interests are in nanostructured polymers and hybrids, their analysis and
application, as well as the chemical reactions that allow for the
(trans)formation of such materials, with a strong preference for benign /
The structure and
properties of nanocomposites are intimately related to the chemistry
of the polymer and the nanofiller compatibilizer. Combinations of
nanoclays, non-toxic heat stabilizers and vegetable oil derived
plasticizers have been investigated for potential as environmentally
benign alternatives to additives in existing PVC wire and cable
applications, with some work relevant to medical PVC as well.
Fundamental studies of the mechanical and barrier properties of high
nanofiller content films ("nanolaminates") have yielded materials
with unique combinations of stiffness and damping that further serve
as excellent model systems for validating various theories of
nanocomposite permeability; application-oriented work taking
advantage of these unique properties is also in progress. In collaboration with
Prof. E. Reynaud, we
have attempted to deconvolute the effects of nanoparticle
reinforcement and microstructural reorganization in semi-crystalline
polymer nanocomposites. Finally, the use of nanoclays as non-toxic
additives able to reduce permeability and flammability is also of
delivery systems represent a specific area of interest here, with
ongoing collaborations with
Prof. P. Gaines and Prof. E. Reynaud aimed at
demonstrating their ability to support cell proliferation and
modeling their swelling characteristics. Again working with
Prof. E. Reynaud we have
pursued an understanding of the composition-curing-properties
relations in vegetable oil based epoxy thermosets, with potential
utility as high performance, non-toxic binders in engineered wood
products and glass fiber reinforced composites for wind turbine blades. The synthesis of new resins is
also of interest, as exemplified by work on a BPA-free high
performance epoxy with substantial promise in the areas of
adhesives, composites and can coatings. Finally, in prior work we
successfully produced cytocompatible tissue engineering scaffolds,
and have used replica molding of natural porous bodies (bone,
sponge, etc.) to set the structure and independently altering the
properties through choice of pre-polymer. Shape-memory
characteristics were also realized in these scaffolds, further
enhancing their capabilities.
collaboration with Prof.
J. Therrien, we are working to understand the preparation and
properties of novel ceramics and semiconductors produced via the
conversion of molecular precursors. We are able
to show that pre-ceramic polymers may be formed into nanostructures
very difficult to attain with direct ceramic processing, and that
the patterning of this process is possible as well. Potential
applications include high-speed scanning probe microscopy (SPM) and
micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS). More recently, we have begun
investigations into the creation of novel two-dimensional
semiconductors with the potential to make up for some of the
shortcomings of graphene.
A wide range of
characterization techniques are employed, most notably thermal
analysis (TGA, DSC, DMA), mechanical testing (tensile, flexural,
impact), x-ray diffraction (XRD), barrier properties measurements
(OTR), infrared and near-infrared spectroscopy (FTIR, ATR-FTIR &
NIR), laser scanning confocal fluorescence microscopy (LSCFM),
nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), fire testing (UL-94,
cone calorimetry), Hg intrusion porosimetry and gas sorption / BET
analysis. In addition, in collaboration with
Prof. E. Reynaud a novel
means of thermomechanical characterization (termed thermal tensile
testing) has been developed and successfully used to quantify
changes in plastic deformation mechanism in ductile materials.
CANDIDATES:Please do not e-mail me directly. Instead,
proceed to http://jobs.uml.edu/ to find and
apply for a post-doctoral position.
PROSPECTIVE GRADUATE STUDENTS: Please e-mail me
your CV and a brief cover letter that explicitly includes what
subject area(s) and degree program you're most interested in. Please
understand, however, that I will not offer a funded position to
someone I have never met or spoken with in person. If you wish to
meet in person, the following should be understood:
Meetings must be scheduled by e-mail, at least 24 hours in advance.
Your background and interests should match my research.
The discussion will not focus on whether I will hire you.
I will indicate my funding situation before our meeting, and make
any hiring decisions only after I have met with all interested parties,
based on the availability of funds and the degree to which the applicants
match the needs of the relevant project(s).
C. Barry, J. Chen, J.
Mead, D. Schmidt, "Multiscale Processing of Polymers and
Nanocomposites," in Materials
Processing Handbook, Groza, J. R., Shackelford, J. F., Lavernia,
E. J., Powers, M. T., Eds., CRC Press: Boca Raton, FL, 30-1, 2007.
D. Schmidt, J. Mead, C. Barry, J. Chen,
"Nanomanufacturing with Polymers", in
Handbook of Plastics Technologies, 2nd ed., Harper, C. A., Ed.,
McGraw-Hill: New York, NY, 6.1, 2006.
A. K. Pal, D. Bello, S-F. Hsieh, D.
Schmidt, M. Khatri, P. Gaines, E. Rogers, "Screening for oxidative
damage by engineered nanomaterials: A comparative evaluation of FRAS and
DCFH," Preprints - ACS Division of Environmental Chemistry,
H. S. Jafferji, D. F. Schmidt, E. Reynaud,
"Mechanical Properties of Cycloaliphatic Terephthalate Co-polyester Clay
Nanocomposites," SPE ANTEC, 70, 865-870 (2012).
A. Kumar, S. Modi, D. Schmidt, C. M. F.
Barry, J. L. Mead. "Highly impermeable nanocomposites of brominated
butyl rubber with modified montmorillonite clay," Proceedings of the
180th ACS Rubber Division Meeting, 2, 1369-1392 (2011).
S. Fillery, H. Koerner, L. Drummy, M.
Tchoul, C. Beier, R. Brutchey, E. Dunkerley, D. Schmidt, R. Vaia,
"Single component polymer nanocomposites assembles of
polymer-nanoparticle hybrids for capacitive storage," Polymer
Preprints, 52, 102 (2011).
K. Jafferji, D. F. Schmidt, E. Reynaud,
"Thermoset Nanocomposites from Epoxidized Linseed Oil for Structural
SPE ANTEC, 69, 797-801 (2011).
S. Patil, L. J. Clarizia, M. McDonald, E.
Reynaud, D. F. Schmidt, "Responsive Hydrogels Produced via Organic
Sol-Gel Chemistry for Biomedical Applications," SPE ANTEC,
69, 2012-2016 (2011).
S. Shady, D. Schmidt, S. McCarthy,
"Improved Dialysis Technique for Core-shell Pullulan-Polycaprolactone
(PCL) Nanospheres Loaded with Hydrophobic Ciprofloxacin," SPE ANTEC,
69, 1982-1988 (2011).