News & Events


Fri, 02/17/2017 | UW Materials Science & Engineering

prototype whitening losenge tablet Deniz Yucesoy, a graduate student in MSE's GEMSEC Labs, has been awarded an Amazon Catalyst grant for a project titled "Remineralizing Tooth Whitening Lozenges for Healthy Daily Use."

Current whitening products typically contain hydrogen peroxide as the active ingredient, which remove discoloration by dissolving stained minerals from the surface of teeth. Although this chemical-etching process reveals a fresh surface, it is often at the expense of removing healthy enamel — the fully mineralized crown of teeth which provides protection and cannot regenerate. As a consequence, the inner layer, dentin, becomes exposed — creating complications, such as hypersensitivity and increased susceptibility to caries (cavities), which, taken together, far outweigh the cosmetic benefits.

Newly developed tooth-whitening lozenges dissolve in saliva recruiting calcium and phosphate ions to the surface of teeth and create a new mineral layer through a restorative process thereby eliminating undesirable stains. When fully developed through the Catalyst Project, whitening lozenges will be used, clinically and over-the-counter product worldwide, for both therapeutic (remineralization) and cosmetic (whitening) purposes providing a safer alternative to the existing peroxide-containing corrosive treatments.

The Whitening Lozenge Team members: Sanaz Saadat, Sami Dogan, MSE Professor Mehmet Sarikaya, MSE grad student Deniz Yucesoy, and MSE Research Scientist, Hanson Fong

The Whitening Lozenge Team members (l to r): Sanaz Saadat (grad student, Oral Health Sciences), Sami Dogan (Assistant Professor and Clinician, Restorative Dentistry), Mehmet Sarikaya (Professor and PI, MSE), Deniz Yucesoy (MSE grad student and The Catalyst Lead, MSE), and Hanson Fong (Research Scientist, MSE).

Tue, 02/07/2017 | UW Electrical Engineering

MSE associate professor Xiaodong Xu, along with Arka Majumdar, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Physics, and their team have discovered an important first step towards building electrically pumped nanolasers (or light-based sources). These lasers are critical in the development of integrated photonic based short-distance optical interconnects and sensors. Short distance optical interconnects can improve the performance of data centers, allowing them to be energy-efficient and support high performance parallel computing. The results were published in a recent edition of Nano Letters.

Mon, 12/19/2016 | uw today

Miqin Zhang, a professor in UW MSE, is looking for ways to help the body heal itself when injury, disease or surgery cause large-scale damage to one type of tissue in particular: skeletal muscle. Muscles have a limited ability to regenerate, repair and realign themselves properly after certain types of damage.

Zhang and her team are taking a synthetic approach to muscle regeneration. Their goal is to create a synthetic, porous, biologically compatible "scaffold" that mimics the normal extracellular environment of skeletal muscle &mdash' onto which human cells could migrate and grow new replacement fibers. Their research is published in the Nov. 16 issue of Advanced Materials.

Tue, 11/29/2016 | UW Today
MSE professor Miqin Zhang leads research on a new system to encase chemotherapy drugs within tiny, synthetic “nanocarrier” packages, which could be injected into patients and disassembled at the tumor site to release their toxic cargo. “Our nanocarrier system is really a hybrid addressing two needs — drug delivery and tumor imaging,” said Zhang, senior author on a paper published Sept. 27 in the journal Small. “First, this nanocarrier can deliver chemotherapy drugs and release them in the tumor area, which spares healthy tissue from toxic side effects. Second, we load the nanocarrier with materials to help doctors visualize the tumor, either using a microscope or by MRI scan.”
Wed, 10/26/2016 | UW Materials Science & Engineering

Professor Kannan Krishnan’s textbook “Magnetism and Magnetic Materials” was formally released in the United States on October 18, 2016.

Krishnan’s book, twelve years in the making, has a unique multidisciplinary focus, tailored to a broad audience of physicists, materials scientists, engineers, chemists, biologists, and medical doctors.

“[He] has written what could become a new standard textbook in the field of magnetic materials,” said Urs Hafeli, Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia.


Tue, 10/18/2016 | UW Materials Science & Engineering

MSE research associate Ryan Toivola won Best Paper at the 2016 Composites and Advanced Materials Expo (CAMX).

Toivola’s paper “Time Temperature Indicator Film for Monitoring Composite Repair Adhesive Cure using Thermochromic Fluorescent Molecules” won Best Paper in the Non-Destructive Evaluation and Testing (NDE) category.

