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April 2013

Recap of the Spring 2013 Meeting

It was truly a privilege to have an opportunity to be a MRS Blogger for the Spring 2013 conference.  I truly felt that I played a major role in the conference.  It also made me be more alert and active during the meeting.  At the meeting there were many chances to network with other scientist that either did similar work or had a different but interesting project.  I received many suggestions that will intern make me a better scientist.  I would not trade the opportunity that I had as a blogger for anything.  It was truly a great experience.  I would like to add that there was additional added perk that the meeting was held in the wonderful city of San Francisco.  Thank you MRS for give me the opportunity to blog.


I felt very lucky to have been a part of MRS this year, getting the chance to both hear and speak to some amazing scientific minds, some of the minds that are truly dedicated to pushing our materials technology forward to address some of the pressing and serious issues of today. The break from research and exposure to the variety of great and promising science has been both refreshing and motivating. I return to lab with a fervor and enthusiasm only MRS could cultivate

Perfect nanotube placement for custom designer organic circuits

Erika Penzo had a fantastic talk in the LL symposium yesterday showcasing a very controlled strategy for placing carbon nanotubes on lithographically deposited gold nanodots in desired orientations.  She does this by taking advantage of DNAs ability to coordinate well with gold as well as functional groups on nanotube periphery.  The nanotubes can be solubilized by sonicating with DNA which wraps the strands around the nanotube (wow!).  With clever placement of controlled single DNA strands on both nanodots and nanotubes, she can achieve high yielding single-molecule placement of the nanotubes in a desired orientation.  This technique will be crucial to the future design of designer nano-circuits where metallic and other interconnects will be replaced by the more efficient and appropriate nanotubes....huge!

Apr 5, 2013

Last day in 2013 MRS spring meeting. I am going to leave San Francisco this afternoon. I hope every one enjoy this meeting as much as I do. Looking forward to see you guys in future conferences.

Nanogenerators for future electronics

What an interactive talk by Professor Wang yesterday in the mobile energy storage symposium!  His interactive media and vibrant presence effectively communicated his science and demonstrated the importance of being engaging.. the talk was packed (pictured below).

He proposed a fascinating nanogenerating technology in which the triboelectric effect is combined with mechanical oscillation on capacitor plate separation to generate power.  The mechanical oscillation can come from our everyday walking or other environmental mechanical forces which are already present yet unharnessed.  A truly self-sustaining battery!

last day

Its the last day of MRS. So sad! I have been extremely happy with my experience here. Thank you for the opportunity to be a meeting blogger and to report on all the exciting things going on here! Just a few more technical sessions to come.. Don't miss em.

Science As Art and Technology Innovative Forum V

This morning while at the Moscone West, I went to look at the Science as Art Displays.  I had read from previous blogs about the art displays and I decided to check it.  I was so amazed at the level of creativity that I saw displayed in the Exhibits.  20130403_132900

 I also went to some of the sessions in the technology innovation form. I really enjoyed the session on a view from the Lab, Licensing and Legal offices-Scaling Laboratory Developments in a Corporate Environment.  This session was interesting to me because it raised some of the possible issues that I could face in a corporate environment.  


session SS wrap up

Today’s AM talks in SS told the story of harnessing biomolecules and proteins to produce electricity. David Baker gave a thorough introduction to the challenges of wiring PSI to an electrode. He discussed the many issues facing this system including the density of PSI molecules at the surface and the long intra-molecular distance over which electron transport must occur. His group has devised a creative 3D architecture that integrates a built-in osmium redox shuttle to achieve high current density.

The next speaker, Houman Yaghoubi described his method of wiring up the reaction center in an organized SAM via docking at cytochrome C SAMs. This approach not only affords control over the placement and the orientation of RC but also evades some of the conductivity issues that inherently occur due to the pocket in RC.

Rather than utilizing a native protein, Leslie Dutton has worked on producing stable “plastic proteins” out of a short, repeating peptide sequence. These can incorporate biomolecules for functions such as oxygen and electron transport. They have also demonstrated their ability to tune these proteins to mimic various other biological functions.

All 3 of these talks demonstrated deep understanding of the fundamental challenges facing biomimetic charge transport mechanisms. The mastery required for these research groups to be able to manipulate biology into non-native functionality is unbelievable! However, the charge transport pathways in biomolecules at the angstrom level in are still largely unknown. In order to improve the biomimetic designs, we NEED to be able to model the systems. Therefore, Anders Blom described his advances towards an organic electronics software package. His group has developed a package that uses DFT capable of computing a wide array of electronic properties of arbitrary organic molecules or macromolecules. 

This field is progressing so quickly—we’ll soon be at the point of utilizing self-assembly to rationally design bio-electrical systems. Let’s thank our sponsors:

Aldrich Materials Science
Asylum Research, an Oxford Instruments Company
Biolin Scientific
Journal of Materials Science
Journal of the Royal Society Interface

Well done.

Make sure to come to the poster session tonight from 8-11 tonight!

Impedance spectroscopy

One can use impedance spectroscopy to measure recombination rate, mobility, density of states, carrier concentration in solar cells. Measured values are fitted to a model circuit that describes the physics of different processes happening inside the device. Correct model circuit representation of the system under study is key to use this charaterization technique. We can compare internal electronic processes in devices made under processing conditions.