Nanotechnology for the holidays!
In the spirit of the holiday season, the High Performance Materials Institute is presenting the use of nanotechnology and nanomaterials on a Christmas tree! This tree is completely developed and manufactured by the students and researchers at the HPMI at FSU. The electrical wires were created using highly aligned and conducting carbon nanotube sheets and the frame of the tree was made layer by layer using a 3D printer. This effort is part of the recent $1.4 million grant awarded by National Science Foundation to FSU Industrial and Engineering Manufacturing Department, for a project titled "Roll-to-Roll Manufacturing of High Quality Bucky-tape with Aligned and Crosslinked Carbon Nanotubes Through In-line Sensing and Control". The PI of the project, Prof. Richard Liang and co-PI Prof. Arda Vanli are very excited to bring this technology to everyday life with this fun experiment.
The goal of the NSF project is to show the industry the ability to use the carbon nanotube materials in large-scale quantities and to find efficient and cost effective ways to do this. The Christmas tree is part of the outreach activities of the project. Dr. Liang and Vanli will be busy in the next few months for developing a set of simple studies, similar to the Christmas tree, to engage local middle and high schools students in their research. They want to show the students in a fun way the importance of engineering and math skills and the benefits of advanced manufacturing and materials.
In the videos below, Rebekah Downes, a PhD candidate at the IME department and a researcher at HPMI working on this project, explains how she designed and built the tree in her lab. Have fun watching. Merry Christmas and Happy 2014!