Thursday, October 09, 2014
Chapman Lecture - Paul McEuen
We were very fortunate last week to host Paul McEuen for our Chapman Lecture series (previous speakers here). NAS member, successful novelist, director of LASSP at Cornell - typical underachiever. The talk was tremendous fun, a look at several cool experiments going on in his lab examining the mechanical properties of graphene (which acts surprisingly like paper, and taught me about the Foppl/von Karman number, \(YL^2/\kappa\), where \(Y\) is the Young's modulus, \(L\) is a relevant length scale, and \(\kappa\) is the bending stiffness) and nanotubes. The best part of the talk (apart from the rendition of the Cornell alma mater as played by electrically plucked carbon nanotubes) was the palpable sense of joy that he conveyed to the students in the audience. He clearly really enjoys the playing-with-toys aspect of research!
Posted by Douglas Natelson at 10:36 PM