Ronald Larson is the A.H. White and G.G. Brown Professor of Chemical Engineering. He is affiliated with the departments of Chemical Engineering, Macromolecular Science, Biomedical Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering. He currently serves as interim Chair of Biomedical Engineering. Larson’s research interests include theory and simulations of the structure and flow properties of viscous or elastic fluids, sometimes called “complex fluids,” which include polymers, colloids, surfactant-containing fluids, liquid crystals, and biological macromolecules such as DNA, proteins, and lipid membranes. He also studies computational fluid mechanics, including microfluidics, and transport modeling, using mesoscopic and macroscopic simulation methods. He has written numerous scientific papers and two books on these subjects, including a 1998 textbook, “The Structure and Rheology of Complex Fluids.”
Sharon Glotzer is a Professor of Chemical Engineering and of Material Science and Engineering. The Glotzer group uses computer simulations to discover the fundamental principles by which nanoscale systems of building blocks self-assemble into higher order, complex, and often hierarchical structures. Their goal is to learn how to manipulate matter at the molecular, nanoparticle, and colloidal scales to create “designer” structures through assembly engineering. Using molecular dynamics and Monte Carlo simulation codes developed in-house for graphics processors (GPUs) and scalable to large hybrid CPU/GPU clusters, they are the leading computational assembly group in the world, with the most powerful codes for studying assembly and packing. Among others, they are the lead developer of HOOMD-Blue, the fastest molecular dynamics code written solely for GPUs and distributed freely as open source software on codeblue.umich.edu. Based on the fundament scientific principles of assembly gleaned from their studies, they carry out high throughout simulations for materials by design, contributing to the national Materials Genome Initiative.