Where water and oil meet, a two-dimensional world exists. This interface presents a potentially useful set of properties for chemists and engineers, but getting anything more complex than a soap molecule to stay there and behave predictably remains a challenge.
Oil-based liquid crystals are ubiquitous; a deep understanding of their properties is behind the displays found in most computer monitors, televisions and smartphones. Water-based liquid crystals are less well understood, though their biocompatibility makes them a potential candidate for a variety of biological and medical applications.
By Madeleine Stone @themadstone
None of us would be alive if sperm cells didn’t know how to swim, or if the cilia in our lungs couldn’t prevent fluid buildup. But we know very little about the dynamics of so-called “living fluids,” those containing cells, microorganisms or other biological structures.
President Amy Gutmann today announced the selection of five undergraduates at the University of Pennsylvania as the inaugural President’s Engagement Prize recipients. Awarded annually to Penn students to design and undertake fully-funded local, national or global engagement projects during the first year after they graduate, the President’s Engagement Prizes underscore the high priority that Penn places on educating students to put their knowledge to work for the betterment of humankind.
By Sarah Welsh
Cancer starts with a single cell going haywire. What is it about that one cell that makes it different from the rest, setting it on a path of destruction? A new program at the University of Pennsylvania may help find an answer to that and many other questions.
WHO: Masha Alekhina and Nadya Tolokonnikova, Russian conceptual artists and founding members of the art collective Pussy Riot
WHAT: “A Conversation With Pussy Riot”
The pistons in your car engine rub up against their cylinder walls thousands of times a minute; without lubrication in the form of motor oil, they and other parts of the engine would quickly wear away, causing engine failure.
The field of metamaterials is all about making structures that have physical properties that aren’t found in nature. Predicting what kinds of structures would have those traits is one challenge; physically fabricating them is quite another, as they often require precise arrangement of constituent materials on the smallest scales.