Breakfast Club Seminar

Event Details
  • Date/Time:
    • Tuesday January 12, 2016
      12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
  • Location: Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering & Biosciences, Room 1128
  • Phone: (404) 894-6228
  • URL:
  • Email:
  • Fee(s):
  • Extras:

Colly Mitchell


Summary Sentence: "Toroidal Fun" - Alberto Fernández De Las Nieves, Ph.D. - Georgia Tech

Full Summary: The Petit Institute Breakfast Club seminar series was started with the spirit of the Institute's interdisciplinary mission in mind and started to feature local Petit Institute faculty member's research in a seminar format. Faculty are often asked to speak at other universities and conferences, but rarely present at their home institution, this seminar series is an attempt to close that gap. The Petit Institute Breakfast Club is open to anyone in the bio-community.

  • Breakfast Club Seminar Series Breakfast Club Seminar Series

"Toroidal Fun"

Alberto Fernández De Las Nieves, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
School of Physics

Georgia Tech

We study the physics of soft materials and also do physics with soft materials. In this talk, I will present an overview of some of our recent work involving, in one or another way, the use of tori. We will cover how we make toroidal and how we stabilize them against surface tension instabilities; this altogether provides an interesting way to 3D print materials. We will then discuss what we use toroidal droplets and hydrogels for. This includes the study of conventional and active liquid crystals confined to toroidal spaces, and addressing whether geometry affects cell behavior. I will then leave the torus and briefly discuss our work with colloidal hydrogels and fire ant aggregations.

Research focus
Soft materials are materials whose properties are determined by internal structures with dimensions between atomic sizes and macroscopic scales. They are characterized by energies that are typically comparable to KBT. As a result, they have low elastic moduli, often ~1-10 Pascals. Typical soft materials include liquid crystals, polymers, colloidal suspensions and emulsion drops. These materials, unlike conventional simple liquids, are locally heterogeneous and can have broken symmetries that affect their physical properties. Hence, although they often exhibit liquid-like behavior, soft materials also often exhibit properties of solids.

Our laboratory studies the physics of soft materials with a focus on the connection between microscopic order and macroscopic properties. The underlying theme is to pursue basic understanding and address fundamental questions. However, we also address applied problems and pursue industrial collaborations since many of the materials we study can be viewed as model systems for those that are often used in applications.

The Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience, an internationally recognized hub of multidisciplinary research at the Georgia Institute of Technology, brings engineers, scientists, and clinicians together to solve some of the world’s most complex health challenges. With 17 research centers, more than 170 faculty members, and $24 million in state-of-the-art facilities, the Petit Institute is translating scientific discoveries into game-changing solutions to solve real-world problems.

Related Links

Additional Information

In Campus Calendar

Wallace H. Coulter Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience (IBB)

Invited Audience
Undergraduate students, Faculty/Staff, Graduate students
graduate students, IBB
  • Created By: Colly Mitchell
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Nov 9, 2015 - 10:24am
  • Last Updated: Apr 13, 2017 - 5:17pm