Materials student earns GOLD
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Materials student earns ‘Gold’ for graduate research presentation

An illustration of the Migration Enhance Encapsulated Growth (MEEG) process to stabilize novel wide-bandgap two-dimensional nitride semiconductors that are not naturally occurring. MEEG is facilitated by defects in the graphene lattice that act as pathways for intercalation. When the gallium and nitrogen atoms meet at the graphene/SiC interface, they chemically react to form two-dimensional gallium nitride.
Image: Z. Al Balushi and Stephen Weitzner / Penn State MatSE

Zakaria Al Balushi, a doctoral candidate in materials science and engineering, was awarded the Materials Research Society (MRS) Gold Graduate Student Award for a presentation on his research on two-dimensional materials.

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“The world around us is always changing—materials are constantly being exposed to different external pressures, external stimuli,” says Zarzar, assistant professor of materials science and engineering and assistant professor of chemistry. “Many materials we use are static in their properties and functions, but I’m interested in designing materials that respond to changes in the environment.”
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