Algorithmic Design of Self-Folding Polyhedra
Govind Menon, Brown University, Providence, USA

A fascinating new direction in materials science is the biomimetic use of self-assembly as a paradigm for microfabrication of complex three dimensional structures. In the past ten years, basic geometric shapes such as polyhedra have been built in many ingenious experiments on scales ranging from 1 nm - 1 mm.
However, there are few principles that guide the a priori design of self-assembling systems (to maximize yield, for example). A common obstruction is the need to search within a large space of possible configurations. I will describe our work on one such design problem for surface tension driven "self-folding polyhedra".

This work is in collaboration with David Gracias' lab at Johns Hopkins.

Talk reference:

Algorithmic Design of Self-Folding Polyhedra, S. Pandey, M. Ewing, A. Kunas, N. Nguyen, D. Gracias and G. Menon*, PNAS, Oct. 28, 2011.

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