WIN Seminar - Professor Alberto Salleo "What Do Polymers Have To Do With Pavlov’s Dog?"

Thursday, April 13, 2017 10:00 am - 11:00 am EDT (GMT -04:00)

The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) presents a seminar by Professor Alberto Salleo,from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Stanford University, California, USA.

What Do Polymers Have To Do With Pavlov’s Dog?

Organic semiconductors are an interesting materials family for number of technologies including solar cells, LEDs, transistors and sensors. The fundamental premise of organic semiconductors is that synthetic chemists can generate materials with properties “on demand”.

Indeed, while organic semiconductors have been around for a while, the preeminent role of the microstructure in governing their properties has often been overlooked. In addition to electronic transport, there has been a recent resurgence of interest in polymers that are able to transport both ions and electrons. These are believed to enable broadening the palette of applications of organic semiconductors, notably to the biological realm. In the last few years there have been demonstrations of organic electronic devices interfacing with neurons or being used as biosensors. In addition to these traditional applications, polymers exhibiting simultaneous electronic and ionic conduction can be used to make a new device that acts as an artificial synapse. This new device outperform its inorganic counterparts in terms of stability, switching energy and ability to finely tune its synaptic plasticity. The device is able to demonstrate real circuits displaying simple associative learning (Pavlov’s Dog) and simulated circuits performing handwriting recognition tasks with record efficiency.

Professor Alberto Salleo

Professor Salleo received his Laurea degree in Chemistry from the University of Rome (Italy) in 1994. He received his M.S. (1998) and Ph.D. (2001) in Materials Science from UC Berkeley investigating optical breakdown in fused silica. He spent 5 years at the Palo Alto Research Center as a postdoc and then a member of the research staff in the Electronic Materials Laboratory before joining the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Stanford University in 2005.