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News Article | April 17, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BROOKLYN, New York - Currently, many types of fabrics, including nylon, are made in an energy-intensive, unsustainable process that uses fossil fuel. Now, NYU Tandon School of Engineering Assistant Professor Miguel Modestino, of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, is proposing a method that eliminates oil from the equation, employing water, plant waste, and solar energy to deliver a material identical to the nylon now widely used in the fashion industry and in other commercial applications. Modestino and his co-researcher, Sophia Haussener of the École Polytechnique Fédéral de Lausanne (EPFL), have garnered a 2017 Global Change Award of €250,000 ($267,000) from the H&M Foundation, the non-profit arm of the retailing giant. The first such initiative by a major member of the fashion world, the Global Change challenge attracted almost 3,000 applicants this year and aims to support early innovations that can accelerate the shift to a circular and sustainable garment industry, in order to protect the planet. The awards were presented in Stockholm, Sweden, on April 5. The researchers chose to focus on nylon because of the large market for the popular polymer, which they estimate to be more than 6 million tons per year, with a value of more than $20 billion. Their proposed process uses photovoltaic arrays, which generate electricity directly from the sun, to drive the electrochemical reduction of acrylonitrile (ACN) to adiponitrile (ADN) and hydrogen (H2), which will, in turn, be synthesized into hexanediamine (HDA), one of the existing precursors to nylon. Because ACN can be derived from plant waste, only sun, water, and carbon dioxide will be required as inputs, and the new process will represent a new scheme for carbon capture, where greenhouse gases will be bound into the fabric, rather than releasing them into the air. "It is gratifying to contribute toward a zero-emissions world," Modestino said. "Once this process is tested and scaled up, there is the potential to expand the concept to other segments of the chemical industry, including the synthesis of substances like aluminum and chlorine." "Miguel Modestino takes an approach that we hope to see in every bit of research done at NYU Tandon: to create technology that can be used for the benefit of humankind," said Dean Katepalli Sreenivasan. "We are proud that the H&M Foundation recognizes the value of his hard work and vision." The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, the founding date for both the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture and the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly). A January 2014 merger created a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within NYU, the country's largest private research university, and is closely connected to engineering programs at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates Future Labs focused on start-up businesses in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


Home > Press > NYU Tandon researcher synthesizes hybrid molecule that delivers a blow to malignant cells: Protein-gold nanoparticle hybrid assembles to carry anti-cancer drug, then disassembles for delivery Abstract: A new hybrid molecule developed in the lab at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering shows promise for treating breast cancer by serving as a "shipping container" for cytotoxic -- or cell-destroying -- chemotherapeutic agents. The protein/polymer-gold nanoparticle (P-GNP) composite can load up with these drugs, carry them to malignant cells, and unload them where they can do the most damage with the least amount of harm to the patient. The hybrid molecule enhances small-molecule loading, sustained release, and increased uptake in breast cancer cells. It is also relatively easy to synthesize. It was developed by Jin Kim Montclare--an associate professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NYU Tandon and an affiliate professor of Chemistry at NYU and Biochemistry at SUNY Downstate--along with collaborators at the Department of Biology at Brooklyn College and Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Montclare explained that these abilities make the P-GNP vehicle unique among hybrids. "The protein component has been exclusively developed in our lab; no one else has made such constructs," she said. These protein polymers possess the unique ability to self-assemble in a temperature-sensitive manner while also exhibiting the ability to encapsulate small molecules. As published in the Journal of Nanomedicine & Nanotechnology, the team performed tests with in vitro samples of the MCF-7 breast cancer cell line, using the anti-inflammatory compound curcumin, shown experimentally to inhibit cancer cell growth when applied directly to a tumor, as the chemotherapy agent. When compared to the protein polymers alone, the P-GNP hybrid demonstrated a greater than seven-fold increase in curcumin binding, a nearly 50 percent slower release profile, and more than two-fold increase in cellular uptake of curcumin. This is an important achievement, given the difficulty in delivering chemotherapeutic compounds to their targets because such agents tend to be hydrophobic, meaning they don't dissolve easily in water. And the more potent they are, the more hydrophobic they tend to be, said Montclare, who recently received the "Rising Star Award" from the American Chemical Society's Women Chemist Committee. "The P-GNPs are able to solubilize the hydrophobic small molecule through both the protein domain itself, and the gold nanoparticles. Thus, P-GNP can carry higher payloads, enabling it to deliver more drug," she said. She also found an easier way to build these hybrid molecules. Most literature describes a process involving high temperatures and pressures, and harsh chemistry. But Montclare is able to synthesize P-GNP in one operation thanks to histidine tags, which, she said, are "responsible for 'templating' the GNPs, making the synthesis a possibility under ambient temperature and pressure. So we do it all at once because the protein itself crystallizes the gold right from a solution of gold salts to generate GNP right on the end of the protein polymer." The next step is to observe efficacy by injecting P-GNP complexes directly into a variety of mouse cancer models. Montclare said human testing of P-GNP is still years away. ### Outside funding support was provided by the National Science Foundation, Shiffrin Meyer Breast Cancer Discovery Fund, and the National Institute of Health's National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. About NYU Tandon School of Engineering The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, when the NYU School of Civil Engineering and Architecture as well as the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly) were founded. Their successor institutions merged in January 2014 to create a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention, innovation and entrepreneurship. In addition to programs at its main campus in downtown Brooklyn, it is closely connected to engineering programs in NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai, and it operates business incubators in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn. For more information, visit engineering.nyu.edu. For more information, please click If you have a comment, please us. Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.


