Science as Art
Mengyuan Li wins "Science as Art"-Award
The natural sciences do not only apply aesthetic criteria to formula and solutions: the "Science as art"-award of the Materials Research Society went to Mengyuan Li, junior researcher at the Max-Planck Institute for Polymer Research. She issued her photograph "Fallen Stars" at the MRS Fall Meeting 2013 in Boston/USA from December 1 to 6, 2013. During the conference the participants could decide which of the 125 pictures suited those best. The majority voted for Mengyuan Li’s shot of polymer crystals under the polarization microscope.
Li is a doctoral candidate in the group of director Paul Blom, under the supervision of project leader Dago de Leeuw, working on organic ferroelectric polymers for memory applications. The ferroelectric characteristics only appear in crystals and are the decisive factor for the use as memory. For this purpose, microscopic thin films from polymers provide a basis and then prepared with different production procedures, which characteristics will be investigated by Mengyuan.
The organic electronics or plastic electronics, how Mengyuan Li the research field calls, was fast-paced during the past years. Promising new applications such as wearable health monitors and smart food packaging that calculate the expiration date require a programmable non-volatile memory.
The scientists in Mainz around Paul Blom and Dago de Leeuw have already made several breakthroughs in the field of plastic memories: they already managed the development of a ferroelectric transistor and a ferroelectric diode made of organic materials. According to Mengyuan Li, the future demand is high, and provides the research topics. Suitable for mass implementation processed crystals with ferroelectric behavior are in a great demand.