Rita Taitano Johnson, MSE graduate student, also won Runner-Up for her poster “Improving Adhesive Bonding of Composites Through Surface Characterization Using Inverse Gas Chromatography (IGC) Methods.”

CAMX was created by the American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA) and the Society for the Advancement of Material and Process Engineering (SAMPE) to connect and advance all aspects of the world’s composites and advanced materials communities.


Fri, 10/14/2016 | UW Materials Science & Engineering

On October 12, 2016, Devin MacKenzie and Christine Luscombe, Associate Professors of Materials Science & Engineering joined Clean Energy Institute Director Dan Schwarz for a research showcase and introduction to the Washington Clean Energy Testbeds (WCET) for Rep. Norma Smith.

Rep. Norma Smith is responsible for the bill that established the Joint Center for Deployment and Research in Earth Abundant Materials (JCDREAM) to provide the organizational framework to stimulate innovation in the use of earth abundant materials.

Devin MacKenzie and Rep. Norma Smith in the CEI lab with Dan Schwartz

Devin MacKenzie, Dan Schwartz, and Rep. Norma Smith (left to right). Photos courtesy of UW State Relations.

Luscombe discussed how she is using earth abundant materials in her lab as well as her work as faculty adviser for Diversity in Clean Energy (DICE).

MacKenzie discussed his work in sustainable batteries and new methods and materials for solar energy.

Tue, 10/11/2016 | Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

Professor Kannan Krishnan has won the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Research Prize for his academic achievements.

As part of this award Prof. Krishnan is invited to undertake long periods of research in collaboration with German scientists and institutions. Krishnan "is well recognized as an international expert in elucidating structure property relations in a wide range of magnetic and spintronics materials," said the nominator Professor Michael Farle of the University of Duisburg-Essen Department of Physics. Read more »

Mon, 10/03/2016 | UW College of Engineering

Four MSE faculty have been awarded funding through the College of Engineering Strategic Research Initiatives (SRI) program to form the Center for Integrated Printed Systems (CIPriS). In partnership with other UW Engineering faculty, Devin Mackenzie, Alex Jen, Christine Luscombe, and Xiaodong Xu proposed the creation of CIPriS to bring together the emerging Washington Research Foundation Roll-to-Roll facility, the Clean Energy Institute Scaleup Testbed, and Nano Engineering and Sciences along with existing labs and a broad interdisciplinary team of UW CoE faculty. This exciting project spans from nano-scale to miles in several important areas such as energy (printable solar cells and thin film batteries), health care (wearable electronics for health sensors), and scalable manufacturing (roll-to-roll, 3D printing and thin film aircraft mechanical and thermal sensors).

For more information about CIPriS and other 2016 SRI Awardees, please visit

Mon, 10/03/2016 | UW Today

MSE professor Mehmet Sarikaya leads research that has unveiled peptides that could improve results in how we treat disease, repair damaged tissue. and replace lost limbs. While implanted electrodes scar, wires overheat and our bodies struggle against ill-fitting pumps, pipes or valves, a paper published published Sept. 22 in Scientific Reports shows how a genetically engineered peptide can assemble into nanowires atop 2-D, solid surfaces that are just a single layer of atoms thick. These nanowire assemblages are critical because the peptides relay information across the bio/nano interface through molecular recognition — the same principles that underlie biochemical interactions such as an antibody binding to its specific antigen or protein binding to DNA.

Wed, 09/21/2016 | Materials Research Society

Congratulations to Jim De Yoreo on receiving the very prestigious Materials Research Society’s (MRS) David Turnbull Lectureship Award for 2016! De Yoreo, an MSE affiliate professor, is being honored for helping shape the world's understanding of crystallization science. De Yoreo, who is also an affiliate professor in UW Chemistry and lead at the PNNL Materials Synthesis and Simulation Across Scales Initiative, will give a technical lecture at the MRS Fall Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts in November. The David Turnbull Lectureship Award recognizes the career of a scientist who has made outstanding contributions to understanding materials phenomena and properties through research, writing, and lecturing, as exemplified by the late David Turnbull of Harvard University.