News Article | November 10, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BROOKLYN, New York - Researchers at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering have pioneered a method for growing an atomic scale electronic material at the highest quality ever reported. In a paper published in Applied Physics Letters, Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Davood Shahrjerdi and doctoral student Abdullah Alharbi detail a technique for synthesizing large sheets of high-performing monolayer tungsten disulfide, a synthetic material with a wide range of electronic and optoelectronic applications. "We developed a custom reactor for growing this material using a routine technique called chemical vapor deposition. We made some subtle and yet critical changes to improve the design of the reactor and the growth process itself, and we were thrilled to discover that we could produce the highest quality monolayer tungsten disulfide reported in the literature," said Shahrjerdi. "It's a critical step toward enabling the kind of research necessary for developing next-generation transistors, wearable electronics, and even flexible biomedical devices." The promise of two-dimensional electronic materials has tantalized researchers for more than a decade, since the first such material -- graphene -- was experimentally discovered. Also called "monolayer" materials, graphene and similar two-dimensional materials are a mere one atom in thickness, several hundred thousand times thinner than a sheet of paper. These materials boast major advantages over silicon -- namely unmatched flexibility, strength, and conductivity -- but developing practical applications for their use has been challenging. Graphene (a single layer of carbon) has been explored for electronic switches (transistors), but its lack of an energy band gap poses difficulties for semiconductor applications. "You can't turn off the graphene transistors," explained Shahrjerdi. Unlike graphene, tungsten disulfide has a sizeable energy band gap. It also displays exciting new properties: When the number of atomic layers increases, the band gap becomes tunable, and at monolayer thickness it can strongly absorb and emit light, making it ideal for applications in optoelectronics, sensing, and flexible electronics. Efforts to develop applications for monolayer materials are often plagued by imperfections in the material itself -- impurities and structural disorders that can compromise the movement of charge carriers in the semiconductor (carrier mobility). Shahrjerdi and his student succeeded in reducing the structural disorders by omitting the growth promoters and using nitrogen as a carrier gas rather than a more common choice, argon. Shahrjerdi noted that comprehensive testing of their material revealed the highest values recorded thus far for carrier mobility in monolayer tungsten disulfide. "It's a very exciting development for those of us doing research in this field," he said. The researchers received support from the National Science Foundation and the Center for Functional Nanomaterials at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The paper, Electronic Properties of Monolayer Tungsten Disulfide Grown by Chemical Vapor Deposition, is available at http://scitation. . About the NYU Tandon School of Engineering The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, when the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture as well as the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly) were founded. Their successor institutions merged in January 2014 to create a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention, and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within the country's largest private research university and is closely connected to engineering programs in NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates business incubators in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: phys.org

