Beckman faculty member Ioannis Chasiotis is finding new ways to understand the fundamental mechanics that underlie microscale and nanoscale devices.
A spur of the moment materials lab innovation may lead to entirely new forms of electronics and that's just one of the ways in which Beckman Institute researchers have made new discoveries. To read more, see the Winter 2007 issue of Synergy.
Zenzi Griffin credits the human and technological resources at the Beckman Institute for helping to launch her career as a psychology professor and researcher.
The Beckman Institute Fellows program allows recent Ph.D.s an opportunity to do highly focused, interdisciplinary research without the burdens of teaching or taking classes. The four 2005 Beckman Fellows are about midway through their appointments— long enough to have some perspective on their experience but at a stage where a post-Fellows life is growing closer.
Whether it’s a sudden insight or careful attention to detail, the path to scientific discovery has taken many directions at the Beckman Institute.
Minuscule chain mail has been manufactured by a team at the University of Illinois that has borrowed techniques from the microchip industry. The fabric Jonathan Engel and Beckman researcher Chang Liu have produced has a similar strength to nylon and can conduct electricity.
Beckman Institute researcher Arthur Kramer speaks with Ira Dreyfuss about the connection between exercise and increases in the brain's white and gray matter in older adults.
The Beckman Institute Graduate Student Seminar Series presents the work of outstanding graduate students working in Beckman research groups. The seminars are open to the UIUC campus. The next seminar takes place on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at noon in Room 1005 Beckman Institute.
The Beckman Institute Imaging Technology Group's entry, Stretchable Silicon, which describes the research of Beckman's John Rogers, won 3rd place in the recent Materials Research Society Scientific Film Festival.
The recent reorganization of the Molecular and Electronic Nanostructures research initiative is but one example of how adapting to change in a research environment is an integral part of the Beckman Institute's mission.
Joseph Lyding has been using the ultrastable scanning tunneling microscope (STM) he invented for numerous research projects at the Beckman Institute ever since he built ultra-high vacuum chambers to house STMs here in 1992. Now, by using STM technology and a technique called Dry Contact Transfer, Lyding's group is paving a new way toward the much sought after goal of integrating carbon nanotubes with advanced silicon technology.
Using a mask-based approach, chemists at the University of Texas at Austin can rapidly fabricate whatever shape they want through multiphoton photolithography. "Two-photon lithography is extremely powerful because it enables the formation of unusual three-dimensional micro- and nanostructures that would be difficult or impossible to fabricate using other methods," says John A. Rogers, a Beckman researcher and U. of I. materials science professor. Rogers also has developed a mask-based approach to two-photon lithography that allows the formation of 3-D lattices in a single exposure step.
A University of Florida study has shown that older adults who received just 10 sessions of mental training showed long-lasting improvements in memory, reasoning and speed of processing five years later. "Showing that training gains are maintained over five years is a stunning result," says Beckman researcher and U. of I. educational psychology professor Elizabeth Stine-Morrow, "because it suggests that a fairly modest intervention in practicing cognitive skills can have relatively long-term effects."
Scientists exploring the physics of hearing have found an underlying molecular cause for one form of deafness, and a conceptual connection between deafness and the organization of liquid crystals, which are used in flat-panel displays. "We found the structure of the bundles changes dramatically when normal espin is replaced with espin mutants that cause deafness," says Gerard Wong, a Beckman affiliate and professor of materials science and engineering, of physics, and of bioengineering at Illinois.
Thanks to a generous gift from the family of a former civil engineering professor and the work of the Beckman Institute's Hank Kaczmarski, Champaign's Orpheum Children's Science Museum has a new exhibit that gives kids and other visitors a tugboat pilot's eye-view of Illinois waterways.
Researchers say you can take measures to increase cognitive function and delay dementia, even Alzheimer's disease. "My advice: Travel, go to the theater, go to museums, take a dance class," says Denise Park, a U. of I. professor of psychology and researcher at the U. of I.'s Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology.
Stephen Sligar's work with Nanodiscs is giving science a new tool for research and medical intervention.