Thu, 06/09/2016

Peter Pauzauskie and his team have their eyes focused on laser innovations. Last year they unveiled an approach to cooling liquids using laser light. Now, as part of a MURI grant led by Mansoor Sheik-Bahae at the University of New Mexico, Pauzauskie’s research group is joining a larger collaboration to develop self-cooling lasers. Their efforts would address a major limitation in today’s laser technology.

Mon, 04/25/2016

MSE Associate Professor Jihui Yang is an author on a paper in Nature Energy regarding an unexpected discovery that has led to a rechargeable battery that's as inexpensive as conventional car batteries, but has a much higher energy density. The new battery could become a cost-effective, environmentally friendly alternative for storing renewable energy and supporting the power grid.  The Department of Energy and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory funded the research, and more information may be found at the PNNL site:


Wed, 04/06/2016

Congratulations to MSE Senior Jon Ell and MSE graduate students William Hwang and Robert Masse on each winning a Graduate Research Fellowship Program fellowship from the National Science Foundation.  The GRFP Fellows benefit from a three-year annual stipend of $34,000 along with a $12,000 cost of education allowance for tuition and fees (paid to the institution), opportunities for international research and professional development, and the freedom to conduct their own research at any accredited U.S. institution of graduate education they choose. NSF Fellows are anticipated to become knowledge experts who can contribute significantly to research, teaching, and innovations in science and engineering. These individuals are crucial to maintaining and advancing the nation's technological infrastructure and national security as well as contributing to the economic well-being of society at large. 

More Information:  National Science Foundation News

Wed, 04/06/2016

Two graduates students of the Krishnan group, Ryan Hufschmid and Hamed Arami, received Graduate Student Silver Awards at the 2016 Materials Research Society (MRS) Spring meeting in Tempe, Arizona, for their presentations.  Ryan's was on "Controlled Dose for Aberration Corrected In Situ (Scanning) Transmission Electron Microscopy Observations of Iron Oxide Nanoparticle Reduction Dynamics".  Hamed's was on "In Vivo Tissue Targeted Magnetic Particle Imaging (MPI)".  Congratulations!

Tue, 04/05/2016 | UW Today

The UW has joined NextFlex, a consortium of 30 academic institutions and industrial partners to develop the next generation of flexible electronic devices. As well as making use of NextFlex’s Silicon Valley infrastructure and funding, the UW and its industry partners could combine funds, personnel, time, materials and facilities, including those under development. J. Devin MacKenzie helped secure funding for the NextFlex center before joining the UW in September 2015 to create new methods to produce printable and flexible electronics and energy devices for large-scale industrial applications. MacKenzie is a Washington Research Foundation Professor of Clean Energy who holds appointments in MSE, ME, and the UW Clean Energy Institute.

As a founding member of this alliance, the UW will seek local and regional partners in the electronics and manufacturing industries to develop and produce flexible electronics for applications from medicine to transportation.

Tue, 03/15/2016 | The Washington Post

With sadness, we report that Dr. John Cahn, retired from a long and distinguished career at National Institute of Standards and Technology, and a longtime Affiliate Professor at the UW Materials Science & Engineering and Physics departments, died on March 14, 2016, at the age of 88.  Dr. Cahn first joined MSE as an Affiliate Professor in 1984.  After retiring from NIH, he moved to Seattle in 2007 to be near family, and he continued his affiliate appointment until his death.  Please follow the link to the Washington Post obituary for details of his life and great contributions to the field of materials science and engineering.


Fri, 02/26/2016 | UW Foster School of Business

Updated March 4, 2016

At the inaugural UW Health Innovation Challenge, 18 student teams gave their 1-minute pitches on stage, then, back at their project displays, answered questions about their projects for leaders in health technology and innovation. Four MSE students were involved in various projects that made it to the final round. MSE B.S./M.S. student Shawn Swanson, whose team EpiForAll received a $1000 "Judges Also Really Liked" prize, said the team is looking forward to the UW Business Plan Competition. Swanson performed impact testing to better understand how to design the device, mechanical testing, and initial prototype testing, as well as extensive literature searching. In the process, the team has developed connections with PATH, and plan to meet with them soon to organize charitable distribution of their device.

Tweet your congratulations to the teams at @Epi4All and @#HIC2016.

