AMLCI Materials Day 2024







Where & When

Materials Day will take place in Samsung Auditorium in the Liquid Crystal Materials Science Building (LCM-101) on Kent State University's Kent Campus. The street address is 1425 Lefton Esplanade, Kent, Ohio.

Parking locations near the building are noted below with red markers. The Samsung Auditorium is in the north wing of the building on the first floor, indicated by a yellow arrow.

Where to park near LCM. There are parking lots to the North, Northeast, East, and South of the building

April 5, 2024 - Friday

5: 00pm - Opening Remarks

5:05 pm - Keynote Speaker: Nicholas L. Abbott (Tisch University Professor, Smith School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Cornell University) “Synthetic Liquid Crystalline Materials Driven by Chemical Catalysis”

6:00 pm - Refreshments

6:20 pm - TED talks from four Fellowship Awardees

Glenn H. Brown Fellowship: For outstanding graduate students who are engaged in research on biological or biology related topics of liquid crystals.

Alfred Saupe Fellowship: For outstanding graduate students working on physics or material sciences of liquid crystals.

James Fergason Fellowship: For outstanding graduate students working on applied research using liquid crystals.

7:15 pm - Closing


April 6, 2024 - Saturday

9:00 am - Featured talk: Cherie R. Kagan (Stephen J. Angello Professor, Professor of Electrical and Systems Engineering, University of Pennsylvania) “Three-Dimensional Colloidal Nanocrystal Metamaterials”

9:40 am - Invited Speakers

10:20 am - Coffee break

10:40 am - Invited Speakers

12:00 pm - Lunch Break and AMLCI Tours

1:30 pm - Invited Speakers

2:10 pm - AMLCI-DI Materials & Devices Start-Up Challenge - Pitch Presentations

2:40 pm -  Coffee break

3:00 pm - Young Investigator Session

5:00 pm - Closing




The theme of the 2024 AMLCI Materials Day “Optics & Devices” recognizes not only the need for new types of devices and more energy efficient materials applications but also the significant history and impact of liquid  crystals in the many day-to-day devices we use. Research has further shown how various types of soft matter form the basis for optical sensors, biomedical devices, or VAR applications. The keynote, presented by Prof.  Nicholas Abbott from Cornell University, “Synthetic Liquid Crystalline Materials Driven by Chemical Catalysis”, will be a testament to this notion that liquid crystals continue to be unique materials for visualizing and quantifying a range of chemical processes. MD2024 will attempt to capture the tremendous role liquid crystals and other materials can play in optics and devices and will continue to play in the future. 

This year, Materials Day 2024 is co-hosted by the AMLCI and Kent Display, Inc. (makers of BoogieBoard®), and we will this year convene in the Liquid Crystal & Materials Science Building (with lectures in the newly renovated Samsung Auditorium) on the KSU main campus. Topics will range from sensors and metamaterials to circular luminescence generation and liquid crystal lenses, among others. In addition, MD2024 is the venue where we will listen to pitch presentations from recipients of funding from the AMLCI−DI “Materials & Devices Start-Up Challenge”; a competition for multidisciplinary entrepreneurial teams to generate ideas, develop prototypes, and create a business model toward the generation of a minimum viable product (MVP). Finally, the Monday after the event will be the day of the Ohio total solar eclipse, a particular rare optical event and Kent is fully in the path.




“Synthetic Liquid Crystalline Materials Driven by Chemical Catalysis”

Nicholas L. Abbott, Tisch University Professor
Smith School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Nicholas Abbott of Cornell University

Friday, April 5th, 5:10 p.m. (EST) - Samsung Auditorium (LCM Building) Microtubules and catalytic motor proteins underlie the microscale actuation of living materials, and they have been used in reconstituted systems to harness chemical energy to drive new states of organization of soft matter (e.g., liquid crystals (LCs)). Such materials, however, are fragile and challenging to translate to technological contexts. This presentation will explore fresh ideas for chemomechanical transduction based on behaviors of LCs at inorganic interfaces capable of catalyzing chemical and photochemical reactions. Mechanisms by which chemomechanical transduction occur will be discussed, using examples spanning lyotropic and thermotropic LCs systems. An outlook on potential technological opportunities based on chemically-driven microscale liquid crystalline materials will be presented

Depiction of chemomechanical using a thermotropic nematic liquid crystal at an inorganic interface; credit: N.L. Abbott













Kent Displays