Complex Materials and Processing

Complex materials, produced by highly refined control of structures at multiple length-scales, comprise the very fabric of many modern technologies. Soft materials, mostly synthetic polymers, are lightweight and strong — these are found as structural materials in cars, homes or sports equipment, in packaging for food and beverages, but also used as membranes for desalination and other separations.

Most polymeric materials introduced into commerce today contain multiple components or phases, with supramolecular structures ranging from nanometers to microns. Organic materials and polymers are also increasingly useful as building blocks for electronic and photovoltaic applications, an area of major activity in this department. Colloidal assemblies are also an important class of materials that have been the focus of significant research efforts at Princeton.

Processing and fluid dynamics play an important role in the development of polymeric materials and complex fluids. For example, researchers at Princeton utilize fast mixing of polymer solutions with a poor solvent for the polymers to produce nanoparticles with controlled structure, size, and complex morphologies in a one-step scalable process. Fluid-mechanical instabilities are being used to generate intricate patterns in two and three dimensions.

 

Faculty

Pierre-Thomas Brun

Dynamics of Fluids and Flexible Solids; Interfacial Phenomena; Pattern Forming Instabilities; Dynamics of Living Systems

Sujit S. Datta

Soft Matter Physics and Engineering; Flow Through Porous Media; Interfacial Phenomena; Biophysics; Biological Polymers; Microfluidics

Emily C. Davidson

Polymer Science and Engineering; Nanostructured and Liquid Crystalline Polymers; Engineering and Design of Hierarchical Materials; Additive Manufacturing

David B. Graves

Ionized Gas Plasma-Aided Nanofabrication; Plasma Catalysis; Molecular Simulations of Plasma-Surface Interactions

Bruce E. Koel

Surface Science; Heterogeneous Catalysis; Photocatalysis; Nanoscience and Nanotechnology; Plasma-Materials Interactions

Yueh-Lin (Lynn) Loo

Organic and Polymer Transistors and Solar Cells; Organic Semiconductors and Conducting Polymers; Self-Assembled Monolayers; Soft Lithography

Athanassios Z. Panagiotopoulos

Molecular simulation of fluids, materials and biological systems; Thermodynamic analysis of processes; Ionic liquids and their applications

Rodney D. Priestley

Polymer Science and Engineering, Nanoscale Materials Characterization, Supramolecular Polymers, Healing and Responsive Materials, Polymeric Membranes

Robert K. Prud'homme

Flow in Porous Media; Micro and Nanofluidic Phenomena; Rheology; Colloidal Dispersions; Polymer Engineering

Richard A. Register

Polymer Chemistry, Physics, and Engineering; Nanoscience and Nanotechnology; Rheology

Associated Faculty

Daniel Cohen

Bioengineering: biomaterials, biomechanics, swarm behavior

William M Jacobs

Theory and simulation of molecular self-assembly; multicomponent fluids; biomolecules; design of soft materials

Howard A. Stone

Fluid Dynamics and Transport Processes; Complex Fluids; Colloidal Hydrodynamics; Microfluidics; Cellular-scale Hydrodynamics; Biofilms

Claire White

Durability of Alkali-Activated Cements; Atomic and Nanoscale Morphology of Cementitious Materials; Reaction Kinetics of Cement Formation