For autonomous vehicles to make good on that promise they will need onboard artificial intelligence (AI) technology able to link them to highly detailed maps that reflect every change in the status of lanes, hazards, obstacles, and speed-limits in real time. Researchers at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering are making this critical machine-to-machine handshake possible. Yi Fang, a research assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a faculty member at NYU Abu Dhabi, and Edward K. Wong, an associate professor in the NYU Tandon Department of Computer Science and Engineering, are developing a deep learning system that will allow self-driving cars to navigate, maneuver, and respond to changing road conditions by mating data from onboard sensors to information on HERE HD Live Map, a cloud-based service for automated driving. The NYU Multimedia and Visual Computing Lab directed by Professor Fang will house the collaborative project. Fang and Wong recently received a gift fund from HERE, a global leader in mapping and location-based services owned by Audi, BMW, Daimler and Intel, with Tencent and NavInfo of China and GIC of Singapore also poised to become investors during 2017. NYU Tandon is one of HERE's first university research and development partners in HERE HD Live Map. High-definition (HD) maps meant for machine-to-machine communication must be accurate to within 10 to 20 centimeters. Self-driving vehicles need to continuously update, or register, their location on these maps with an equally high degree of accuracy, according to Fang, who said that the goal of the collaborative research is to enhance car-to-map precision to within 10 centimeters. "Essentially, we want to be able to precisely match what the car sees with what's in the cloud database. An incredibly precise ruler isn't of much use if your vision is blurry," he explained. "Our work involves employing computer vision techniques to refine the vehicle's ability to continually locate itself with respect to HERE's cloud-based service," said Wong. "That requires real-time images of the street and surrounding objects derived from cameras, LiDAR [a laser-based range-finding technology], and other on-board sensors." The researchers added that this precision is also important because automobiles connected to HERE's HD Live Map service will deliver data to the cloud on road conditions, traffic, weather, obstacles, speed limits, and other variables, allowing the service to upgrade nearly in real-time to reflect changing conditions. "3D computer vision and Deep Neural Network are the technologies driving the development of high- definition live maps for self-driving cars," said Xin Chen, HERE senior engineering manager and research scientist. "We're excited to kick off a long-term research collaboration with Professors Wong and Fang individually based upon their expertise in this domain as well as with NYU as a top institution for research and learning in the field." "The convergence of cybersecurity, big data, wireless technology, and artificial intelligence is already revolutionizing how people live and travel, and it holds the promise of safer transportation for billions across the globe," said NYU Dean of Engineering Katepalli R. Sreenivasan. "We gratefully acknowledge this research gift funding from HERE, which will advance the important work of Professors Wong and Fang and the students assisting them in this new frontier." The HERE mapping project joins a number of recent initiatives at NYU Tandon addressing safer and smarter transportation. The U.S. Department of Transportation selected a research consortium led by NYU Tandon Department of Civil and Urban Engineering researchers to become the first Tier 1 University Transportation Center (UTC) in New York City, dedicated to using data to make every mode of surface transportation - from walking through mass transit - more efficient and safe. Another venture - headed by a cybersecurity research team in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering - is developing the first free, open-source method for automakers to secure software updates. Uptane will protect vehicles from cyber criminals and cyber war while providing the auto industry with an inexpensive and quick way to install safety fixes. Explore further: The cybersecurity risk of self-driving cars


