News: Faculty

Polina Anikeeva awarded 2018 Vilcek Prize

Polina Anikeeva has been awarded a 2018 Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science. Awarded annually by the Vilcek Foundation, the $50,000 prizes recognize younger immigrants who have demonstrated exceptional promise early in their careers. …   more

A new approach to rechargeable batteries

A type of battery first invented nearly five decades ago could catapult to the forefront of energy storage technologies, thanks to a new finding by researchers at MIT. The battery, based on electrodes made of sodium and nickel chloride and using a new type of metal mesh membrane, could be used…   more

Engineers design artificial synapse for “brain-on-a-chip” hardware

Researchers in the emerging field of “neuromorphic computing” have attempted to design computer chips that work like the human brain. Instead of carrying out computations based on binary, on/off signaling, like digital chips do today, the elements of a “brain on a chip” would work in an analog…   more

The best way of looking at the brain is from within

Members of Polina Anikeeva’s lab are trying to build devices that match the physical properties of neural tissue. “It is problematic to have something with the elastic properties of a knife inside something with the elastic properties of a chocolate pudding.” …   more

Capturing the properties of very hot compounds

The thermodynamic properties of compounds such as aluminum oxide, which are known as refractory materials because they melt at temperatures above 2,000 degrees Celsius (3,632 Fahrenheit), have been difficult to study because few vessels can withstand the heat to contain them, and those that do…   more

School of Engineering welcomes new faculty

The School of Engineering has announced the addition of 16 new faculty members to its departments, institutes, labs, and centers during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 academic years. With research and teaching activities ranging from personalization in the microbiome to the application of machine…   more

A new way to store thermal energy

In large parts of the developing world, people have abundant heat from the sun during the day, but most cooking takes place later in the evening when the sun is down, using fuel — such as wood, brush or dung — that is collected with significant time and effort. Now, a new chemical…   more

Researchers develop flexible, stretchable photonic devices

Researchers at MIT and several other institutions have developed a method for making photonic devices — similar to electronic devices but based on light rather than electricity — that can bend and stretch without damage. The devices could find uses in cables to connect computing devices, or in…   more

New property found in unusual crystalline materials

Most metals and semiconductors, from the steel in a knife blade to the silicon in a solar panel, are made up of many tiny crystalline grains. The way these grains meet at their edges can have a major impact on the solid’s properties, including mechanical strength, electrical conductivity,…   more

Greater Springfield could be home to future laser industry

Last month, STCC announced that it is working with MIT on proposing a state-of-the-art photonics "factory" on STCC's campus in Springfield. MIT launched the first Photonics Education and Practice Factory this past spring, and Quinsigamond Community College and Worcester Polytechnic Institute --…   more

Deshpande Center and J-WAFS announce fall 2017 research grants

The MIT Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation announced today the award of $768,000 in grants to 17 MIT research teams currently working on early-stage technologies. DMSE-related projects include: "Structured Nucleic Acid Nanoparticle Therapeutic Delivery Platform" — Mark Bathe,…   more

Will metal supplies limit battery expansion?

The dramatic rise in production of electric vehicles, coupled with expected growth in the use of grid-connected battery systems for storing electricity from renewable sources, raises a crucial question: Are there enough raw materials to enable significantly increased production of lithium-ion…   more

Making renewable power more viable for the grid

Wind and solar power are increasingly popular sources for renewable energy. But intermittency issues keep them from connecting widely to the U.S. grid: They require energy-storage systems that, at the cheapest, run about $100 per kilowatt hour and function only in certain locations. Now…   more

Why researchers should step out of the lab

Shreya Dave, Jeff Grossman, and their co-researchers Brent Keller PhD ’16 and Karen Golmer, innovator in residence at MIT’s Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation, have published an account of their experience with learning by stepping out of their labs, using their work on membranes as a…   more

Blood testing via sound waves may replace some tissue biopsies

Cells secrete nanoscale packets called exosomes that carry important messages from one part of the body to another. Scientists from MIT and other institutions have now devised a way to intercept these messages, which could be used to diagnose problems such as cancer or fetal abnormalities.…   more

Fast-moving magnetic particles could enable new form of data storage

New research from the Beach Group has shown that an exotic kind of magnetic behavior discovered just a few years ago holds great promise as a way of storing data — one that could overcome fundamental limits that might otherwise be signaling the end of “Moore’s Law,” which describes the ongoing…   more

NEW.Mech 2017

NEW.Mech is a one-day workshop that aims to bring together the New England Mechanics community with an interest in exploring new directions in the mechanics of materials and structures, and to provide an opportunity to share the latest…   more