A Cornell-led collaboration harnessed chemical reactions to make microscale origami machines self-fold – freeing them from the liquids in which they usually function, so they can operate in dry... Read more about Self-folding origami machines powered by chemical reaction
Nicholas Abbott received a Bachelor of Engineering
Nicholas Abbott’s research interests revolve around colloidal and interfacial phenomena. They span fundamental issues related to the origins of colloidal interactions through to the application of chemically tailored interfaces in chemical and biological sensors, biomedical devices and separations processes. His research group has designed and synthesized a range of surfactants that incorporate molecular triggers (redox-active and light-sensitive groups) that permit reversible control of surfactant-based properties of aqueous systems. They are exploring their use in separations processes, solar energy harvesting devices, and for the delivery of biomolecules to cells. His research group is also particularly interested in colloidal forces in liquid crystalline phases, and they have designed liquid crystalline interfaces that permit chemical and biomolecular events to be amplified into easily measured signals in sensors. A third area of interest is related to hydrophobic interactions mediated by complex patterns of chemical functionality on the nanoscale. This latter topic is leading to new design rules for molecular self-assembly, molecular recognition and adhesion in aqueous environments. These technical interests are unified by the challenge of understanding molecules and their assemblies at interfaces.
- Complex Fluids and Polymers
- Nanoscale Electronics, Photonics and Materials Processing
- Advanced Materials
- Advanced Materials Processing
- Biomedical Engineering
- Biomolecular Engineering
- Colloids and Interfacial Science
- Drug Delivery and Nanomedicine
- Materials Synthesis and Processing
- Mechanics of Biological Materials
- Microfluidics and Microsystems
- Nanobio Applications
- Polymers and Soft Matter
- Sensors and Actuators
- Surface Science
- Tissue Engineering and Biomaterials
- Sustainable Energy Systems
Nicholas Abbott has taught undergraduate classes in thermodynamics, transport phenomena and introductory colloid and interface science. He has also taught graduate classes in statistical thermodynamics and colloid and interface science.
Noh, J.; Cao, W.; Sun, H.; Yang, Y., Gianneschi, N.C., Abbott, N.L., “Self-Assembly of Macromolecules within Single Topological Defects of Nematic Solvents”, Chem. Mater. 2020, 32(15), 6753-6764.
Nayani, K.; Yang, Y; Yu, H; Jani, P; Mavrikakis, M; Abbott, N. L., “Areas of Opportunity Related to Design of Chemical and Biological Sensors Based on Liquid Crystals”, Liq. Cryst. Today 2020, 29 (2), 24-35.
Nayani, K.; Evans, A. A.; Spagnolie, S. E.; Abbott, N. L., “Dynamic and Reversible Shape Response of Red Blood Cells in Synthetic Liquid Crystals”, PNAS 2020, 117 (42), 26083-26090.
Tsuei, M.; Shivrayan, M.; Kim, Y. -K.; Thayumanavan, S.; Abbott, N. L.; "Optical "Blinking" Triggered by Collisions of Single Supramolecular Assemblies of Amphiphilic Molecules with Interfaces of Liquid Crystals", J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2020, 142(13), 6139-6148.
Yeon, H.; Wang, C.; Gellman, S. H.; Abbott, N. L., "Influence of Immobilized Cations on the Thermodynamic Signature of Hydrophobic Interactions at Chemically Heterogeneous Surfaces", Mol. Syst. Des. Eng. 2020, 5, 835-846.
Fuster, H. A.; Wang, X.; Wang, X.; Bukusoglu, E.; Spagnolie, S. E.; Abbott, N. L., “Programming van der Waals Interactions with Complex Symmetries into Microparticles using Liquid Crystallinity”, Sci. Adv. 2020, 6(25), eabb1327.
Yu, H. Z.; Szilvási, T.,; Wang, K. L; Gold, J. L.; Bao, N.; Twieg, R. J.; Mavrikakis, M.; Abbott, N. L., "Amplification of Elementary Surface Reaction Steps on Transition Metal Surfaces Using Liquid Crystals: Dissociative Adsorption and Dehydrogenation", J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019, 141(40), 16003-16013.
