Professor & Vice Chair, Associate Dean
Stony Brook University
Department of Chemistry, College of Arts & Sciences
Multicomponent films based on nanoparticle dispersions have a wide range of applications, including antimicrobial coatings for medical instruments, conductive textiles for flexible electronics, anti-reflective coatings for optical devices, paints for humid environments that are resistant to mold growth, and drug-loaded coatings for medical implants. Often, there is a need to spatially control location of certain components in the film. For example, silver nanoparticles can be used to impart antimicrobial activity to paints, but this component is expensive and may only be needed in the top few layers of the coating, not throughout the entire film. In principle, evaporative drying of multicomponent dispersions can be used to create films with a prescribed vertical concentration profile in a one-step process. In this talk, she will be presenting her recent results from atomic force microscopy (AFM) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) on films prepared from binary colloidal dispersions containing large and small particles of varying size and initial volume fraction. Their results show evidence of different types of stratification behavior, including large-on-top (e.g., large particles migrating to the top surface of the film), small-on-top, and “sandwich”-like layering. Then discuss these results in terms of recent theories for stratification during evaporative drying and present some initial studies showing that coatings with nanoscale roughness resist bacterial adhesion. Finally, her recent collaborative results on evaporative assembly of functionalized nanoparticles can yield striking dual-scale hierarchical structures will be presented. Regular microscale stripes of nanoparticle monolayers with hexagonal nanoscale order are obtained on physically and chemically homogeneous substrates through evaporation of a suspension of DNA-functionalized nanoparticles with a charged shell. The stripe width, spacing and nanoparticle ordering can be controlled by varying nanoparticle concentration and can be described by a simple analytical model. Results indicate that the interplay between “stick-slip” motion of the droplet contact line and Coulombic and steric nanoparticle interactions control the formation of the observed structures.
Prof. Surita Bhatia is a Professor and Vice Chair of Chemistry, Affiliate Professor of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering, Associate Dean for Innovation, Diversity, Equity, and Access, and Director of the NSF NRT PhD training grant on Quantitative Analysis of Materials at Stony Brook University (SBU). She has previously served as Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs for the SBU campus. Dr. Bhatia received her bachelor's degree from the University of Delaware and her Ph.D. from Princeton University, both in Chemical Engineering, followed by postdoctoral training at the Rhodia/Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) Complex Fluids Laboratory. Dr. Bhatia has worked in public higher education for over two decades, first at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where she was a Professor of Chemical Engineering, Adjunct Professor of Polymer Science and Engineering, Associate Director of the Institute for Cellular Engineering, and in the leadership of the NSF-funded Center for Hierarchical Manufacturing. In 2012, she moved to a joint position as a Staff Scientist at the Center for Functional Nanomaterials at Brookhaven National Laboratory and a faculty member in the Chemistry Department at SBU.
Dr. Bhatia’s research program focuses on structure, assembly, and rheological properties of polymeric gels, soft biomaterials, and nanoparticle dispersions. Exclusive of center grants, she has been PI or Co-PI on grants totaling $16 million from NSF, NIH, the Department of Energy, philanthropic foundations, and private industry. Dr. Bhatia is a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), a Fellow of the Society of Rheology, and a member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). She is the recipient of an NSF CAREER Award, a Dupont Young Professor Award, a 3M Corporation Non-Tenured Faculty Award, and a 2018 AIChE Women in Chemical Engineering (WIC) Award for Outstanding Contributions to Chemical Engineering. Dr. Bhatia also has strong interests in mentoring, diversity, equity, and inclusion. In this regard, she has served as PI on three NSF REU projects, joint-PI on NIH IMSD and NIH PREP programs for underrepresented minority students in the biomedical sciences, and she is a recipient of the national AIChE WIC Mentorship Excellence Award. Dr. Bhatia has been recognized at the national level for her work on inclusion and diversity in STEM fields; she was an invited participant at the 2009 National Academy of Engineering “Frontiers of Engineering Education” Symposium and at the 2011 NSF/American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Workshop on Gender Diversity in Nanoscience Fields. More information about her research and interests can be found at https://sites.google.com/stonybrook.edu/bhatia/home.