Featured News:

See All News:

Leal Group

Leal group shows how oxygen transfer is altered in diseased lung tissue

Fri, 04/10/2020 - 12:55  

A multidisciplinary team of researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has developed tiny sensors that measure oxygen transport in bovine lung tissue. The study – which establishes a new framework for observing the elusive connection between lung membranes, oxygen flow and related disease – is published in the journal Nature Communications.

Jessica Krogstad

Jessica Krogstad wins TMS Early Career Faculty Fellow Award

Wed, 04/08/2020 - 11:30  

Funded by The Minerals, Metals & Materials (TMS) Foundation, this award recognizes an assistant professor for accomplishments that have advanced the academic institution where employed, and for abilities to broaden the technological profile of TMS.

Krogstad will give a lecture presentation, “Challenging the Paradigm for Materials in Extreme Environments: Embracing Dynamic Material Properties,” at the Young Professional Luncheon/Lecture on Tuesday, February 25. 

Cathy Murphy

MRL Associate Director Cathy Murphy to lead the Department of Chemistry

Tue, 04/07/2020 - 20:00  

The dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has announced that Professor Cathy Murphy has accepted the offer to serve as the next head of the Department of Chemistry. 

Dean Feng Sheng Hu said Murphy’s appointment will be effective June 1. She will succeed Martin Gruebele, the current department head who has served in that capacity for more than three years. 

Vidya Madhavan

New measurements reveal evidence of elusive particles in a newly-discovered superconductor

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 15:12  

Particle chasing—it’s a game that so many physicists play. Sometimes the hunt takes place inside large supercolliders, where spectacular collisions are necessary to find hidden particles and new physics. For physicists studying solids, the game occurs in a much different environment and the sought-after particles don’t come from furious collisions. Instead, particle-like entities, called quasiparticles, emerge from complicated electronic interactions that happen deep within a material.

Shen Dillon

Breaking the temperature barrier in small-scale materials testing

Tue, 02/25/2020 - 12:08  

Researchers have demonstrated a new method for testing microscopic aeronautical materials at ultra-high temperatures. By combining electron microscopy and laser heating, scientists can evaluate these materials much more quickly and inexpensively than with traditional testing.

Ashish Kulkarni

Graduate student Ashish Kulkarni selected for Ross J. Martin Award

Tue, 02/18/2020 - 16:21  

Mr. Kulkarni, who is part of Paul Braun’s group, was selected in a college-wide competition for outstanding research achievement by a graduate student.

“Ashish has been an incredible asset to my group, and this award is wonderful recognition of his intellectual leadership and hard work as a PhD student,” said Braun.

Nancy Sottos

Nancy Sottos elected to National Academy of Engineering

Fri, 02/07/2020 - 15:27  

Nancy Sottos, an engineering professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering. She is one of 87 new members and 18 international members announced by the Academy on Feb. 6.

Nicola Perry

Nicola Perry receives NSF CAREER Award

Wed, 01/29/2020 - 18:51  

The NSF’s Early Career Development Program’s CAREER Awards are prestigious, competitive awards given to young faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholar through outstanding research, excellent education, and the integration of education and research. The program will provide five years of support for the award. 

The project funded by the award is entitled "Dynamic point defect architectonics – uncovering crystal chemical design rules for tailored chemical expansion."

Braun Cahill and DeMarco

Braun, Cahill, and DeMarco receive DURIP awards

Tue, 01/28/2020 - 14:25  

Three Illinois Materials Research Laboratory (MRL) faculty, Paul Braun, Director of MRL and Racheff Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, David Cahill, Willet Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, and Brian DeMarco, Professor of Physics, have received Defense University Research Instrumentation Program (DURIP) awards. 

Paul Braun

Researchers gain control over internal structure of self-assembled composite materials

Thu, 01/16/2020 - 08:42  

Composites made from self-assembling inorganic materials are valued for their unique strength and thermal, optical and magnetic properties. However, because self-assembly can be difficult to control, the structures formed can be highly disordered, leading to defects during large-scale production. Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Michigan have developed a templating technique that instills greater order and gives rise to new 3D structures in a special class of materials, called eutectics, to form new, high-performance materials.

