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CBE Research Images as Art!

Three research images were selected as winners of the 2024 CBE Research Image and Art Contest, all of whom were CBE graduate students. The first place went to “Corrosion’s Supernova” by Abhirup Basu from the Velev laboratory. Second place went to “Winter Night Bloom” by Yug Chandra Saraswat from the Hsiao laboratory. Third place went to “Fiber Symphony” by Darshana Malusare from the Khan laboratory.

Corrosion's Supernova
Corrosion’s Supernova

“Corrosion’s Supernova” shows the delamination of a polymer coating on an aluminum substrate is shown. In this work, a 4 cm scribe (yellow) was made on a polymer-coated substrate (brown).  Upon exposure to concentrated hydrochloric acid vapor for one hour, delamination of the coating occurred after one day at 40 °C and 85% relative humidity resulting in the green/hairy failure zone. The image was captured using a stereo microscope and was reconstructed using artificial intelligence software (Runway) to show the supernova effect. The image was made by Abhirup Basu, who is from Kolkata, India. Abhirup joined the CBE department in January 2021, and his research is primarily focused on two main areas. One of the primary goals is to design and synthesize new types of soft colloidal particles that respond to external stimuli like magnetic and electric fields. The other focus is to study the performance of polymer coatings on aluminum substrates against corrosion. By investigating the structure-property relationships of these coatings via optical and chemical characterization, we aim to elucidate the mechanisms behind their degradation over time. This work has practical implications in industries where corrosion protection is crucial, such as aerospace, automotive, and marine engineering. He aspires to continue his career in research-based roles, whether as a postdoctoral researcher or within a company setting. He wants to contribute to cutting-edge advancements and drive innovation in fields such as soft matter physics, materials science, and chemical engineering.

Winter night bloom
Winter Night Bloom

“Winter Night Bloom” is an agarose gel composite containing poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) particles and soft dendritic chitosan is imaged using confocal laser scanning microscopy. The mechanical properties of the base agarose matrix are enhanced by the addition of both PMMA and chitosan.  Our goal is to develop a micromechanical understanding of the effects of the particle fillers and to correlate gel microstructure with rheological properties, with a specific interest in the yield stress and elastic modulus. The image was made by Yug Chandra Saraswat, who is from India. Yug joined the CBE department in Spring 2021, and his research focuses on shear driven yielding in dense colloidal suspensions and biopolymer gels. His aim is to work in academia as a professor of chemical engineering in India.

Fiber Symphony
Fiber Symphony

“Fiber Symphony” is a silica-fiber composite in which the fibers are spunbond bicomponent sheath core fibers. The core of the fiber is made of polypropylene and the sheath is made of polyether block amide (Pebax). The silica particles were aerosolized and deposited on the fibers. The image shows the deposition pattern of the silica on the fibers.The image was obtained using a Keyence optical microscope (VHX-950F) with VH-Z250 R lens in the Fiber and Polymer Science lab at NC State’s Nonwovens Institute (NWI). The image was made by Darshana Malusare, who is from India. Darshana joined the CBE department in Fall 2022. Her research focuses on synthesis of composite materials from metal organic frameworks (MOFs) and nonwovens. These materials find applications in various fields including gas separation, filtration, catalysis. Going forward, she is hoping to engage in interdisciplinary research efforts that benefit society and promote sustainable practices.

Right to left: Yug Chandra Saraswat (2nd place), Darshana Malusare (3rd place), Abhirup Basu (1st place)
Right to left: Yug Chandra Saraswat (2nd place), Darshana Malusare (3rd place), Abhirup Basu (1st place)