Velev Research Group
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering North Carolina State University
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March 2013: Prof. Orlin Velev selected as an Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor for 2012-13.

March 2013: Cardinal Club dinner during Graduate Recruitment Weekend

January 2013: Rachita Sharma wins 2nd place in the oral presentation and Stephanie Lam wins 1st place in the poster presentation at the annual departmental Edward M. Schoenborn Symposium

December 2012: Hyung-Jun and Ju-Hee on the graduation day with Dr. Velev and Dr. Dickey.

December 2012: Dr. Simeon Stoyanov and Dr. Eddie Pelan having dinner with Velev group members.

August 2012: Dr. Etienne Palleau moves back to France and joins CEA Saclay as a postdoctoral research associate.

March 2012: Dr. Elena Blanco leaves Velev Group to continue her career as a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Edinburgh

In order to celebrate Elena's new appointment, the Velev Group met at Boylan Bridge Brewpub. We would like to congratulate Elena and we wish her the best on her future endeavors in Scotland! She will be missed greatly!

Members of the Velev Group relaxing at Boylan Bridge(left). The dynamic foams research duo(center). Elena holding the newest member of the Velev Group (right).

March 2012: Cardinal Club dinner during Graduate Recruitment Weekend

Members of the Velev Group enjoying the festivities during Graduate Recruitment Weekend

December 2011: Research from Velev Group makes NC state highlight list for second year in a row

Research by Hyung Jun, in collaboration with Ju-Hee So (Dr. Dickey Research Group, NC State), on soft matter memory devices has been recognized as one of the research highlights of the year at NC State (see link for "Soft Memory").

His work on water-gel-based solar devices was honored last year as well (see link for "Artificial Leaves").

December 2011: Dr. Simeon Stoyanov visits the Velev Group

Dr. Simeon Stoyanov is currently the Lead Scientist in Colloids and Interfaces at Unilever R&D in Vlaardingen, the Netherlands and visiting professor in the Laboratory of Physical Chemistry and Colloid Science in Wageningen University, the Netherlands. Dr. Stoyanov spent a few days visiting the Velev Group to discuss and initiate a new, large project with Unilever.

The visit included a tour of our lab facilities as well as a day long seminar of individual presenations.

The Velev Group relaxes with Dr. Stoyanov after a long day of science.

December 2011: Dr. Stoyan Smoukov leaves Velev Group to continue his career as a faculty member at Cambridge University

In order to celebrate Stoyan's new appointment, the Velev Group went on a paintball trip in November. We would like to congratulate Stoyan and we wish him the best on his future endeavors! He will be missed greatly!

The Velev Group and friends during a break from the paintball action

Members of the Velev Group ready for battle

October 2011: Dr. Orlin Velev is NC State Innovator of the Year

INVISTA Professor Orlin Velev has been selected by the NC State Office of Technology Transfer to receive the 2011 Innovator of the Year award. NC State Engineering

September 2011: Velev Group involved with the Triangle MRSEC

The Velev Group is excited to be a key participant in the newly developed Triangle Materials Research Science and Engineering Center.

"The Triangle Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC), launched in September 2011, is a national resource for materials science and engineering research and education located in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area of North Carolina. The MRSEC research team encompasses faculty and students at Duke University, North Carolina State University, North Carolina Central University and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. The MRSEC will have a major national and international impact in soft matter materials science through generation of new fundamental insights and theoretical understanding, new design principles, and new applications and uses for colloidal and macromolecular materials and their higher order assemblies." Triangle MRSEC

July 2011: Dr. Orlin Velev named a fellow of the American Chemical Society

Due to his professional contributions and service to the American Chemical Society, he was honored at the organization's national meeting in August and recognized in Chemical & Engineering News.

July 2011: Quasi-liquid diodes and memristors based on hydrogel and a liquid metal receive media coverage

Research by Hyung Jun, in collaboration with Ju-Hee So (Dr. Dickey Research Group, NC State), was recently published in Advanced Materials. This work demonstrates a new class of diodes and memristors composed entirely of soft materials and has been featured in several science news websites.

