ACS Colloid & Surface Science presentation now on YouTube

ACS Colloid & Surface Science 2014 - In Situ electron microscopy of colloid aggregation and liquid-vapor interfacial phenomena

Nicholas M. Schneider*, Wonsuk Lee*, Joseph M. Grogan*, Frances M. Ross^, and Haim H. Bau*

* - Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 
^ - IBM T. J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY.

Using a custom made liquid cell, dubbed the nanoaquarium, we study the interactions among colloidal particles tens of nanometers in size and between particles and moving liquid-vapor interfaces with the nanoscale resolution of the electron microscope. The nanoaquarium consists of a thin liquid layer laden with nanoparticles and sandwiched between two thin silicon nitride membranes.  The liquid is sealed from the vacuum environment of the electron microscope and is sufficiently thin to allow electrons to pass through without excessive scattering.  We examined particle- particle interactions, self-assembly dynamics, beam interactions with the irradiated medium and its effect on particle aggregation, and the interactions between a moving liquid-vapor interface and particles in the precursor film. We discuss the potential and challenges for in-situ electron microscopy of colloidal systems.

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Nicholas M Schneider

Nicholas M Schneider is a 2010 graduate from the Kate Gleason College of Engineering who is now a Doctoral Candidate at the University of Pennsylvania. Originally from an obscure town south of Buffalo, New York, he attended the Rochester Institute of Technology where he received concurrent Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees. While there he had a number of Co-ops including a six month stay as a Design Engineer at Lockheed Martin and Research positions with Dr. Satish Kandlikar. Nicholas currently works with Dr. Haim H Bau in the field dubbed “in situ electron microscopy of liquid systems” where he studies applications in energy and biological systems. Outside of the lab, Nicholas Schneider is a Graduate Associate in Rodin College House and enjoys running (he ran his second Philly Marathon this past November), cooking, baking, reading, and justifying his coffee addiction by making it a hobby.