Featured Recent Publication (1)

This paper shows how to create a hydrogel that has many zones, each of which has different mechanical properties. The gel above has four zones, which stretch to different extents. The modulus of the stiffest zone is 100 times the modulus of the softest zone. Our approach could be used to build realistic mimics of the spinal discs present between our vertebrae, which have a soft core and a stiff shell. 

Featured Classic Publication (1)

Many molecules (‘gelators’) self-assemble into long fibers, which entangle to form molecular gels. Such gelation occurs in some organic solvents, but not in others. But is it possible to predict if gelation would occur beforehand? This paper provided a framework to predict molecular gelation using thermodynamic parameters of the various solvents. The same framework has now been used by many researchers.

Featured Classic Publication (2)

This paper showed for the first time how one could easily create a ‘photorheological fluid‘ in the lab, i.e., a fluid whose viscosity could be dramatically altered by shining light. The fluid contained molecules that self-assembled into long chains initially. Irradiation with UV light altered the geometry of the molecules, which made them re-assemble into tiny spheres. This caused a 10,000-fold drop in viscosity

Did you know?

Our research been featured in news stories by two local TV stations and in a program that aired on the Discovery Channel titled “Stephen Hawking Presents”.

Did you know?

More than 20 patents have been filed by UMD’s Office of Technology Commercialization based on inventions from our lab.

Did you know?

A polymer gel invented in our lab swells up to 3000 times its weight in water. This is a world record to our knowledge.

Did you know?

Three startup companies have been launched from our lab (Gel-e, GripBoost, Prasidiux).

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Our lab is credited with the first biomedical device invented at UMCP to receive FDA approval.

Did you know?

We developed the first food-grade dispersant that can be used to disperse oil spills into seawater.