Koo, H.-J.; So, J.-H.; Dickey, M. D.; Velev, O. D. Towards All-Soft Matter Circuits: Prototypes of Quasi-Liquid Devices with Memristor Characteristics. Advanced Materials 2011, 23, 3559–3564.

So, J.-H.; Koo, H.-J.; Dickey, M. D.; Velev, O. D.; Ionic Current Rectification in Soft Matter Diodes with Liquid Metal Electrodes. Advanced Functional Materials Accepted.

Soft Memory Device Opens Door to New Biocompatible Electronics, Science Daily

Memristors with a Twist: Quasi-liquid Soft Matter Foreshadows Biocompatible Electronics and Flexible Robots, Physorg

Soft memory device opens door to new biocompatible electronics, Nanowerk

Jelly-like Memory Device Could Interact with Your Cells,

Soft memory device opens door to new biocompatible electronics, Science Blog

Soft memory device opens door to new biocompatible electronics, redOrbit

A prototype circuit device with cross bar array of entirely soft material-based diodes and memristors.

September 2010: Work on soft matter solar cells receives media coverage

The research by Hyung Jun which resulted in solar cells based on aqueous gel was recently published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry. This work has also been featured in several science news websites.

Koo, H.-J.; Chang, S. T.; Slocik, J. M.; Naik, R. R.; Velev, O. D. Aqueous soft matter based photovoltaic devices. Journal of Materials Chemistry.

Mimicking Nature, Water-Based ‘Artificial Leaf’ Produces Electricity, Science Daily

Artificial Leaves Act as Solar Cells, Imitate Nature, DailyTech

True Green Energy? Water-based Artificial Leaf Produces Electricity, Science 2.0

One of the aqueous gel solar cells.

July 2010: Stephanie presents work on magnetic foams in Berlin

From Stephanie:

I recently joined Professors Velev, Genzer, Hall, and Gubbins and graduate students Pruthesh Vargantwar (Spontak Group) and Liangliang Huang (Gubbins Group) to represent the Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Department at NC State at a conference of the International Graduate Research Training Group (IGRTG), hosted by Professor Martin Schoen from Technical University (TU) Berlin. The conference was held at a resort (Hotel Döllnsee-Schorfheide) at a remote location two hours outside of Berlin and was formulated around participating researchers who were experimentally studying and theoretically modeling the properties and interactions at particle and protein interfaces. The delegates from NCSU met researchers from TU Berlin and the Max-Planck Institute performing related research and presented their own research to their German counterparts. The conference was mainly composed of research presentations by the attending professors and graduate students, a poster session, and networking. Although this may sound like a lot of work, the conference was a blast! In the end, the attending graduate students met a lot of potential collaborators and students who will be studying at NC State in the near future, and learned a lot about complementary research being performed on the other side of the Atlantic. And, after the conference, since I was already on the continent, I took a short vacation to visit Berlin, Munich and Prague.

Stephanie at the Reichstag building in Berlin

June 2010: Burak and Hyung Jun present research at the 84th ACS Colloid and Surface Science Symposium in Akron, OH

Two graduate students from the Velev Group, Burak Uçar and Hyung Jun Koo, went to the University of Akron in Ohio for the 84th ACS Colloids Surface Science Symposium, a successor to the 82nd Symposium which we hosted at NC State two years ago. This year's symposium was chaired by H. Michael Cheung from the University of Akron and J. Adin Mann, Jr. from Case Western Reserve University. The meeting was relatively intimate, including more than 200 oral and poster presentations. Burak gave an oral presentation on the first day of the technical sessions titled "Programmable Microfluidic Materials with Switchable Shape, Stiffness, and Color". The poster session took place on the same day afternoon, where Hyung Jun presented "Modeling of Solute Transport in Biomimetic Solar and Fuel Cells with Soft Matter Microfluidic Networks". Hyung Jun also had an oral presentation, "Aqueous Soft Matter Based Photovoltaic Devices," the following day. That evening we attended the very nicely organized Symposium Banquet at the Football Stadium Club. On the last day of the conference, after the half day technical session, we took a short city tour in Akron and then returned to Raleigh.

