Imagine a cell phone you can fold up and carry in your wallet. When you drop it, nothing cracks or breaks, or if it does, it repairs itself. And when it’s time for an upgrade, the old phone will biodegrade instead of taking up space in a landfill.
Maybe you’d rather wear your laptop or tablet in the fibers of your clothes, or wear a monitor that provides constant data about your health but feels no different than your own skin.
Imagine exploring the cores of stars to understand — and ultimately control — the type of fusion that’s taking place.
High-energy density (HED) science is the study of properties and behavior of matter and radiation in extreme temperatures and pressures common to the deep interiors of the largest planets. It’s also the foundation of understanding fusion energy and high-energy astrophysical phenomena, and it’s happening at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, just 75 miles from UC Merced.
Zach Petrek, a second-year doctoral student in chemistry and chemical biology, can usually be found running experiments in the laboratory of his advisor, Professor Tao Ye. But this summer, he did something different — he went to NASA.
Petrek was one of seven UC Merced students to intern at NASA over the summer, an opportunity provided through MACES, the Merced nAnomaterials Center for Energy and Sensing.
On Sept. 22, MacArthur "Genius" Award winner and Stanford University bioengineering Professor Manu Prakash will deliver the keynote lecture at the first annual open house for UC Merced’s Center for Cellular and Biomolecular Machines (CCBM), a National Science Foundation Center of Research Excellence in Science and Technology (NSF-CREST).
As the frenzy surrounding the Aug. 21 solar eclipse begins to peak, physics Professor Wil van Breugel is using the opportunity to give Merced stargazers a crash course in the science and history of these astronomical curiosities.
“It’s important for people to fully appreciate the science,” van Breugel said. “This is an opportunity to try to explain things more fundamentally.”