The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Search Results - material+science

53 Results Sort By:
Economical Buffer Layer Boosts Performance of Organic Solar Cells
New compositions of matter have been invented, specifically organic buffer layer materials that can greatly enhance power conversion efficiency (PCE) of organic photovoltaic (OPV) devices and can effectively functionalize metal electrodes. Conventional-architecture OPV devices made using the new buffer layer have average PCEs greater than 8%, with the highest PCE value exceeding 9.5%. This new buffer layer can be used with Ag, Cu, and Au cathodes, opening routes to all-solution-based device fabrication and roll-to-roll processing. In addition, the new buffer layer materials can be applied at a layer thickness of up to 55 nm, avoiding processing challenges that occur with ultrathin buffer layers and enabling a simplified and reproducible process for device fabrication.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Todd Emrick, Thomas Russell, Zachariah Page, Yao Liu
Category(s): Physical Science, Material science, Clean Energy, Devices
A New Processing Technique to Fabricate Polymer Articles with Improved Mechanical and Thermal Properties
This invention provides a new polymer processing technique, termed Melt-Mastication, which improves the properties of commodity semi-crystalline polymers, such as polypropylene. Compared with conventional methodology for processing polymers, Melt-Mastication creates unique microstructures in the polymer material, which results in improved mechanical and thermal properties of the polymer material and enables commodity polymers to compete with more costly materials in a variety of industries.

Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Alan Lesser, E. Bryan Coughlin, Brian Cromer
Category(s): Material science, Physical Science
Stablizing Liquid Drops ofof Arbitrary Shapes by the Interfacial Jamming of Nanoparticles
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Thomas Russell, Todd Emrick, Mengmeng Cui
Category(s): Material science, Nanotechnology, Engineering, Physical Science
Anti-flammable Compounds and Adhesive Materials
This invention provides new chemical compositions and methods for the preparation of adhesive materials with low flammability. The low flammability is due to newly invented organic/polymeric components used in the adhesive formulation, rather than through the addition of a conventional anti-flammable additives such as halogenated organic molecules or phosphorous-containing structures.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Todd Emrick, Justin Timmons, Megan Szyndler
Category(s): Chemicals, Environmental, Material science, Physical Science
This invention provides economical, renewable surfaces and related methods for selective capture of bacteria in a fluid medium and for killing and/or release of the captured bacteria. The fabrication of these surfaces or surface-treated substrate materials does not require the use of expensive biomolecules and toxic chemicals. The surfaces capture and kill bacteria on contact without leaching any toxic antimicrobial agents. The surfaces can rapidly release captured or killed bacteria via mechanical means, and thus are easily renewable for subsequent round of bacterial capture, killing and release, which makes them ideal for use in on-line bacterial sensor systems. In addition, the surfaces can be engineered to selectively capture bacteria from complex fluid media or selectively capture one bacterial strain over another.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Maria Santore, Bing Fang
Category(s): Material science, Biotechnology, Devices & sensors
Highly Resilient Synthetic Hydrogels with Tunable Mechanical Properties
This technology, developed by a team of polymer scientists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, provides a versatile and simple method for producing highly resilient synthetic hydrogels with excellent mechanical properties comparable to the most efficient, naturally occurring elastic protein called resilin. The method involves the use of photo-initiated crosslinking reaction of hydrophilic and hydrophobic polymers having reactive end-groups in the presence of a tetra-functional thiol cross-linker. The resultant resilient hydrogels possess network elements of resilin, including a uniform network structure, low crosslink density, and an absence of secondary structures within the crosslinked primary chains. These hydrogels are capable of undergoing significant reversible deformation without energy loss (?97% resilience) at varying water content and show negligible hysteresis across a broad range of strains up to 300%. The swelling capacity, stiffness and fracture toughness of the hydrogels can be easily tuned by controlling the volume fractions of the hydrophilic and hydrophobic polymers to tailor the hydrogels to the specific needs of end-use applications. Current studies have focused on material elements common in extended wear contact lenses.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Gregory Tew, Melissa Lackey, Jun Cui, Catherine Walker, Alfred Crosby