May 2010: Dr. Velev receives 2010 Alcoa Foundation Distinguished Engineering Research Award

July 2009: Dr. Velev earns new title, INVISTA Professor

The College of Engineering has announced that Professor Velev has been named the INVISTA Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering on the basis of his research accomplishments since coming to NCSU in 2001. This position is sponsored by INVISTA, a large producer of polymer and fiber products.

March 2009: Sumit Gangwal wins first place in Engineering category of the NCSU Graduate Student Research Symposium

Sumit's award and research on the behavior of Janus particles in electric fields are featured in a story on the Graduate School webpage.

July 2008: Research on colorful and spherical nanoscale assemblies on superhydrophobic surfaces is featured on the cover of Advanced Materials and hits the news headlines

Rastogi, V.; Melle, S.; Calderon, O. G.; Garcia, A. A.; Marquez, M.; Velev, O. D. Synthesis of light-diffracting assemblies from microspheres and nanoparticles in droplets on a superhydrophobic surface. Advanced Materials 2008, 20, 4263–4268.

Colloidal assemblies: Diffracting droplets, Nature Chemistry

Nanojewels made easy, Science Daily

February 2008: Research on induced-charge electrophoresis of metallodielectric particles is published in Physical Review Letters and featured in news stories

Gangwal, S.; Cayre, O. J.; Bazant, M. Z.; Velev, O. D. Physical Review Letters 2008, 100, 058302.

'Two-faced' particles act like tiny submarines,

December 2007: Shalini weds, defends, and graduates

Shalini Gupta became the fourth member of the Velev group to defend her Ph.D. on September 11, 2007. Before doing so (and passing with flying colors), Shalini traveled to India to be wed to her long term fiancée, Ashish. She then settled in London, where she has begun a post-doctoral appointment at Imperial College. We would like to congratulate Shalini on all of her accomplishments! Good luck with everything you do Shalini! The group will miss you dearly!

Shalini on her graduation day with her advisors, Dr. Kilpatrick (left) and Dr. Velev (right).

February 2007: Research on self-propelling particles published in Nature Materials and highlighted in the media

Chang, S. T.; Paunov, V. N.; Petsev, D. N.; Velev, O. D. Remotely powered self-propelling particles and micropumps based on miniature diodes. Nature Materials 2007, 6, 235–240.

Researchers Create Tiny Devices That Can Propel Themselves In Liquid, Perform Other Functions, Science Daily

Diode propulsion could power microbots, New Scientist

May 2006: Dr. Orlin Velev receives the prestigious Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar award

Dr. Velev is selected as a recipient of the prestigious Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award. Dr. Velev is also recognized as an outstanding teacher in the College of Engineering and inducted into the NCSU Academy of Outstanding teachers.

May 2006: Ketan defends thesis

Ketan Bhatt took sometime out of his busy schedule of solving crosswords to do some research and eventually get a Doctor of Philosophy. Everybody enjoyed his cool presentation and the tiramisu cake afterwords.

With congratulations from Orlin, Ketan cuts the cake celebrating his successful defense (left). The group joins Ketan for another celebration at Royal India (center and right).

April 2006: Stellacci presents a seminar at NCSU and visits the Velev Group

Dr. Francesco Stellacci of Massachusetts Institute of Technology visited our department and gave an interesting presentation titled "Complex Supramolecular Self-Assembly: A Tool to Generate Novel Nano-Materials and Printing Techniques." This seminar was a joint event with the Department of Physics. Dr. Stellacci showed how patterned DNA self assembled monolayers can be used as masters for a novel printing technique for organic materials called Supramolecular NanoStamping (SuNs). This method, like the DNA/RNA information transfer, uses the reversible assembly of DNA double strands as a way of transferring patterns from one surface to another. One of the main advantages of SuNs is that multiple DNA strands (each encoding different information) can be printed at the same time, thus allowing for a complex chemical pattern to be formed, much like Gutenberg movable type. Dr. Stellacci graduated the Politecnico di Milano in 1998 with a thesis on photochromic materials. He then moved to the University of Arizona as a post-doctoral scholar and worked on two-photon microfabrication of three dimensional metallic structures. In September 2002 he was appointed as Assistant Professor of Materials Science at MIT. We would like to thank Dr. Stellacci for very interesting seminar. And, we hope that he can visit us again sometime in the future.

