Texas Materials Institute (1998-2011) and the editor-in-chief of Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research (an ACS journal).