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BROOKLYN, New York -Self-driving cars could account for 21 million new vehicles sold every year by 2035. Over the next decade alone such vehicles -- and vehicles with assisted-driving technology --could deliver $1 trillion in societal and consumer benefits due to their improved safety. For autonomous vehicles to make good on that promise they will need onboard artificial intelligence (AI) technology able to link them to highly detailed maps that reflect every change in the status of lanes, hazards, obstacles, and speed-limits in real time. Researchers at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering are making this critical machine-to-machine handshake possible. Yi Fang, a research assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a faculty member at NYU Abu Dhabi, and Edward K. Wong, an associate professor in the NYU Tandon Department of Computer Science and Engineering, are developing a deep learning system that will allow self-driving cars to navigate, maneuver, and respond to changing road conditions by mating data from onboard sensors to information on HERE HD Live Map, a cloud-based service for automated driving. The NYU Multimedia and Visual Computing Lab directed by Professor Fang will house the collaborative project. Fang and Wong recently received a gift fund from HERE, a global leader in mapping and location-based services owned by Audi, BMW, Daimler and Intel, with Tencent and NavInfo of China and GIC of Singapore also poised to become investors during 2017. NYU Tandon is one of HERE's first university research and development partners in HERE HD Live Map. High-definition (HD) maps meant for machine-to-machine communication must be accurate to within 10 to 20 centimeters. Self-driving vehicles need to continuously update, or register, their location on these maps with an equally high degree of accuracy, according to Fang, who said that the goal of the collaborative research is to enhance car-to-map precision to within 10 centimeters. "Essentially, we want to be able to precisely match what the car sees with what's in the cloud database. An incredibly precise ruler isn't of much use if your vision is blurry," he explained. "Our work involves employing computer vision techniques to refine the vehicle's ability to continually locate itself with respect to HERE's cloud-based service," said Wong. "That requires real-time images of the street and surrounding objects derived from cameras, LiDAR [a laser-based range-finding technology], and other on-board sensors." The researchers added that this precision is also important because automobiles connected to HERE's HD Live Map service will deliver data to the cloud on road conditions, traffic, weather, obstacles, speed limits, and other variables, allowing the service to upgrade nearly in real-time to reflect changing conditions. "3D computer vision and Deep Neural Network are the technologies driving the development of high- definition live maps for self-driving cars," said Xin Chen, HERE senior engineering manager and research scientist. "We're excited to kick off a long-term research collaboration with Professors Wong and Fang individually based upon their expertise in this domain as well as with NYU as a top institution for research and learning in the field." "The convergence of cybersecurity, big data, wireless technology, and artificial intelligence is already revolutionizing how people live and travel, and it holds the promise of safer transportation for billions across the globe," said NYU Dean of Engineering Katepalli R. Sreenivasan. "We gratefully acknowledge this research gift funding from HERE, which will advance the important work of Professors Wong and Fang and the students assisting them in this new frontier." The HERE mapping project joins a number of recent initiatives at NYU Tandon addressing safer and smarter transportation. The U.S. Department of Transportation selected a research consortium led by NYU Tandon Department of Civil and Urban Engineering researchers to become the first Tier 1 University Transportation Center (UTC) in New York City, dedicated to using data to make every mode of surface transportation - from walking through mass transit - more efficient and safe. Another venture - headed by a cybersecurity research team in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering - is developing the first free, open-source method for automakers to secure software updates. Uptane will protect vehicles from cyber criminals and cyber war while providing the auto industry with an inexpensive and quick way to install safety fixes. The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, the founding date for both the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture and the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly). A January 2014 merger created a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within NYU, the country's largest private research university, and is closely connected to engineering programs at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates Future Labs focused on start-up businesses in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