The group with Dr. Stellacci during his visit. From left to right: Daniel, Suk Tai, Sumit, Shalini, Hartmut, Francesco, Bridgette, Olivier, Orlin, Ketan and Vinayak.

April 2006: Prof. Wagner visits the Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Department at NCSU to give a seminar

Professor Norman Wagner from the University of Delaware gave a very entertaining and captivating lecture entitled "The Rheology of Colloidal & Nanoparticle Dispersions: STF Armor-Nanoparticle Composites for Flexible Ballistic Materials" as part of the department seminar series. His discussion on bullet-proof jackets based on shear-thickening materials was followed by meetings with faculty members and a lunch with post-docs and graduate students.

The next day Professor Wagner attended presentations by some of our graduate students and post-docs as part of a joint project with the University of Delaware. All projects involving manipulation of colloidal systems via electric fields were discussed. Following the morning session, the advances on the joint project were assessed during a very productive lunch meeting. More meetings involving all parties of the joint project are planned and we will be glad to visit the University of Delaware sometime during the summer to keep the collaboration going.

The Velev Group during the visit of Professor Wagner. Standing, from left to right: Daniel, Orlin, Vinayak, Norman, Bridgette, Olivier, Shalini, Sumit, Suk Tai. Seated: Hartmut and Ketan.

April 2006: SERS work featured on the cover of the Journal of Materials Chemistry

This weeks issue of the Journal of Materials Chemistry features the work of Daniel, Brian, and Orlin with a cover illustration and highlight article. They have developed a method for formation of structured porous gold films by convective assembly. These films make excellent substrates for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy.

March 2006: Brian heads to California

A few months after earning a Ph.D., Brian will embark on a road trip to California where he will be a post doc in the research group of Professor Joseph A. Zasadzinski at the University of California, Santa Barbara. We are sad to see him go, but wish him well.

December 2005: Olivier Cayre and Bridgette Budhlall join the group

We have two new members in the group: a new post doc, Olivier Cayre, who joins us from the Surfactant and Colloids Group at the University of Hull, and Bridgette Budhlall, who will be a visiting researcher from Air Products as she makes the transition from industry to academia.

November 2005: Brian becomes a Doctor of Philosophy

Dr. Prevo is what we call Brian now, after he succesfully defended his Ph.D. thesis on November 18. The popularity of the event could be measured from the fact that the defense room was packed with people.

Brian, marking a major achievement, completion of his Ph.D.

August 2005: Our new post doc, Hartmut Wege, has arrived from Hull, England

Yes, finally he's here after months of anticipation. His arrival was delayed by a freak kite-boarding accident (Yes, that's him on crutches in a cast below.), but once he was cleared to fly, off he went to his new home in Raleigh. We're excited to have him here. He brings a great spirit to the office and a great deal of expertise in anisotropic particle synthesis to our lab. (And he makes a mean espresso too!)

June 2005 : Daniel and Shalini head to England for the Surfactants and Colloid Workshop

Daniel and Shalini journeyed to Hull, England for a visit with our research collaborators in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Hull (Surfactants and Colloids Group). During the day the day they exchanged ideas and participated in a workshop where they both presented their latest research. By all accounts the series of seminars was very good, and everyone who participated enjoyed the workshop. This series of visits and seminars has now seen several visits from both sides of the Atlantic and gone on for several years now. It has definitely been a success, and both sides have enjoyed the chance to visit new places, see new people, and learn from each other.

Vesko's group played host, and showed Daniel and Shalini a very good time by cooking them some great meals, and taking them to some great restaurants. As you can see by the picture below (left) with Hartmut (who broke his ankle, delaying his arrival as a post-doc in our group), the weather during their visit was quite good (uncommonly good as some might say). After the official visit, Daniel and Shalini spent the rest of the week touring around various parts of England on their own before meeting up in London to fly back to Raleigh.

