The Molecular Interfaces and Tribology Section addresses highly interdisciplinary problems in fundamental and applied surface and interface science. The research in the Section ranges from developing comprehensive analytical methods to evaluate both model and realistic surfaces to designing and optimizing molecular interfaces for applications such as anti-fouling, controlling biological activity, or lowering contact friction. The section specializes in
Basic and applied research- in (a) surface chemistry of molecular adsorbates, SAMs and biomolecules (b) design, synthesis and characterization of organic nanostructured materials, (c) the chemical and mechanical basis for adhesion, friction and wear, and (d) nanomechanics and mechanical properties of nanostructured materials;
Development of advanced quantitative analytical methods to evaluate surface and interface properties of molecular, biological, and tribological interfaces, ideally in real time and in situ;
Design and optimization of molecular interfaces to control biochemical activity, mitigate fouling, and minimize friction, wear and adhesion;
Design and development of bioinspired materials that preserve and exploit the unique properties of biomaterials while incorporating additional functionality, such as conductivity or fluorescence, not found in natural materials;
Development of lubrication strategies for especially demanding Navy and DoD applications.