Polymers owe much of their utility to their flexibility and morphology. For a long time it was thought that crystals could never replicate those properties because of their relative rigidity. We discovered a class of nanowires that challenges this belief and that shows polymer-like morphology and growth kinetic. It is the first example of a crystal that showcases the unique properties of polymer molecules.
The student will be trained in synthesizing and characterizing these nanowires, and will help us understand (i) how their conformation in solution changes with temperature, and (ii) their use as resists for photolithography.
Program Mentor: Ludovico Cadementari, assistant professor, Materials Science and Engineering, Iowa State University