News Article | October 26, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

NYU Tandon opens registration to New York City school teams; National Science Foundation funds novel summer program to teach robotics and entrepreneurship to those willing to establish elective high school courses BROOKLYN, New York - The NYU Tandon School of Engineering is issuing a call for New York City high schools to join a novel summer program that will bring together teams of teachers and their students who will learn robotics then take their knowledge back to their schools to establish elective courses in the STEM subjects: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The National Science Foundation's Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) program recently awarded more than $1 million to the three-year project, which will combine robotics and entrepreneurial education to improve teacher practices and student outcomes. Each summer, two teachers and four students from eight high schools across New York City will learn, build, and evaluate robots and related technology at NYU Tandon, then implement elective robotics classes and capstone projects at their schools. Twenty-four schools will participate in all. After two weeks of robotics training at NYU Tandon, the student-teacher teams will embark upon a week-long challenge in which they will design, build, and test their robots. Industry experts will challenge the teams during the fourth week to build robots to address real-world problems - ones encountered in the medical or energy fields, for example. "Thanks to Professor Vikram Kapila and our Center for K12 STEM Education, NYU Tandon has a successful history of sharing our passion for engineering and technology with the broader community around us," said Dean Katepalli R. Sreenivasan. "This new program is particularly compelling because of the way faculty from so many disciplines embraced the challenge of building sustainable STEM programs in underserved New York City schools. I look forward to their success in preparing a new generation of teachers in the use of technology for the larger good of society." "The project is a sophisticated model for the integration of engineering, robotics, and entrepreneurship in a program that prepares students for the real world," said Dr. Robert L. Russell, NSF program director-Division on Research and Learning, Education and Human Resources. "Students and their teachers will learn together by designing solutions to real-world problems and they will learn how to take their ideas to market. Dr. Kapila and his team have designed a project that will make a real contribution by researching important factors for developing our future engineers." The NYU Tandon researchers heading the program previously demonstrated that robotics can indeed engage students: In a prior NSF-funded project headed by Kapila, 70 percent of middle and high school participants improved their performance by a half or a full letter grade. He and collaborators also conduct research experiences for teachers at NYU Tandon, including one NSF-funded summer program that introduces teachers to elements of entrepreneurship and deploys them in industry to gain first-hand knowledge of potential career paths for their students. This element is particularly important for the schools in NYU Tandon's teacher programs, which serve minorities traditionally under-represented in the STEM fields. The newest project, titled "ITEST: Promoting Robotic Design and Entrepreneurship Experiences among Students and Teachers," will impact 1,200 students over the three years and countless more in the following years. Collaborating with Kapila is an interdisciplinary team of experts including NYU Steinhardt Professor of Science Education and Chair of the Department of Teaching and Learning Catherine Milne; NYU Tandon Professors Jin Kim Montclare from the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Oded Nov from the Department of Technology Management and Innovation, Magued Iskander from the Department of Civil and Urban Engineering, and Maurizio Porfiri from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; and the Tandon Center for K12 Education's Jenny Listman and Ben Esner. New York City's public high schools may self-nominate by identifying two teachers with at least three years of experience in the physical sciences, mathematics, or pre-engineering. Schools will be evaluated on student demographics, STEM course offerings, STEM-focused co-curricular programs, and their ability and commitment to offer a two-semester robotics and entrepreneurship elective. Winning schools will then select two male and two female students from among their sophomores and juniors. The students must demonstrate an aptitude for STEM studies or be promising young people with underdeveloped skills. Participating teachers and students will receive a stipend. For more information or to apply, email vkapila@nyu.edu and k12stem@poly.edu with subject header "ITEST inquiry" or visit http://engineering. . About the NYU Tandon School of Engineering The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, when the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture as well as the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly) were founded. Their successor institutions merged in January 2014 to create a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within the country's largest private research university and is closely connected to engineering programs in NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates business incubators in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


News Article | February 23, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BROOKLYN, New York - Researchers at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering have devised a method by which patients requiring repetitive rehabilitative exercises, such as those prescribed by physical therapists, can voluntarily contribute to scientific projects in which massive data collection and analysis is needed. Citizen science empowers people with little to no scientific training to participate in research led by professional scientists in different ways. The benefit of such an activity is often bidirectional, whereby professional scientists leverage the effort of a large number of volunteers in data collection or analysis, while the volunteers increase their knowledge on the topic of the scientific endeavor. Tandon researchers added the benefit of performing what can sometimes be boring or painful exercise regimes in a more appealing yet still therapeutic manner. The citizen science activity they employed entailed the environmental mapping of a polluted body of water (in this case Brooklyn's Gowanus Canal) with a miniature instrumented boat, which was remotely controlled by the participants through their physical gestures, as tracked by a low-cost motion capture system that does not require the subject to don special equipment. The researchers demonstrated that the natural user interface offers an engaging and effective means for performing environmental monitoring tasks. At the same time, the citizen science activity increased the commitment of the participants, leading to a better motion performance, quantified through an array of objective indices. Visiting Researcher Eduardo Palermo (of Sapienza University of Rome), Post-doctoral Researcher Jeffrey Laut, Professor of Technology Management and Innovation Oded Nov, late Research Professor Paolo Cappa, and Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Maurizio Porfiri provided subjects with a Microsoft Kinect sensor, a markerless human motion tracker capable of estimating three-dimensional coordinates of human joints that was initially designed for gaming but has since been widely repurposed as an input device for natural user interfaces. They asked participants to pilot the boat, controlling thruster speed and steering angle, by lifting one arm away from the trunk and using wrist motions, in effect, mimicking one widely adopted type of rehabilitative exercises based on repetitively performing simple movements with the affected arm. Their results suggest that an inexpensive, off-the-shelf device can offer an engaging means to contribute to important scientific tasks while delivering relevant and efficient physical exercises. "The study constitutes a first and necessary step toward rehabilitative treatments of the upper limb through citizen science and low-cost markerless optical systems," Porfiri explains. "Our methodology expands behavioral rehabilitation by providing an engaging and fun natural user interface, a tangible scientific contribution, and an attractive low-cost markerless technology for human motion capture." The paper, "A Natural User Interface to Integrate Citizen Science and Physical Exercise," has been published by the Public Library of Science (PLoS) and is available at http://journals. . Research was supported by the National Science Foundation. About the New York University Tandon School of Engineering The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, the founding date for both the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture and the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly). A January 2014 merger created a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within NYU, the country's largest private research university, and is closely connected to engineering programs at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates Future Labs focused on start-up businesses in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


