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From diabetes to roller coasters, student research recognized at UH contest
Date:1/30/2008

ngineering, conducts TcSUH research under the mentorship of Gangbing Song, associate professor of mechanical engineering. Chang said she has been interested in physics since elementary school.

I loved going on roller coasters, and in the midst of a ride I would be trying to figure out how all of this worked. I was always aware of the danger the roller coasters could pose, and I became interested in a way of keeping them safe for the public, Chang said. From my research, we can see that there are currently feasible, cost-effective manufacturing techniques to produce nanocomposites with improved properties, as compared to current composite materials. Specifically, my research shows that carbon nanofiber sheet composites have markedly improved vibration-damping properties. This means not only will the material be more effective at resisting fatigue damage related to constant vibration, but also that things like acoustic vibration can be reduced. For example, imagine using these new nanocomposites on airplanes. I just flew back to Houston on an airplane, and the sound of the planes vibrating shell as it passed through the air was just terrible. It gave me a headache. This problem could be attenuated by the new nanocomposites.

Chairs of the event were James Meen, research associate professor of chemistry, and Pei-Herng Hor, associate professor of physics, with welcome and introductions being made by Allan J. Jacobson, director of TcSUH, professor of chemistry and the Robert A. Welch Chair of Science. Judges of the competition were Landes, Physics Professor Wu-Pei Su and Irene Rusakova, a senior research scientist in physics.

TcSUH is internationally recognized for its multidisciplinary research and development of high-temperature superconductors (HTS), biomedical research and applications, and related nano and energy materials.


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Contact: Lisa Merkl
lkmerkl@uh.edu
713-743-8192
University of Houston
Source:Eurekalert

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