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New professor Xiaoguang Wang publishes in Nature Communications

Professor Xiaoguang William Wang, who joined Ohio State on January 1, 2019 as an assistant professor of chemical engineering, is fast building an impressive list of publications. Having previously published in Nature and Nature Materials, Dr. Wang's first Ohio State publication as an independent researcher appeared in the August 27, 2019 issue of Nature Communications.

Nature Communications is known for publishing high-quality research from all areas of the natural sciences and represents important advances of significance to specialists within each field.

The article, entitled "Micro-/Nano-Voids Guided Two-Stage Film Cracking on Bioinspired Assemblies for High-Performance Electronics," seeks solutions in nature with examples of structural materials and systems with hierarchical design that could help reduce strain-induced cracks in materials used for electronic, optical, or mechanical functions. Professor Wang is the last author on the paper, which includes Dr. Shuang Zheng, Professor Wang’s first postdoc, and Dr. Nan Hu, an assistant professor in civil engineering at Ohio State.

A second independently-done research paper by Professor Wang, "Nanoparticle-Encapsulated Hollow Porous Polymeric Nanosphere Frameworks as Highly Active and Tunable Size-Selective Catalysts," is currently in press in ACS Macro Letters, a well-known polymer journal. The first author of this paper, Dr. Yang Xu, is currently doing a postdoc in Professor Wang's group. 

In addition to now being published in NatureNature Materials, and Nature Communications, Dr. Wang's peer-reviewed articles have been published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences-USAPhysical Review Letters, Journal of the American Chemical Society, and Advanced Materials. In total, he has 31 peer-reviewed articles, four patents, and two additional patents pending.

Professor Wang’s research interests revolve around the design of novel dynamic materials and systems based on colloidal and interfacial phenomena. This knowledge will not only span fundamental understanding but also form the basis of a novel class of stimuli-responsive materials for use in a wide range of technologies.

Wang obtained his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2016, where his doctoral research with Professor Nicholas L. Abbott focused on liquid crystal-templated assembly of colloids and molecules. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University with Professor Joanna Aizenberg on the design of functional materials based on stimuli-responsive soft matter.



Current metal film-based electronics, while sensitive to external stretching, typically fail via uncontrolled cracking under a relatively small strain (~30%), which restricts their practical applications. To address this, here we report a design approach inspired by the stereocilia bundles of a cochlea that uses a hierarchical assembly of interfacial nanowires to retard penetrating cracking. This structured surface outperforms its flat counterparts in stretchability (130% versus 30% tolerable strain) and maintains high sensitivity (minimum detection of 0.005% strain) in response to external stimuli such as sounds and mechanical forces. The enlarged stretchability is attributed to the two-stage cracking process induced by the synergy of micro-voids and nano-voids. In-situ observation confirms that at low strains micro-voids between nanowire clusters guide the process of crack growth, whereas at large strains new cracks are randomly initiated from nano-voids among individual nanowires.


Miao, W.; Yao, Y.; Zhang, Z.; Ma, C.; Li, S.; Tang, J.; Liu, H.; Liu, Z.; Wang, D.; Camburn, M. A.; Fang, J.-C.; Hao, R.; Fang, X.; Zheng, S.; Hu, N.; Wang, X. Micro-/Nano-Voids Guided Two-Stage Film Cracking on Bioinspired Assemblies for High-Performance Electronics. Nature Communications, 2019, 10, 3862.

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