News Article | November 14, 2016
Site: www.prnewswire.com

BROOKLYN, N.Y., Nov. 14, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Students from high schools through doctoral programs throughout North America, the Middle East, North Africa, and India competed in the final rounds of the world's largest student-run security games, the 13th annual New York...


News Article | February 28, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BROOKLYN, New York - Colloidal particles, used in a range of technical applications including foods, inks, paints, and cosmetics, can self-assemble into a remarkable variety of densely-packed crystalline structures. For decades, though, researchers have been trying to coax colloidal spheres to arranging themselves into much more sparsely populated lattices in order to unleash potentially valuable optical properties. These structures, called photonic crystals, could increase the efficiency of lasers, further miniaturize optical components, and vastly increase engineers' ability to control the flow of light. A team of engineers and scientists from the NYU Tandon School of Engineering Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, the NYU Center for Soft Matter Research, and Sungkyunkwan University School of Chemical Engineering in the Republic of Korea report they have found a pathway toward the self-assembly of these elusive photonic crystal structures never assembled before on the sub-micrometer scale (one micrometer is about 100 times smaller than the diameter of a strand of human hair). The research, which appears in the journal Nature Materials, introduces a new design principle based on preassembled components of the desired superstructure, much as a prefabricated house begins as a collection of pre-built sections. The researchers report they were able to assemble the colloidal spheres into diamond and pyrochlore crystal structures - a particularly difficult challenge because so much space is left unoccupied. The team, comprising Etienne Ducrot, a post-doctoral researcher at the NYU Center for Soft Matter Research; Mingxin He, a doctoral student in chemical and biomolecular engineering at NYU Tandon; Gi-Ra Yi of Sungkyunkwan University; and David J. Pine, chair of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NYU Tandon School of Engineering and a NYU professor of physics in the NYU College of Arts and Science, took inspiration from a metal alloy of magnesium and copper that occurs naturally in diamond and pyrochlore structures as sub-lattices. They saw that these complex structures could be decomposed into single spheres and tetrahedral clusters (four spheres permanently bound). To realize this in the lab, they prepared sub-micron plastic colloidal clusters and spheres, and employed DNA segments bound to their surface to direct the self-assembly into the desired superstructure. "We are able to build those complex structures because we are not starting with single spheres as building blocks, but with pre-assembled parts already 'glued' together," Ducrot said. "We fill the structural voids of the diamond lattice with an interpenetrated structure, the pyrochlore, that happens to be as valuable as the diamond lattice for future photonic applications." Ducrot said open colloidal crystals, such as those with diamond and pyrochlore configurations, are desirable because, when composed of the right material, they may possess photonic band gaps -- ranges of light frequency that cannot propagate through the structure -- meaning that they could be for light what semiconductors are for electrons. "This story has been a long time in the making as those material properties have been predicted 26 years ago but until now, there was no practical pathway to build them," he said. "To achieve a band gap in the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum, the particles need to be on the order of 150 nanometers, which is in the colloidal range. In such a material, light should travel with no dissipation along a defect, making possible the construction of chips based on light." Pine said that self-assembly technology is critical to making production of these crystals economically feasible because creating bulk quantities of crystals with lithography techniques at the correct scale would be extremely costly and very challenging. "Self-assembly is therefore a very appealing way to inexpensively create crystals with a photonic band gap in bulk quantities," Pine said. This research was funded by the U.S. Army Research Office under a Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) grant. About the New York University Tandon School of Engineering The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, the founding date for both the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture and the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly). A January 2014 merger created a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within NYU, the country's largest private research university, and is closely connected to engineering programs at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates Future Labs focused on start-up businesses in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit http://engineering. .