Daniel, Shalini, and Harmut at the University of Hull (left) and the group enjoying a night out (right).

Spring 2005: We are finally at home in our new building

In late November 2004, our department began moving from its original home, Riddick labs, a 45+ yr old bldg in need of repair, on NCSU's main campus, to our new building, Engineering Building 1, on NCSU's Centennial campus. The move wasn't quite completed until January, and there were still some ongoing HVAC issues and the like that always occur in a new building. The building is great; it is aesthetically pleasing and very functional. An added asset is its location on Centennial campus, which should help foster collaborations with private companies as well as other university departments located here.

Best of all, there is more space for all of our research in our new lab: we have multiple fume hoods, designated areas for microscopy and spectroscopy, as well as individual bench space for everyone. Additionally, we are all in one large office just down the hall from our lab, instead of spread throughout the 3rd floor of Riddick. Perhaps the most major change is that Dr. Velev's office is no longer just down the hall from the lab (and our offices). He is now on the second floor, relatively removed from the lab, which makes scheduling meetings with him a bit more of a necessity nowadays.

Photos showing the new lab (left), Shalini working at the microscopy/dielectrophesis set up (center), and two of our undergrads (Devdutta and Julian) working on gold nanoparticle concentration (right).

February 2005: Dr. Yeon Hwang, visiting scientist, returns to Korea

In late January 2004, Dr. Yeon Hwang, a lecturer and researcher at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, brought his family to the Raleigh area and proceeded to work in our group for the better part of 2004. His primary project was to investigate antireflective coatings comprised of colloidal particles. As that project got off the ground, he also began expanding and developed an interest in our group's dielectrophoretic particle control efforts.

Over the course of his year here, we hope that he got a good taste of Americana (food, beverages, culture, etc.). His children definitely had an interesting year - a total immersion program as it were - as they attended primary school with other American kids (without having much prior exposure to English). Before he departed, Yeon mentioned that their English still needs some practice, but that their language skills had really improved over the last year (and that cartoons can be good afterall). In any case, working with Yeon was a good experience for the group, and we hope that he and his family have a safe trip back to Seole, Korea where he will jump right back into teaching undergraduates again.

Bye, Yeon, and many more safe journeys for you and your family.

The Velev Group

December 2004: Colloid and Nanoscale Engineering Workshop

In early Dec. 2004, we were visited by a contingent of the same Surfactants and Colloids group that we visited earlier this year. Directly following the MRS fall conference, Dr. "Vesko" Paunov brought with him two graduate students, Pietro Taylor and Olivier Cayre, plus one of his post-docs, Dr. Hartmut Wege.

The workshop was a great forum for exchange between our two research groups. It was fun and quite educational. Orlin started the session off, and talks were given by Daniel, Shalini, Lindsey, and Suk-Tai as well as all the UK visitors. Also in attendance were graduate students from the Khan group, the Van Zanten group, and the Genzer group in our department, as well as professor Orlando Rojas of the Wood and Paper Science Department.

Graduate students enjoying a meal at Brian's home (left) and the group on a visit to Lake Johnson Park (right).

After the workshop, Orlin took Vesko to a posh Durham restaurant, while the graduate students and post-docs convened at Brian's house for an epicurean, multi-ethnic feast. The following day, we took our European guests to lunch at the best pizza place in Raleigh (e.g., Lilly's), and then took a leisurely stroll through Lake Johnson park to work off all the food we'd consumed. After the walk, everyone reconvened for an afternoon of bowling. We had a Hull vs. NCSU tournament, and NCSU (read: Velev group) prevailed. And, even though he may not have been the best UK bowler to grace the lanes, we are eagerly expecting Hartmut to join our group this spring as our new post-doc.

August 2004: Israelachvili visits the Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Department at NCSU to give seminar

On Monday, August 30, 2004, professor Jacob Israelachvili of UC Santa Barbara visited our department and gave a very insightful and entertaining lecture titled "Scaling effects in colloidal and nanoparticle interactions: from the macro- to the pico-scales." This seminar was the first Warren L. McCabe Lecture for the 2004-5 academic year.

