Research Physical

Physical Research

The Department of Chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, offers a wide range of research opportunities in theoretical and experimental physical chemistry. Our program has broadened from its traditional areas of excellence in molecular chemical physics to include research activities in biophysical and materials sciences. Experimental efforts within these areas involve development and applications of state-of-the-art instrumentations, such as high-resolution ultra-fast laser systems, molecular beam techniques, multi-dimensional spectroscopies, and near-field optics, et cetera.

In addition to traditional areas of chemical theory, recent theoretical chemistry research involves development and applications of new computational methods in quantum/statistical mechanics and polymer physics for studying novel physical phenomena in a wide range of systems from nano-materials to biological membranes. Students have access to several massively parallel high-performance computers at UNC Research Computing, one of the best university computing facilities in the country.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is also home to home to a number of theoretical/computational research groups that are interested in studying exciting problems in molecular, materials, and condensed matter sciences.

Recent Research Results

Emergence and Breaking of Duality Symmetry in Generalized Fundamental Thermodynamic Relations

This theory provides a de-mechanized foundation for classical and nanothermodynamics and offers a framework for distilling emergence from large data, free from underlying details.

Controversy Continues Over Whether Hot Water Freezes Faster Than Cold

Decades after a Tanzanian teenager initiated study of the “Mpemba effect,” the effort to confirm or refute it is leading physicists toward new theories about how substances relax to equilibrium.

Sloppy gear mechanism for coupled stochastic transportation: From antiequilibrium flow to kinetic selectivity

Here, using a simple kinetic model, we present a counterintuitive antiequilibrium phenomenon in the passive transportation of particles through a narrow tube.

Representative Publications

Journal of Chemical Physics.
Multidimensional time-of-flight spectroscopy Zhenyu Ouyang, Ninghao Zhou, Meredith G. McNamee, Liang Yan, Olivia F. Williams, Wei You and Andrew M. Moran Journal of Chemical Physics 2021 154 (22), 220901 DOI: 10.1063/5.0047382

Electrochemical quantification of accelerated FADGDH rates in aqueous nanodroplets Kathryn J. Vannoy, Inyoung Lee, Koji Sode and Jeffrey E. Dick PNAS June 22, 2021 118 (25), e2025726118 DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2025726118

The Journal of Physical Chemistry.
Stretch-Induced Cavitation: How Critical Cavity Radius and Barrier Energy, Radius, and Energy of a Stable Cavity Depend on the Stretching Factor Max L. Berkowitz The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 2021 125 (17), 4409-4414 DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.1c00096

Biomaterials Science.
Coating small-diameter ePTFE vascular grafts with tunable poly(diol-co-citrate-co-ascorbate) elastomers to reduce neointimal hyperplasia Lu Yu, Emily R. Newton, David C. Gillis, Kui Sun, Brian C. Cooley, Andrew N. Keith, Sergei S. Sheiko, Nick D. Tsihlis, and Melina R. Kibbe Biomaterials Science 2021, Advance Article DOI: 10.1039/D1BM00101A

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