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Can defects turn inert materials into useful, active ones?

Demonstrating that a material thought to be always chemically inert, hexagonal boron nitride (hBN), can be turned chemically active holds potential for a new class of catalysts with a wide range of applications, according to an international team of...
22-Nov-2021 12:05 PM EST Add to Favorites

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Study challenges standard ideas about piezoelectricity in ferroelectric crystals

For years, researchers believed that the smaller the domain size in a ferroelectric crystal, the greater the piezoelectric properties of the material. However, recent findings by Penn State researchers have raised questions about this standard rule.
18-Nov-2021 2:35 PM EST Add to Favorites

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Key to resilient energy-efficient AI/machine learning may reside in human brain

A clearer understanding of how a type of brain cell known as astrocytes function and can be emulated in the physics of hardware devices, may result in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning that autonomously self-repairs and consumes...
1-Nov-2021 12:35 PM EDT Add to Favorites

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Materials Research Institute names five Roy Award winners

Three Penn State faculty and two graduate students have received the 2021 Rustum and Della Roy Innovation in Materials Research Award.
27-Oct-2021 11:50 AM EDT Add to Favorites

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Getting a head start on a materials research career

Faced with a growing workload in its research labs, the Materials Research Institute (MRI) met the challenge by offering Penn State students an opportunity that most materials science and engineering undergraduates normally never receive.
21-Oct-2021 2:10 PM EDT Add to Favorites

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A new twist on 2D materials may lead to improved electronic, optical devices

A new generation of electronics and optoelectronics may soon be possible by controlling twist angles in a particular type of bilayer 2D material used in these devices, strengthening the intrinsic electric charge that exists between the two layers,...
14-Oct-2021 1:15 PM EDT Add to Favorites

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Penn State Partners with Two Universities for Diversity in Materials Research

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has named Penn State the lead partner to both Florida International University (FIU) and North Carolina Central University (NCCU) as part of the Partnerships for Research and Education in Materials (PREM), a...
10-Sep-2021 8:00 AM EDT Add to Favorites

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Ferroelectrics everywhere?

A new family of ferroelectric materials that could potentially improve information and energy storage came about due to searching for ferroelectricity in places researchers never looked before.
1-Sep-2021 1:30 PM EDT Add to Favorites

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The Penn State Materials Research Institute (MRI) is an interdisciplinary organization for engaging strategic research at the cross-section of education, science, and innovation. Our activities span the physical, engineering, and life sciences, and draw upon the expertise of a diverse faculty in departments across the campus. The key characteristics of this organization are an entrepreneurial and collaborative faculty culture, core facilities with technical staff and state-of-the-art equipment, three buildings dedicated to interdisciplinary materials research, and continuous support provided by the University. Our faculty and programs are driven by excellence in science and education, by long-term partnerships with industry and the Commonwealth, and by a commitment to achieving real world impact.



Jamie Oberdick
Editor of publications


Dave Fecko
Industrial Relations Coordinator
Materials Science



Donna Lucas
Administrative Coordinator