Micro- and nanoscale systems exhibit unique properties that can’t be predicted from the theory of large-scale systems

In order to develop new strategic micro- and nanotechnologies, open questions on the behaviour of very small systems need to be addressed. Micro- and nanoscale systems exhibit unique properties that can’t be predicted from the theory of large-scale systems. Our members have played a significant role in addressing these issues.

Research in action

Work by Professor John Dobson and Dr Tim Gould has shown van der Waals interactions between systems with nanoscale dimensions have some unexpected features. Similarly, Dr Owen Jepps, Dr Barbara Johnston and co-workers have developed novel aspects of the theory of fluctuations in confined fluids and the response of systems to changes, such as changing the temperature or application of strain. Collaboration with experimentalists, as well as computer simulations, has allowed some of these results to be tested.

Fundamental theoretical and experimental studies of molecular interactions also allowed predictions on the formation of micro- and nanostructures. These have been used to develop new strategies for applications such as fuel storage.

Another field of interest involves magnetic nanoparticles and their interactions, an area with many open questions and with diverse applications in fields such as microfluidics and cancer treatment.

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