Chemical Engineering

​Zhenan Bao: On a quest to develop artificial skin

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A team of engineers explore how a new kind of wearable electronics could restore sensation to people with prosthetic limbs.

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​Zhenan Bao: On a quest to develop artificial skin
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A team of engineers explore how a new kind of wearable electronics could restore sensation to people with prosthetic limbs.

Can we build better prostheses? | REUTERS/Mary Schwalm

Last modified Fri, 22 Apr, 2016 at 13:57

A super stretchy, self-healing material could lead to artificial muscle

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​Researchers create a polymer that can stretch to 100 times its original length — and even repair itself if punctured.

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Self-healing material could lead to artificial muscle
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​Researchers create polymer that can stretch to 100 times its original length

In this sample of “artificial muscle,” a circle marks the spot where, after the material was deliberately punctured in an experiment, its chemical nature allowed it to heal itself. | Photo courtesy of Bao Research Group

Last modified Mon, 25 Apr, 2016 at 8:38

​John Hennessy: Great leadership can be learned

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Stanford University President John Hennessy offers his take on important leadership qualities, Silicon Valley, and the future of higher education.​

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​John Hennessy: Great leadership can be learned
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Stanford University President John Hennessy offers his take on important leadership qualities, Silicon Valley, and the future of higher education.​

Stanford University President John Hennessy discusses some of the most powerful lessons he’s learned as leader of one of the world’s most complex and dynamic institutions of higher education. In conversation with Tina Seelig, director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, at the DFJ Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders Series, Hennessy also shares insights from his entrepreneurial career in the high-tech industry.

Last modified Wed, 13 Apr, 2016 at 11:44

How could we use the tiniest specs of diamonds?

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Extracting nanodiamonds from crude oil could help produce next-generation tools for imaging and communications.

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How could we use the tiniest specs of diamonds?
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Extracting nanodiamonds from crude oil could help to produce next-generation tools for imaging and communications.

Too small to see with the naked eye, diamondoids are visible only when they clump together in fine, sugar-like crystals like these. | Photo by Christopher Smith, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

Last modified Mon, 11 Apr, 2016 at 8:20

Could a new catalyst use sunlight to efficiently extract hydrogen from water?

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Hydrogen powered vehicles offer a clean alternative to running cars with fossil fuels. This chemical engineering discovery brings that closer to reality.

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Could a new catalyst use sunlight to efficiently extract hydrogen from water?
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Hydrogen powered vehicles offer a clean alternative to running cars with fossil fuels. This chemical engineering discovery brings that closer to reality.

Renewables | Reuters/Mike Blake

Last modified Fri, 1 Apr, 2016 at 8:56

What is the relationship between the brain and risky behavior?

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Research Profile

A study of brain circuitry in rats could shed light on how humans make decisions involving risk.

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How do brains regulate risk?
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A study of brain circuitry in rats could shed light on how humans make decisions involving risk.

Not for everyone | REUTERS/Johansen Laurel/U.S. Navy/Handout

Investigators at Stanford University have identified a small group of nerve cells in a specific brain region of rats whose signaling activity, or lack of it, explains the vast bulk of differences in risk-taking preferences among the animals.

Last modified Wed, 23 Mar, 2016 at 11:40

Eye on the prize: More comfortable contact lenses

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A team of engineers say new insights into human tears could lead to more comfortable lenses.

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Eye on the prize: More comfortable contact lenses
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A team of engineers say new insights into human tears could lead to more comfortable lenses.

Building a better contact lens | Reuters/Lucas Jackson

Last modified Tue, 22 Mar, 2016 at 14:01

Can bioengineering transform cells into drug factories?

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An interdisciplinary research team shows how we just might be able to grow more plentiful and better medicines in the lab.

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Can bioengineering transform cells into drug factories?
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An interdisciplinary research team shows how we just might be able to grow more plentiful and better medicines in the lab.

Collage by Tricia Seibold (source: iStock/aleksandarvelasevic & iStock/CSA-Archive)

Last modified Tue, 22 Mar, 2016 at 14:02

Musical training gives Stanford engineers a creative lift

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A fellowship offered jointly by the School of Engineering and the Friends of Music at Stanford provides music lessons to engineering students.

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Musical training gives Stanford engineers a creative lift
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A fellowship offered jointly by the School of Engineering and the Friends of Music at Stanford provides music lessons to engineering students.

Stanford engineers can get scholarships to study music and other arts.  | REUTERS/Jo Yong-Hak

Last modified Wed, 16 Mar, 2016 at 9:36

Zhenan Bao: On a quest to develop artificial skin

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A team of engineers works on a material that can flex like skin, transmit sensory data to the brain and restore a sense of touch.

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Zhenan Bao: On a quest to develop artificial skin
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A team of engineers works on a material that can flex like skin, transmit sensory data to the brain and restore a sense of touch.

 

Stanford chemical engineering Professor Zhenan Bao has spent a decade trying to develop materials that can flex and heal like skin, and also serve as the sensor net sending touch, temperature and pain signals to the brain. In a scientific journal, Bao’s team recently demonstrated a first — a skin-like material that could detect pressure and transmit signals to nerve cells. In this video, Bao shares how her team’s research could improve our ability to monitor health and potentially add a sense of touch to prosthetic limbs.

Last modified Mon, 14 Mar, 2016 at 12:18