Alex's research focuses on hydration on a molecular level. The question he is most concerned with is how and why are hydrophilic surfaces hydrated in both biological systems as well as non-biological or inorganic systems? He is working on solving this mystery by performing DNP measurements and surface force measurements. Apart from this, he works on the correlattion of measurements of water diffusivity with surface forces specifically for hydrated hydrophilic surfaces.
Present: Instructor, Elite Educational Institute
Present: NMR R&D Scientist, JEOL USA
Present: Associate Director, R&D, Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Tarnuma is coadvised by Prof. Susannah Scott (ChE) and Prof. Songi Han (DCB). She works on synthesis and characterization of heterogeneous catalytic systems using EPR techniques. Using a highly sensitive technique like EPR may allow better understanding of some of the more elusive mechanisms involved in these systems. This information can be applied to improve factors such as catalytic activity, efficiency, and selectivity. She is currently focusing on understanding supported vanadium- and rhenium-based systems which are widely used in olefin metathesis/polymerization reactions.
- PSBN 4623
- Graduate Student Researcher
Till worked on a project on hardware design to run ODNP on fuel cells. He and Prof. Songi Han were attempting to analyze conduction pathways in polyelectrolyte membranes with the help of ODNP. They hoped to better understand the difference between the surface (backbone) diffusion and the bulk diffusion using the ODNP. By changing those diffusion behaviors and understanding how membrane diffusion works, they built up the base to obtain a higher efficiency for diffusion through the membrane.
- Graduate Student Researcher
Present: NMR & EPR Specialist, Materials Research Laboratory, University of California - Santa Barbara
Blake is coadvised by Prof. Mark Sherwin (Physics) and Prof. Songi Han (DCB). His focus is to work on developing high field EPR methods and performing high field EPR on systems to learn about the behavior of materials in a high field. By doing this, he helps build a better understanding of the processes that are important for the systems of spins at high field, aiming to develop new methods for studying biological systems. Under Mark Sherwin's guidance, Blake has also helped develop the UCSB electron-free laser as a tool for high field EPR.
Kate focuses on understanding the aggregation of tau, an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) implicated in neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer`s Disease. She is interested in how tau can form extraordinarily stable amyloid fibrils, and aim to understand its aggregation behavior and seeding from a structural point of view. Currently, she is working on (1) seeding tau monomer with tau amyloid fibrils and (2) investigating the amyloid structure and fibril stability. She utilizes a number of biophysical techniques in her projects including ThT fluorescence, EPR, and DEER. With the background of polymer materials and engineering, she can provide new insights into biochemical and biophysical problems.
- PSBN 4653