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Undergraduate and Graduate Studies

Physics Colloquium: David Weitz (Harvard) - "The Magic of Microfluidics: Dripping, Jetting, Drops & Wetting"

January 27, 2017 - 6:30pm

Title:   The Magic of Microfluidics: Dripping, Jetting, Drops & Wetting

This talk will discuss the use of microfluidic devices to precisely control the flow and mixing of fluids to make drops, and will explore a variety of uses of these drops. These drops can be used to create new materials that are difficult to synthesize with any other method. These materials exhibit fascinating physical properties and have great potential for practical uses. I will also show how the exquisite control afforded by microfluidic devices provides enabling technology to use droplets as microreactors to perform reactions at remarkably high rates using very small quantities of fluids. This allows them to be used to explore fundamental properties of systems biology. He will also briefly talk about a very popular General Education science course that he created, “Science and Cooking“ (



Weitz received his PhD in physics from Harvard University and then joined Exxon Research and Engineering Company, where he worked for nearly 18 years. He then became a professor of physics at the University of Pennsylvania and moved to Harvard at the end of the last millennium as professor of physics and applied physics. He leads a large and active group studying soft matter science with a focus on materials science, biophysics and microfluidics. Several startup companies have come from his lab to use some of the technologies developed in his research. Weitz is also the director of Harvard’s NSF-funded Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC). He is the co-director of the BASF Advanced Research Initiative at Harvard, co-director of the Harvard Kavli Institute for Bionano Science & Technology. He is best known for his work in the areas of diffusing-wave spectroscopy, microrheology, microfluidics, rheology, fluid mechanics, interface and colloid science, colloid chemistry, biophysics, complex fluids, soft condensed matter physics, the study of glass and amorphous solids, self-assembly and diffusion-limited aggregation. Several startup companies have come from his lab to use some of the technologies developed in his research.


Every Friday 10:45-11:45 a.m., COB 267 (except as noted). Refreshments will be served from 10:30 - 10:45 a.m. Questions regarding the seminar series should be directed to Prof. Bin Liu