Seminar focuses on secrets of natural nanocomposites

Seminar focuses on secrets of natural nanocomposites

Athens, Ga. – The recipe Mother Nature employs to fabricate sea shells creates natural biological nanocomposites with superior strength and toughness. A seminar at the University of Georgia on Oct. 11 will summarize the recent discovery of nanoparticles in nacre (mother-of-pearl).

“Innovations at the Interface: Interdisciplinary approaches to engineering, science and society” is sponsored by the UGA Faculty of Engineering continues with a seminar by Professor Xiaodong Li on Thursday, Oct. 11 at 4 p.m. in room 150 of the Student Learning Center. A researcher at the Department of Mechanical Engineering and University NanoCenter at the University of South Carolina, Li’s talk will focus on recent discoveries about the deformation and toughening secrets of natural biological nanocomposites.

The seminar and discussion series is designed to bring together faculty and students who are interested in technology and how it impacts society. Li’s work illustrates the increasing interplay between the natural world and human design. It was found that rotation and deformation are the two prominent mechanisms contributing to energy dissipation in mother-of-pearl. The biopolymer spacing between nanoparticles facilitates the particle rotation process. This talk also presents future challenges in the study of natural biological nanocomposites and their applications to engineering materials design.

“The nanoscale continues to be a revealing horizon, expanding its potential as it increases our knowledge of the world around us. Harnessing the properties of nature in the service of society goes to the very essence of engineering,” says Dale Threadgill, director of the Faculty of Engineering.

The presentation by Li will be followed by a reception. The monthly seminar series is free and open to the entire UGA community. For more information, please visit http://www.engineering.uga.edu/events/ .

The UGA Faculty of Engineering was established in 2001 to advance comprehensive engineering at the University of Georgia. With more than 100 members from twenty-four departments in nine schools and colleges across campus, the Faculty of Engineering provides an entrepreneurial setting for engineering academic programs in the unique environment of UGA. For more information, visit www.engineering.uga.edu .