The American Institute of Chemical Engineers will honor UD's Norman Wagner for his work in fluid-particle systems.

Engineering excellence

UD's Wagner to receive Thomas Baron Award at AIChE national meeting


11:24 a.m., Oct. 10, 2013--Norman Wagner, Alvin B. and Julia O. Stiles Professor and former chair of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware, has been selected to receive the Thomas Baron Award at the American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ (AIChE) annual meeting Nov. 3-8 in San Francisco.

Given annually, the award recognizes outstanding scientific or technical accomplishments that have had significant impact in the field of fluid-particle systems or a related field.

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Wagner, who directs the University’s Center for Neutron Science (CNS), is a world-renowned expert in the area of colloidal suspension rheology. He is credited with advancing understanding of fluid-particle systems comprised of colloidal dispersions and for developing new environments to study these systems under process flow.

This work has been so successful that these sample environments are now a standard part of the normal proposal process at the National Center for Neuron Research at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in the U.S. and the Institut Laue-Langevin, Europe's premier neutron scattering facility in Grenoble, France.

Wagner and his students are also well-known for their work in understanding and developing protective materials based on shear thickening fluid (STF). Working in collaboration with U.S. Army Research Laboratory scientists, he developed liquid armor, a breakthrough technology that integrates shear-thickening fluid-particle systems with ballistic resistant fabrics to provide multi-threat resistance.

This technology is also under evaluation by NASA for use in astronaut and spacecraft protection, and he is co-founder of STF-Technologies, a company commercializing STF-Armor for puncture-resistant surgical gloves. 

In July, Wagner shared his liquid armor research as an invited participant in “We The Geeks,” a White House Google Plus Hangout series on exciting new developments in materials science and how they can change the world for the better. Titled “The Stuff Superheroes Are Made Of,” the Hangout placed Wagner on par with other top science and technology innovators in the nation.

Article by Kevin Cella

Photo by Evan Krape

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