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Poro-Vascular Composites: Combining Structural Support and Surface Roughness Control

Friday, October 13, 2017, 2:00 PM
Nedderman Hall 105

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Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Seminar

Russell Reid, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Energy Engineering
University of North Texas


Engineering design in recent years has moved toward combining capabilities from more than one material into a single material/component. These multifunctional materials simplify design and conserve space while enhancing device capabilities. Poro-vascular composites (PVCs) are multifunctional structural laminates having an array of surface pores where liquid menisci can be controlled to produce domed, flat, or dimpled surfaces. Liquid control is accomplished through a combination of displacement pumping and electrowetting on dielectric (EWOD). PVCs may be useful in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to provide structural support while at the same time replacing conventional boundary layer trip strips and decreasing dependence on bulky servos and flaps used for aerodynamic maneuvering. This presentation describes the PVC vision and recent progress on PVC component design that has led to improved menisci shape control and reversibility.


Russell Reid recently joined the University of North Texas’ Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering as an assistant professor. Prior to this, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in the Materials Science & Technology Division, where he researched fundamentals and applications related to electrowetting. He has bachelor’s and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering from Brigham Young University and the University of Utah, respectively, and a master’s degree in systems engineering from the University of Virginia. Between his master’s and Ph.D., Reid worked for six years in industry doing engineering consulting and aftermarket commercial aircraft component desing. In addition to electrowetting, Reid is also currently interested in ionic/electronic transport in biofuel cells and biosensors, especially as related to electrode structure and materials.

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