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Welcome Professor Rana Ashkar

January 5, 2018

Welcome Professor Rana Ashkar, Assistant Professor of Physics


We welcome Professor Rana Ashkar as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics at Virginia Tech; she is also MII-affiliated faculty member and a member of Center for Soft Matter and Biological Physics. Professor Ashkar obtained her PhD in 2012 from Indiana University where her research focused on experimental condensed matter after receiving her Bachelors in Physics from Lebanese University in 1999 and Master’s in Theoretical Particle Physics at American University of Beirut in 2007 respectively. She has been a Postdoctoral Scholar for the National Institute of Standards and Technology and University of Maryland from 2012 – 2015. She received the Glifford G. Shull fellow at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2015 – 2017. She has received distinguished awards and honors including serving as the Chairperson of the “Women in Neutron Sciences” group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Her scholarly contribution to the field of physics and polymer science highlighted below.

·         “Probing Elastic and Viscous Properties of Phospholipid Bilayers Using Neutron Spin Echo Spectroscopy”, M. Nagao*, E. G. Kelley, R. Ashkar, R. Bradbury, and P. D. Butler, J. Phys. Chem.   Lett., (2017)

·         “Rapid Large-Scale Assembly and Pattern Transfer of One-Dimensional Gold Nanorod Superstructures”, *R. Ashkar, *M. J. A. Hore, X. Ye, B. Natarajan, N. J. Greybush, T. Lam, C. R. Kagan, C. B. Murray, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces.,(2017)                 

  •  “A Computational Approach to Model Neutron Scattering Data from Lipid Bilayers”, Jan-Michael Carrillo*, John Katsaras, Bobby G. Sumpter, and Rana Ashkar*, J. Chem. Theory Comput. (2017)
  • “Multiscale metrologies for process optimization of carbon nanotube polymer composites”, B. Natarajan, N. Orloff, Rana Ashkar, S. Doshi, K. Twedt, A. Krishnamurthy, C. Davis, A. M. Forster, E. Thostenson, J. Obrzut, R. Sharma, and J. A. Liddle*, Carbon (2016)
  • “Graphene nanocomposites with high molecular weight poly(ε-caprolactone) grafts: Controlled synthesis and accelerated crystallization”, †Titash Mondal, †Rana Ashkar, P. Butler, A. Bhowmick* and Ramanan Krishnamoorti*, ACS Macro Lett. (2016).
  • “Lightweight, flexible, high-performance carbon nanotube cables made by scalable flow coating”, Francesca Mirri, Nathan D. Orloff, Rana Ashkar, A. Forster, C. Long, A. Bengio, A. Choi, Y. Luo, A. Hight Walker, P. Butler,  K. Migler, and Matteo Pasquali*, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces (2016)
  • “Wetting-dewetting and dispersion-aggregation transitions are distinct for polymer grafted nanoparticles in chemically dissimilar polymer matrix”, †T. B. Martin, † K. I. Mongcopa, Rana Ashkar, P. Butler, Ramanan Krishnamoorti*, and Arthi Jayaraman*, J. Am. Chem. Soc. (2015).
  • “Tuning membrane thickness fluctuations in model lipid bilayers”, Rana Ashkar, Michihiro Nagao*, P. Butler, A. Woodka, M. K. Sen and Tadanori Koga, Biophys. J. (2015).

“Thermoresponsive PNIPAM coatings on nanostructured gratings for cell alignment and release”, †Mikhail Zhernenkov*, †Rana Ashkar*, Hao Feng, O. Akintewe, N. D.