College of Engineering Seminars & Speakers

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Engineering functionality through dynamic visualization and control of atomic motions

Event Type
Mechanical Science and Engineering
4100 Sidney Lu Mechanical Engineering Building
Apr 18, 2022   4:00 pm  
Dr. Aditya Sood, Stanford Institute for Materials and Energy Sciences, Stanford University
Amy Rumsey
Originating Calendar
MechSE Seminars


Advances in energy, computing, and medicine rely on the discovery of dynamic materials, whose properties can be tuned in real-time via external stimuli – this is key to engineering “smart” systems that can respond rapidly to changing environments. This paradigm necessitates a microscopic understanding of how materials respond transiently to external perturbations, which can ultimately drive useful changes in macroscale properties. In this seminar, I will present three examples of functionalities arising from the dynamic modulation of atomic structure on timescales spanning twelve orders of magnitude. On the timescale of seconds, I will show how electrochemical ion insertion into a van der Waals layered material can drive large reversible tuning of heat transport, for applications in dynamic thermal management. On the microsecond timescale, I will demonstrate how electrical excitation of a phase-changing oxide can trigger the formation of a non-equilibrium intermediate state, with implications for energy-efficient computing. Finally, on the picosecond timescale, I will discuss how ultrafast optical excitation can induce giant (>100x) enhancement of apparent thermal transport rates across a 2D atomic heterojunction, a finding that is important for engineering energy dissipation in next-generation optoelectronic devices. Taken together, these results illustrate the power of dynamic control as a tool for “on-demand” programming of materials.

About the Speaker

Dr. Aditya Sood is a postdoctoral Research Scientist at the Stanford Institute for Materials and Energy Sciences (SIMES) at Stanford University & SLAC National Laboratory, working with Prof. Aaron Lindenberg and Prof. William Chueh. He earned his B.Tech. from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur and Ph.D. from Stanford University, both in Materials Science and Engineering. His Ph.D. research was done under the supervision of Prof. Ken Goodson in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford, in close collaboration with the group of Prof. Eric Pop in Electrical Engineering. His interests lie at the intersection of thermal transport, nanoelectronics, and ultrafast physics, with a focus on visualizing and controlling atomistic dynamics across a range of technologically-relevant timescales. He has received the Batra Gold Medal from IIT-Kanpur (2011), the Gold Graduate Student Award from the Materials Research Society (MRS) (2017), the LCLS Young Investigator Award from SLAC National Laboratory (2021), and the MRS Postdoctoral Award (2022). For more information, see: 

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