Chemical Engineering Seminar Series

Thursday, March 30, 2023 at 12:45pm to 1:45pm

Kirk Hall, Cherry Auditorium

Filling, Coating, Separating, and Assembling; Advancing Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube Technologies and Metrology


Jeffrey A Fagan, PhD

Project Leader, Polymers and Complex Fluids

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)


Single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are practically the exemplar nanomaterial, with exceptional optical, mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties.  However, these properties are tied to the specific structure of each of the hundreds of SWCNT species and are also affected by their environment and assembly.  In our efforts at NIST, we use aqueous-phase processing of nanotube dispersions to isolate highly pure populations such as single (n,m) structure (species) and length resolved populations.  Of potentially scalable methods for species refinement, aqueous two-polymer phase extraction (ATPE) is a particularly flexible, tailorable, and scalable route.  In this talk I will present an overview of the separation science of nanotubes with a focus on recent advances in characterization and mechanistic understanding of ATPE that are enabling improved separations of single (n,m) species of SWCNTs.  If time permits, I will also present how we are using these populations in metrology to support developing applications in electronics, single photon sources and sensor devices. 



Dr. Jeffrey Fagan is a staff scientist and the project leader for the Particles, Tubes, and Colloids Project in the Materials Science and Engineering Division of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, Maryland. 


During his NIST career Dr. Fagan has been an author on 90+ peer-reviewed publications in the areas of colloidal and nanoparticle science.  He is particularly known for his work on separation and characterization of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs), including centrifugal separations and isolation of single SWCNT species using aqueous two-phase extraction.  Dr. Fagan has won multiple awards for his work at NIST, including a 2011 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), a NIST Bronze Medal in 2009, a Department of Commerce Silver Medal in 2013, the NIST Sigma Xi chapter’s Young Investigator Award in 2013, and a National Research Council post-doctoral fellowship in 2005. Dr. Fagan earned his BS degree in chemical engineering from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland in 2000, and his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 2005. 


Dr. Fagan additionally serves as the lead scientist for the production of SWCNT standard reference materials (SRMs) at NIST, and is the founding chair (2009) of technical working area (TWA) 34 under the Versailles Project on Advanced Materials (VAMAS, an international pre-standardization organization), focused on fostering development of metrology standards for nanoparticle populations.

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Lectures / Presentations, Virtual / Webinars


Research / Innovation, Science / Technology


Faculty & Staff, Students, Graduate Students, Undergraduate Students

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College of Engineering


College of Engineering, Chemical Engineering

Chemical Engineering
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Claudia Prior

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