Overview

Our research focuses on understanding the dynamics of soft materials using single molecule techniques and microscopy. We are particularly interested in the non-equilibrium dynamics of polymers, biohybrid materials, and vesicles using single molecule fluorescence microscopy. We also study the directed assembly of biohybrid and pi-conjugated polymers, in addition to the direct measurement of single molecule conductance using a scanning tunneling microscopy-break junction (STM-BJ) method. Overall, we aim to understand how microscopic properties give rise to the emergent properties of materials, which is rooted in fundamental concepts in transport, fluids, and thermodynamics.

 

Recent News

  • July 2018 – Our paper on single molecule studies of entangled polymer relaxation was published in Physical Review Letters. This work was covered by several news articles (EurekAlert and Phys.org) and was featured on the NSF Homepage. Congrats to Peter Zhou!
  • June 2018 – Schroeder group members Shivani Patel, Channing Richter, Eddie Jira, and Dinesh Kumar participated in the high school outreach program GAMES camp activities (Girls Adventures in Mathematics, Engineering, and Science). We built foldscopes, which are 50-cent paper microscopes, and learned about optical resolution. A fun time for all!
  • May 2018 – Charles will become a Full-time core member of the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science & Technology at the University of Illinois. Very excited to join the Beckman team and to form a collaborative group focused on molecular science!
  • May 2018 – Charles attended the 70th Birthday Symposium for Steve Chu at Stanford. Congrats to an amazing scientist and mentor. Thank you Steve!
  • May 2018 – Peter Zhou was awarded the Outstanding Student Research Award at the CACS Great Lakes Chapter 22nd Annual Conference in Chicago, IL. Congrats to Peter!
  • May 2018 – Former PhD student Amanda Marciel has accepted a tenure-track faculty position in the Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering at Rice University starting in Jan 2019. Congrats to Amanda!
  • May 2018 – Congratulations (again!) to Peter Zhou, who was selected selected as a finalist for the 2018 AIChE Area 8A Excellence in Graduate Research Symposium. Way to go!
  • April 2018 – Congratulations to Peter Zhou, who was selected as a finalist for the prestigious Racheff-Intell Award in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.
  • April 2018 – Congratulations to Eddie Jira, who received a Beckman Graduate Fellowship for 2018-19. Eddie will be working to build and develop a Molecule Maker in the Beckman to democratize the synthesis of complex small molecules. Exciting work!
  • April 2018 – Congratulations to undergrad research assistant Channing Richter, who was awarded a summer Undergraduate Research Grant to work in the group over the summer. Channing will be studying the non-equilibrium dynamics of polymersomes in flow.
  • April 2018 – Charles Schroeder and Ying Diao received a seed grant from the Illinois MRSEC. Charles and Ying are working to develop new strategies for deformable and functional interfaces for 2D bioactive materials. We are excited to join and become part of the MRSEC at Illinois!
  • April 2018 – We welcome Hao Yu to the group! Hao is a graduate student in the PhD program in ChBE co-advised between Jeff Moore and Charles Schroeder.
  • March 2018 – Charles gave an invited talk in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Southern Illinois University. Many thanks to Keith Gagnon for the invitation to visit!
  • March 2018 – Peter Zhou, Bo Li, Songsong Li, and Charles attended the 2018 March APS meeting in Los Angeles. Peter, Bo, and Songsong presented on their research, and Charles chaired an invited session on recent advances in single polymer dynamics.
  • February 2018 – Our recent paper on the direct imaging of single thermo-responsive polymers has been accepted at ACS Macro Letters. Congrats to Songsong Li!
  • February 2018 – Charles returned from giving a talk at the Gordon Research Conference on Colloidal, Macromolecular, and Polyelectrolyte Solutions. Thanks to Eric Furst and Wilson Poon for organizing an excellent meeting!
  • January 2018 – Our recent paper on the dynamics of single comb polymers in extensional flow has been accepted at Macromolecules. Congrats to Danielle Mai and to our collaborators Amir Saadat and Bamin Khomami!
  • January 2018 – Our review article on single polymer dynamics was published in the Journal of Rheology as the inaugural review article for JOR and was featured on the cover.
  • December 2017 – Charles gave an invited talk at an international workshop on “Protein-DNA Interactions: From Biophysics to Cancer Biology” at Rice University. Many thanks to Anatoly Kolomeisky and conference organizers for a great meeting!
  • November 2017 – Our recent paper on structure formation and dynamics in concentrated suspensions of film-forming latex colloids has been accepted at Physical Review Fluids. Congrats to Subha Kumar!
  • November 2017 – Our recent paper on pi-conjugated peptide assembly using colloidal microchannels has been accepted at ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces! Congrats to Bo Li and all co-authors and collaborators.
  • November 2017 – Charles attended the Annual AIChE meeting in Minneapolis, MN. A great venue to meet up with fellow chemical engineers and discuss science.
  • October 2017 – Thanks to Tom Truskett and the Department of Chemical Engineering at UT Austin for hosting a great visit to the department. Very enjoyable scientific discussions!
  • October 2017 – We welcome new group member Eddie Jira, who is a first year Ph.D. student in the Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering. Welcome to the group!
  • October 2017 – Peter Zhou, Dinesh Kumar, and Charles presented at the Society of Rheology 89th Annual Meeting in Denver, CO. Overall a great meeting with many exciting talks in the field!
  • October 2017 – Charles was featured in a video profile for faculty members in the School of Chemical Sciences at Illinois. Here is the link.
  • September 2017 – Charles has joined an exciting new research group at the Beckman Institute called Computational Molecular Science. For more information, see the news link here.
  • August 2017 – We welcome new group member Jin Yu, who is a Ph.D. student in Materials Science & Engineering. Welcome to the group, Jin!
  • August 2017 – Congratulations to Michael Tu and Dinesh Kumar, both of whom recently passed the PhD Qualification Exams in Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering! Congrats!
  • August 2017 – Our recent paper on the elasticity of bottlebrush polymers has been accepted at Physical Review Letters. This work was a collaboration with Omar Saleh’s group at UCSB.
  • August 2017 – Charles has been promoted to the rank of Professor of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering.
  • August 2017 – Congrats to Schroeder Group alum Eric Johnson-Chavarria, who has been selected as an NIH-AAAS Science and Technology Fellow, working in the Structural Biology Molecular Applications Branch (SBMAB). Eric will be working to help bring promising technologies to answer the challenges facing the cancer moonshot initiatives.
  • August 2017 – Our recent paper on developing a new microrheological technique to measure extensional viscosity of polymer solutions has been accepted at Physics of Fluids. Congrats to Kaiwen Hsiao and collaborators Jelena Dinic and Vivek Sharma!
  • August 2017 – Our recent paper on the sol-gel transition, microrheology, and optical properties of pi-conjugated oligopeptides has been accepted at ACS Central Science. Congrats to Peter Zhou, Songsong Li, and Bo Li!
  • August 2017 – Dr. Melikhan Tanyeri, a former postdoctoral fellow in the Schroeder group, has accepted a tenure-track position in the Biomedical Engineering Department at Duquesne University. Congrats to Melikhan!
  • May 2017 – Congratulations to Schroeder group alum Arnab Mukherjee (Ph.D., Illinois ChBE, 2014), who has accepted a position as assistant professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of California-Santa Barbara starting in Fall 2017. Congrats and best wishes to Arnab!