These lectures are given by highly renowned researchers, often considered to be at the top of their field, or founders of their field of study. The esteem in which professor Israelachvili is held was clearly visible by both the size and diversity of the audience which included members from many departments, including but not limited to biology, chemistry, chemical engineering, materials science, and wood and paper science.

We in the Velev group (along with Angelica Sanchez , and members of the Genzer and Van Zanten groups within our department) had the pleasure of professor Israelachvili's company during an informal wine and cheese gathering held the Sunday afternoon prior to his seminar. We had a wonderful time discussing many different subjects that afternoon. He proved able to hold his own on topics ranging from surface/materials science to the current state of Argentinean viticulture and enology with many laughs in between. Much to our chagrin, no one had brought along their copy of his famous text, "Intermolecular and Surface Forces", which Israelachvili said he gladly would have autographed. Even so, we would like to thank professor Israelachvili for a wonderful time, and a highly entertaining seminar. We hope that he can visit us again sometime in the future.

Gathering at Dr. Velev's home. From left to right: Chris Kloxin, Ketan Bhatt, Lindsey Jerrim, Shalini Gupta, Suk-Tai Chang, Rajendra Bhat,
Jacob Israelachvili, Brian Prevo, Bin Wei, Orlin Velev, Daniel Kuncicky, and Anka Veleva.

From left to right: Jan Genzer and Jacob Israelachvili listening to a story, Daniel and Orlin taking a break from the action, and Brian debating the merits of Australian wine with Jacob Israelachvili.

July 2004: Rossi departs for the frozen tundra of Boston*

Our post-doc, Rossitza Alargova (aka Rossi) first arrived last summer in early July, 2003, from a research position in Japan. Once she adjusted to our boisterous, interactive group, her kindly persona and excellent experimental credentials made her an asset in the lab, and around the office. In the span of one year, she became an integral component of our group, doing excellent work of her own, as well as offering invaluable experimental assistance and theoretical discussions to the rest of us in the Velev group.

While at NCSU, she'd been living in Raleigh alone, apart from her family. In late June, 2004, with the end of her one year stay at NCSU fast approaching, Rossi decided to move up to the frozen (but at least not friendless) tundra-like parking lot of greater Boston, MA to be with her husband Dimitar who is currently based in the Boston area. From there she will explore her options, and we wish her the best of luck. She will definitely be missed.

Bye, Rossi, and best wishes,

The Velev Group

* There really is no tundra in Boston at all, and the traffic isn't too terrible either, except during rush hour. In fact, New England in general is actually quite pleasant, but we love teasing Rossi about it anyway because we don't want her to leave us here in wonderful Raleigh, NC.

June 2004: Surfactant and Colloid Workshop at University of Hull, UK

We (Orlin, Brian and Ketan) recently attended the Surfactant and Colloids workshop at University of Hull, UK. This presented us with an opportunity to share our research with our European colleagues and for us to listen to their research endeavors. It was a wonderful experience. Brian's account of the trip is here.

The workshop speakers included (front, left to right) Brian Prevo, Ketan Bhatt, (back) Paul Fletcher, Bob Aveyard, John Clint, Colin Bain, Brian Vincent, Orlin Velev, Vesselin Paunov, and Bernie Binks.

February 2004: Research paper on rapid deposition of micro- and nanoparticle coatings is now available in the Articles ASAP section of Langmuir

Prevo, B. G.; Velev, O. D. Controlled, rapid deposition of structured coatings from micro- and nanoparticle suspensions. Langmuir 2004, 20, 2099–2107.

December 2003: Droplet manipulation research published in Nature

Velev, O. D.; Prevo, B. G.; Bhatt, K. H. On-chip manipulation of free droplets. Nature 2003, 426, 515–516.

Summer 2003: Microdroplet manipulation work featured in research news publications

Microscopic factory to yield lab safety and savings, RESULTS, NCSU research newsletter

Chemists shrink beakers into drops, Nature News

Velev Research Group · Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering · NC State University · 1050 Engineering Building I · Campus Box 7905 · Raleigh, NC 27695-7905 · USA · +1 919 513 4648