Wang, X.; Zhou, Y., Kim, Y. -K.; Tsuei, M.; Yang, Y.; de Pablo, J. J.; N. L. Abbott*, “Thermally Reconfigurable Janus Droplets with Nematic Liquid Crystalline and Isotropic Perfluorocarbon Oil Compartments”, Soft Matter 2019, 15, 2580-2590.
Abbasi, R.; Jain, R.; Nelson, K.; Busche, D.; Lynn, D. M.; Abbott, N.L., "Polymeric Films Containing Sodium Chlorite That Release Disinfectant Gas Upon Activation with UV Light", Adv. Funct. Mater. 2019, 29, 1804851.
Cheng, K.C.K.; Bedolla-Pantoja, M.A.; Kim, Y.-K.; Gregory, J.V.; Xie, F.; de France, A.; Hussal, C.; Sun, K.; Abbott, N.L.; Lahann, J., "Templated Nanofiber Synthesis via Chemical Vapor Polymerization into Liquid Crystalline Films", Science 2018, 362(6416), 804-808.
Kim, Y.-K.; Wang, X.; Mondkar, P.; Bukusoglu, E.; Abbott, N.L., "Self-reporting and Self-regulating Liquid Crystals", Nature 2018, 557, 539-544.
Cao, Y.; Yu, H.; Abbott, N.L.; Zavala, V.M. “Machine Learning Algorithms for Liquid Crystal-Based Sensors”, ACS Sensors 2018, 3(11), 2237-2245.
Wang, C.; Ma, C.-K.D.; Yeon, H.; Wang, X.; Gellman, S.H.; Abbott, N.L., "Nonadditive Interactions Mediated by Water at Chemically Heterogeneous Surfaces: Nonionic Polar Groups and Hydrophobic Interactions", J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139(51), 18536-18544.
Mushenheim, P. C.; Pendery, J.S.; Weibel, D.B.; Spagnolie, S.E.; Abbott, N.L., “Straining Soft Colloids in Aqueous Nematic Liquid Crystals”, PNAS 2016, 113(20), 5564-5569.
Wang, X.; Kim, Y.; Bukusoglu, E.; Zhang, B.; Miller, D.S.; Abbott, N.L., “Experimental Insights into the Nanostructure of the Cores of Topological Defects in Liquid Crystals”, PRL 2016, 116, 147801.
Wang, X.; Miller, D. S.; Bukusoglu, E.; de Pablo, J. J.; Abbott, N. L., “Topological Defects in Liquid Crystals as Templates for Molecular Self-assembly” Nat. Mater. 2016, 15, 106-112.
Ma, C.D.; Wang, C.; Acevedo-Vélez, C.; Gellman, S.H.; Abbott, N. L., “Modulation of Hydrophobic Interactions by Proximally Immobilized Ions”, Nature 2015, 517, 347-350.
Selected Awards and Honors
2018 Lectureship Award of Division of Colloid and Surface Chemistry, Chemical Society of Japan.
2018 Patten Distinguished Lecture, University of Colorado-Boulder
2018 Reilly Lectures, University of Notre Dame
2017 6th Somer Lectures, Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey.
2016 42nd Annual Harry G. Fair Memorial Lecture, University of Oklahoma
2016 The Willliam H. Schwartz Lecture, The Johns Hopkins University
2016 Elected Fellow of the American Physical Society
2016 American Chemical Society Award in Colloid and Surface Chemistry
2016 Elected to American Institute of Biological and Medical Engineers
2016 42nd Annual Harry G. Fair Memorial Lecture, University of Oklahoma
2015 Founders Lecturer, University of California, Los Angeles
2014 Elected Member of National Academy of Engineering
2013 Pirkey Centennial Lectureship, University of Texas, Austin
2013 Amundson Lectureship, University of Minnesota
1991-1993 Department of Chemistry, Harvard University. Postdoctoral research with George M. Whitesides.
1986-1991 Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Thesis advisors: Daniel Blankschtein and T. Allan Hatton.
1982-1985 Bachelor of Engineering in Chemical Engineering, University of Adelaide, Australia.