Vivek Sharma

    Email Address:
    College: Engineering Department: Chemical Engineering
    Title: Associate Professor
    Office: EIB 252 Phone: 312-996-5711
    Participating in the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research Awards program: Yes

    Research Interest:
    The goal of Soft Matter ODES group is to specialize in the understanding of, and control over, optics, dynamics, elasticity & self-assembly (ODES) of complex fluids & functional soft materials. We combine experiments and theory to pursue problems in opto-electronics, digital-fluidics, elasto-capillarity and structural-color (ODES) in multicomponent biological and industrial complex fluids and soft materials. The fundamental and applied problems in complex fluids and functional soft materials are selected with focus on energy-related applications, biophysics-driven innovations and engineering-education, as described below and throughout the group website.

    Our primary interests lie in dynamics, rheology and processing of complex fluids and functional soft materials. The formulation and use of inks, paints, blends, coatings, cosmetics, food and pharmaceuticals involve manifested role of deformable interfaces, nonlinear viscoelasticity, flow-induced microstructural changes, instabilities, pattern formation and free-surface flows. The connection between macroscopic rheological (shear, extensional and interfacial) behavior and underlying micro-structural changes/ (or macromolecular deformation) are probed by combining rheometry, microfluidics, optics (imaging, microscopy, spectroscopy) and theory, (as well as true grit and defiant effort). Simultaneously probing and understanding optical and interfacial properties, and non-equilibrium phase behavior of multicomponent complex fluids is necessary for identifying physiochemical basis of observed response.

    Minimum time commitment in hours per week: 6

    Qualifications of a Student:
    High GPA and high level of comfort with physics, mathematics and engineering concepts are preferred. A strong work ethic, curiosity and interest in fluids or optics/imaging are indispensable assets. The projects can be tailored based on experience and expertise of the student.

    Brief Summary of what is expected from the student:
    The student will commit his/her time and effort in conducting experiments using tools & materials provided, followed by tabulating observations (both successes and failures) and will be expected to display an understanding of concepts involved. The successful execution of projects (good experimental results, followed by adequate analysis) will result in co-authored papers, and when possible, in conference presentations.

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