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Mechanical Behavior of Nanostructured Materials

The Gu Group works at the intersection of solid mechanics, materials science and nano-chemistry. We study the mechanical behavior of nanoscale metals and hybrid materials, the effect of strain and crystalline defects on optical nanomaterials, and the self-assembly and 3D printing of nano-architected composites. 

More about us

Featured Works

Elusive 3D printed nanoparticles could lead to new shapeshifting materials

Published in Nature Communications in March 2024!
Colloidal crystals are used to understand fundamentals of atomic rearrangements in condensed matter and build complex metamaterials with unique functionalities. Simulations predict a multitude of self-assembled crystal structures from anisotropic colloids, but these shapes have been challenging to fabricate. Here, we use two-photon lithography to fabricate Archimedean truncated tetrahedrons and self-assemble them under quasi-2D confinement. These particles self-assemble into a hexagonal phase under an in-plane gravitational potential. Under additional gravitational potential, the hexagonal phase transitions into a quasi-diamond two-unit basis. In-situ imaging reveal this phase transition is initiated by an out-of-plane rotation of a particle at a crystalline defect and causes a chain reaction of neighboring particle rotations. Our results provide a framework of studying different structures from hard-particle self-assembly and demonstrates the ability to use confinement to induce unusual phases.

Open Positions

Prospective postdocs and graduate students who have already been accepted to Stanford University can contact us with a CV, and a request to set up a meeting to discuss research interests. 

Gu Group Retreat Fall 2023


Gu Group Fall 2022


Gu Group Summer 2020
Gu Group Summer 2020