My research focuses on understanding many of the fascinating physical properties exhibited by a wide variety of complex fluids, such as liquid crystals, polymers and proteins in solution. These physical properties include such diverse effects as giant coupling between electric fields and mechanical strains, responses to magnetic, electric and strain fields, super-molecular organization on the nanometer scale, exotic optical properties, electrical transport measurements and electrically induced convective flows.
We have an approach whereby we try to allow the scientific problem at hand determine what experiments are done. Therefore, a very wide variety of techniques are employed, including high resolution, high speed, high sensitivity imaging, advanced optics, small angle x-ray scattering, static and pulsed magnetic and electric fields. This also has lead to a persistent program of accessing the user facilities at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory DC field facility in Tallahassee, FL, and the National Synchrotron Light Source at Brookhaven National Laboratory.