Protein-Nanotube Hybrid

The image depicts a nanobiosensor consisting of a carbon nanotube (gray) covalently attached to the coxsackie-adenovirus receptor (magenta). This device detects the adenovirus, one of the viruses responsible for the common cold, when Knob proteins from the virus capsid (orange) bind to the receptor (magenta). These devices were synthesized in Prof. Charlie Johnson's group.

 

Master of Medical Physics

The Department of Physics and Astronomy in the School of Arts and Sciences, in conjunction with the Departments of Radiology and Radiation Oncology in the School of Medicine, offers the Master of Medical Physics degree. The program is intended for technically prepared college graduates who seek to combine their interests in graduate physics with growing career opportunities in the field of medicine.

 

Topological Insulators

Recent physics research shows how spin-orbit coupling can rearrange electronic bands in a solid to make a "topological insulator" - a new quantum phase of matter with conductive surfaces even though its bulk is insulating.  Penn physicists Professor Charlie Kane and Professor Gene Mele pioneered the theoretical discovery of such materials in 2005.

 

Jammed States of Matter

Almost any system composed of discrete pieces large enough that thermal fluctuations can be ignored can have a jamming transition: a point at which fluid flow is impeded by a change of state into a stable amorphous solid.  The behavior is general enough to explain a pile of sand, a jar of candies, or cars in a traffic jam.  Professor Andrea Liu was involved in recent theoretical breakthroughs in the study of this phenomenon.

 

CNT Transistor with Antibodies

Prof. Charlie Johnson's lab has produced new experiments demonstrating that carbon nanotube transistors (CNT) can detect minute quantities of biomarkers of diseases in less time than conventional methods.  Antibodies attached to 
CNT on a silicon chip change the electrical properties of the chip upon antibody-antigen binding hence detecting disease biomarkers.

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