Assistant Professors of Physics Viva Horowitz and Kristen Burson presented papers at the American Physical Society (APS) meeting held March 13 to 17 in New Orleans.

Viva Horowitz
Viva Horowitz

Horowitz presented “Walking the Tightrope: Colloidal surfers mimicking molecular motors.” The paper, co-authored by Horowitz and researchers from New York University and Harvard, describes work the group is doing to help understand cellular processes at a physical level.

Building simple, well-controlled systems to mimic the functions of a cell, the researchers studied the motion of light-activated colloidal surfers that, when activated, are attracted to one another and are self-propelled. The researchers hope “this bio-inspired research may lead to systems of particles walking networks of wires and carrying cargo through an artificial cell.”

Kristen Burson
Kristen Burson

Burson presented “Domain Boundaries and Defect Structures in 2D Insulating Silica Bilayers.” The paper was co-authored by Burson and fellow researchers at the Fritz-Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society in Berlin. It describes results of a scanning tunneling microscopy study with atomic resolution of grain boundaries in silica bilayers grown on Ru(0001).

Burson also chaired a session on the “Surface Science of Organic Molecular Solids, Films, and Nanostructures II” and served as a judge for an undergraduate research poster session.

The APS annual March meeting is attended by thousands of physicists, scientists and journalists from around the world. It provides an opportunity for attendees to network, share insights and establish collaborations. Workshops are offer opportunities for scientific discussion, professional development and science advocacy.

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