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The goal of our lab is to determine the fundamental principles governing applications of soft materials in energy, environmental science, and biotechnology.
The materials we study include polymer solutions and gels, colloidal dispersions, immiscible fluid mixtures, and "living" materials such as biofilms. We are excited about their potential to help solve engineering challenges like water remediation, oil recovery, carbon sequestration, and drug delivery. However, developing effective solutions requires us to understand how soft materials behave in complex spaces, like porous rocks and biological tissues.
We tackle this challenge by integrating microscopy and image analysis, microfluidics and rheology, and materials processing and characterization. We also complement our experiments with theoretical modeling, using ideas from fluid dynamics, polymer physics, soft mechanics, equilibrium and non-equilibrium statistical mechanics, and network theory. Our work is thus highly collaborative and multi-disciplinary, combining expertise from engineering, physics, chemistry, biology, and materials science.