Vidya Madhavan

Study: evidence for propagating Majorana quasiparticles in a topological superconductor

Tue, 01/07/2020 - 10:26  

Physicist Vidya Madhavan and colleagues find evidence for propagating Majorana quasiparticles in a topological superconductor.

Brian Jing and Chris Evans

New polymer material may help batteries become self-healing, recyclable

Mon, 01/06/2020 - 13:27  

Lithium-ion batteries are notorious for developing internal electrical shorts that can ignite a battery’s liquid electrolytes, leading to explosions and fires. Engineers at the University of Illinois have developed a solid polymer-based electrolyte that can self-heal after damage – and the material can also be recycled without the use of harsh chemicals or high temperatures.

The new study, which could help manufacturers produce recyclable, self-healing commercial batteries, is published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Atom movement when stress is applied

Study: Stress changes the normal aging process of metallic glass

Thu, 12/19/2019 - 19:46  

Researchers in the Department of Materials Science at Illinois have found that by applying stress to metallic glasses, it is possible to disrupt the normal aging process of these alloys. The findings, published in Nature Communications, may contribute to an understanding of how to extend the life of this material.

David Cahill

David Cahill named 2019 AAAS Fellow

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 11:31  

Cahill is a Willett Professor of Engineering and was the department head of materials science and engineering from 2010-18. He is an expert on the concept of minimum thermal conductivity and transient optical measurement techniques. His research program focuses on developing a microscopic understanding of thermal transport at the nanoscale; the discovery of materials with enhanced thermal function; the interactions between phonons, electrons, photons and spin; and advancing fundamental understanding of interfaces between materials and water.

Hoffmann and Van der Zande named 2019 Highly Cited Researchers

Fri, 11/22/2019 - 11:37  

Hoffmann is a Founder Professor in materials science and engineering and a member of the Materials Research Laboratory. His research focuses on topics related to magnetism, such as spin transport, magnetization dynamics and biomedical applications. His work on spin Hall effects has contributed to the development of spintronics, electronic devices that harness electron spin for faster and more efficient computing. Hoffmann is a Fellow of the American Vacuum Society, the American Physical Society and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

Bent Graphene

Graphene: The more you bend it, the softer it gets

Wed, 11/13/2019 - 11:08  

Graduate student Edmund Han, left, professor Elif Ertekin, graduate student Jaehyung Yu, professor Pinshane Y. Huang, front, and professor Arend M. van der Zande have determined how much energy it takes to bend multilayer graphene – a question that has long eluded scientists.


Qian Chen and graduate students

Crystallization clarified, researchers report

Wed, 10/30/2019 - 15:21  

By Lois Yoksoulian, News Bureau

Professor Qian Chen, seated, and graduate students Binbin Luo, left, and Zihao Ou collaborated with researchers at Northwestern University to observe and simulate the formation of crystalline materials at a much higher resolution than before.

Photo by Fred Zwicky

Nadya Mason

Nadya Mason receives 2020 Edward A. Bouchet Award of the American Physical Society

Wed, 10/23/2019 - 10:45  

Nadya Mason, Professor of Physics and Director of Illinois MRSEC, has won the 2020 Edward A. Bouchet Award of the American Physical Society (APS). This award recognizes a distinguished underrepresented-minority physicist who has made significant contributions to physics research and the advancement of scientists from underrepresented groups.

Illinois awarded NSF Research Training (NRT) grant for materials/data science program

Thu, 10/17/2019 - 11:41  
The NRT materials/data science team includes (back row from left) Lucas Wagner (Physics), Bo Li (Statistics), and Harley Johnson (MechSE, Associate Dean for Research). (Front row from left): Klara Nahrstedt (CS, Director of Coordinated Science Laboratory), Dallas Trinkle (MatSE), and Pinshane Huang (MatSE).
HEDAT project

High-energy battery project receives $2M, 2-year grant from Army Corps of Engineers

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 11:52  

​The project, High Energy Density Anode Technologies (HEDATs), is focused on the basic science underpinning high-energy anodes, solid electrolytes, dense cathodes and the interfaces in such systems. Creating the next-generation of technologies to enable safe, reliable, and high-performance energy storage is the goal of this foundational research.