Category(s): Material science, Healthcare
Self-Reinforced Polymeric Materials with enhanced Processability and Toughness
This technology provides self-reinforced polymeric materials with greatly improved physical and mechanical properties as well as a unique and simple method for generating these materials. The concept involves using a low molecular weight crystalline compound in a polymer blend to form reinforcing crystalline particles. The presence of the crystalline particles simultaneously improves the impact or fracture toughness, enhances processibility through reduced viscosity, increases or does not otherwise detrimentally decrease the modulus, and lowers the coefficient of thermal expansion, among other improvements. These advantageous characteristics will allow self-reinforced polymeric materials to compete in markets currently using more expensive compounds. Virtually any polymeric material can benefit from this technology.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Alan Lesser, Thomas Mccarthy, Onur Sinan Yordem, Joonsung Yoon
Category(s): Material science, Physical Science
Novel Graft Copolymers as Anti-fouling Membrane Coating Materials
When commercially available polymer membranes are exposed to aqueous solutions of salt, emulsified oil droplets, and other particulate matter, their lifetime can decrease catastrophically due to reduction in flux as a result of membrane fouling. This technology provides a new class of graft copolymers capable of extending the lifespan and functionality of water purification membranes. As a membrane coating material, the graft copolymers have excellent hydrophilicity and anti-fouling properties. In addition, they contain UV-activatable functional groups to enable UV-crosslinking of the copolymers, both within the coating itself to impart structural stability and into the underlying membrane to promote strong adhesion. These graft copolymer coatings are highly effective in preventing fouling of water-filtration membranes, and in maintaining the flux levels necessary for efficient filtration. Unlike other coating materials, the anti-fouling graft copolymers do not delaminate from the membrane substrate.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Todd Emrick, Kurt Breitenkamp, Ravindra Revanur, Benny Freeman, Bryan Mccloskey
Category(s): Physical Science, Material science
Cavitation Rheology for Measuring Local Mechanical Properties in Biologically Relevant Soft Materials
Measuring the mechanical properties of a complex biological tissue is crucial to developing knowledge about its physiology. Determining these physical properties in vivo is essential to innovation in tissue engineering, as well as to investigating the effects of aging and disease. Due to the heterogeneous structure of complex tissues, localized testing is necessary since probing surface properties only provides an incomplete picture of a tissue’s mechanical properties. Cavitation Rheology Technique (CRT), a novel methodology that originated in Dr. Alfred J. Crosby’s lab, succeeds where traditional techniques fall short. CRT involves measuring the pressure to induce cavitation at the tip of a needle within a soft material. This pressure is quantitatively related to the local modulus of the material. This allows for localized testing of non-transparent materials and tissues. Furthermore, CRT adopts a simple device and system design and requires only minimal amounts of sample material and testing time. This technique has been successfully demonstrated in a broad range of synthetic hydrogels and natural tissues, and can be applied in vivo.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Alfred Crosby, Jessica Zimberlin Eastman (pat agent)
Category(s): Biotechnology, Healthcare, Devices & sensors, Devices, Diagnostic technology, Material science
Amphiphilic Polymer Capsules and Related Methods of Interfacial Assembly
A chemical crosslinking process is used to prepare capsules from PEGylated polyolefins using either oil-in-water (i.e., oil inside the capsule in a water-based system), or water-in-oil system. The covalent network structure of these capsules make them more robust than many other systems under investigation in controlled-release.The unique nature of the crosslinking chemistry is such that the crosslinks can be made either hydrolytically stable or unstable. Those with hydrolytically stable crosslinks have longer carrier lifetimes, while those with hydrolytically unstable crosslinks will degrade over a time period that can be controlled by crosslink density and the type of crosslinker used.
Published: 6/11/2021   |   Inventor(s): Todd Emrick, Kurt Breitenkamp
Category(s): Material science, Therapeutics & prevention, Biotechnology
1 2 3 4 5 6