Original post

Good luck to four MSE students whose projects made to to the final round of 18 in the UW Health Innovation Challenge competition! Allen Kim, a junior, is on the Terri Test team that has created a paper test for Lyme disease using carbon nanotubes that overcomes many significant challenges of the current testing standards, making testing significantly more efficient and cost effective. Wasinee Opal Sriapha (senior) and Nichole Chin (B.S./M.S. student) are part of the PHSH Belt team.The PHSH (pronounced "fish") is a non-elastic support belt that is able to provide safe, effective, non-invasive and comfortable stoma protection and abdominal wall support against herniation for ostomy patients. Shawn Swanson (B.S./M.S. student) is on the EpiForAll team, whose goal is to provide easy-to-use epinephrine auto-injectors to treat anaphylaxis in economically impoverished countries to effectively address the orphan need.

Read more about the teams that made the final round »

Fri, 02/12/2016 | UW Today
A team led by Boeing Distinguished Associate Professor Xiaodong Xu successfully combined two different ultrathin semiconductors — each just one layer of atoms thick and roughly 100,000 times thinner than a human hair — to make a new two-dimensional heterostructure with potential uses in clean energy and optically-active electronics. The team announced its findings in a paper published Feb. 12 in the journal Science. "What we’re seeing here is distinct from heterostructures made of 3-D semiconductors," said Xu, who has a joint appointment in the Department of Physics. "We've created a system to study the special properties of these atomically thin layers and their potential to answer basic questions about physics and develop new electronic and photonic technologies."
Wed, 02/10/2016 | National Science Foundation

Prof. Peter Pauzauskie has received a 5-year NSF Career Award for his project titled "Integrated Research & Education on Controlling the Size and Composition of Diamond Nanocrystals via Molecular Synthesis."

Tue, 01/19/2016 | UW Today

Thomson Reuters has selected three MSE faculty in their list of elite, highly cited scientific researchers. According to Reuters, the authors were selected "based on their respective output of top-cited papers in their fields... Covering an 11-year period (and presenting a special subset of "hot" researchers whose very recent work has won distinction in the form of citations), it features the scientists who have won acclaim and approval within a key population: their peers."

Professor Guozhong Cao's research is focused on chemical processing, characterization, and applications of nanostructured materials and coatings and devices for energy conversion and storage as well as sensors and actuators.

MSE Department Chair Alex Jen is the Boeing-Johnson Chair Professor and Chief Scientist at the Clean Energy Institute. His research is focused on utilizing molecular, polymeric, and biomacromolecular self-assembly to create ordered arrangement of organic and inorganic functional materials for photonics, opto-electronics, nanomedicine, and nanotechnology.

Miqin Zhang's research is geared toward developing materials and devices for biological and medical applications through the work in three laboratories: Nanoparticle Lab, Tissue Engineering Lab, and Biosensor Lab.

Tue, 11/17/2015 | UW Today
UW engineers used an infrared laser to cool water by about 36 degrees Fahrenheit — a major breakthrough in the field. The UW team demonstrated a hydrothermal process to manufacture a well-known laser crystal for laser refrigeration applications in a faster, inexpensive, and scalable way. They also designed an instrument that uses a laser trap to "hold" a single nanocrystal and illuminate it. The instrument projects the particle’s "shadow" to allow observation of minute changes in its motion due to cooling. The team includes MSE assistant professor Paden Roder, PhD, MSE '15, and UW doctoral students Bennett E. Smith (chemistry), Xuezhe Zhou (MSE), and Matthew Crane (chemical engineering). Their study is to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences the week of Nov. 16.
Sat, 08/22/2015 | HHMI News

MSE PhD student Junwei Li has been awarded an International Student Research Fellowship from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. The fellowship was established in 2011 to support international students during their third to fifth years of graduate school in the United States. This year awards went to 45 students in 18 countries.

Sat, 08/22/2015 | Science Magazine

MSE Affiliate Professor James De Yoreo of PNNL has an article published in the July 31, 2015 issue of Science: "Crystallization by particle attachment in synthetic, biogenic, and geologic environments."

Mon, 08/03/2015 | UW Today
New research shows a variety of pathways to crystal formation. Crystallization occurs across scientific disciplines; a shift in the picture of how it occurs has far-reaching consequences, says lead author and MSE affiliate professor James De Yoreo. These conclusions, published July 31 in Science with De Yoreo as lead author, have implications for decades-old questions in crystal formation, such as how animals and plants form minerals into shapes that have no relation to their original crystal symmetry or why some contaminants are so difficult to remove from stream sediments and groundwater. De Yoreo is also an affiliate professor in chemistry and a materials scientist and physicist at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.