News Article | September 30, 2016
Site: www.rdmag.com

Scientists have long suspected that the way materials behave on the nanoscale – that is when particles have dimensions of about 1–100 nanometres – is different from how they behave on any other scale. A new paper in the journal Chemical Science provides concrete proof that this is the case. The laws of thermodynamics govern the behaviour of materials in the macro world, while quantum mechanics describes behaviour of particles at the other extreme, in the world of single atoms and electrons. But in the middle, on the order of around 10–100,000 molecules, something different is going on. Because it's such a tiny scale, the particles have a really big surface-area-to-volume ratio. This means the energetics of what goes on at the surface become very important, much as they do on the atomic scale, where quantum mechanicsis often applied. Classical thermodynamics breaks down. But because there are so many particles, and there are many interactions between them, the quantum model doesn't quite work either. And because there are so many particles doing different things at the same time, it's difficult to simulate all their interactions using a computer. It's also hard to gather much experimental information, because we haven't yet developed the capacity to measure behaviour on such a tiny scale. This conundrum becomes particularly acute when we're trying to understand crystallisation, the process by which particles, randomly distributed in a solution, can form highly ordered crystal structures, given the right conditions. Chemists don't really understand how this works. How do around 1018 molecules, moving around in solution at random, come together to form a micro- to millimetre size ordered crystal? Most remarkable perhaps is the fact that in most cases every crystal is ordered in the same way every time the crystal is formed. However, it turns out that different conditions can sometimes yield different crystal structures. These are known as polymorphs, and they're important in many branches of science including medicine – a drug can behave differently in the body depending on which polymorph it's crystallised in. What we do know so far about the process, at least according to one widely accepted model, is that particles in solution can come together to form a nucleus, and once a critical mass is reached we see crystal growth. The structure of the nucleus determines the structure of the final crystal, that is, which polymorph we get. What we have not known until now is what determines the structure of the nucleus in the first place, and that happens on the nanoscale. In this paper, the authors have used mechanochemistry – that is milling and grinding – to obtain nanosizedparticles, small enough that surface effects become significant. In other words, the chemistry of the nanoworld – which structures are the most stable at this scale, and what conditions affect their stability, has been studied for the first time with carefully controlled experiments. And by changing the milling conditions, for example by adding a small amount of solvent, the authors have been able to control which polymorph is the most stable. Professor Jeremy Sanders of the University of Cambridge's Department of Chemistry, who led the work, said "It is exciting that these simple experiments, when carried out with great care, can unexpectedly open a new door to understanding the fundamental question of how surface effects can control the stability of nanocrystals." Joel Bernstein, Global Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at NYU Abu Dhabi, and an expert in crystal growthand structure, explains: "The authors have elegantly shown how to experimentally measure and simulate situations where you have two possible nuclei, say A and B, and determine that A is more stable. And they can also show what conditions are necessary in order for these stabilities to invert, and for B to become more stable than A." "This is really news, because you can't make those predictions using classical thermodynamics, and nor is this the quantum effect. But by doing these experiments, the authors have started to gain an understanding of how things do behave on this size regime, and how we can predict and thus control it. The elegant part of the experiment is that they have been able to nucleate A and B selectively and reversibly." One of the key words of chemical synthesis is 'control'. Chemists are always trying to control the properties of materials, whether that's to make a better dye or plastic, or a drug that's more effective in the body. So if we can learn to control how molecules in a solution come together to form solids, we can gain a great deal. This work is a significant first step in gaining that control.

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