Dear Members of the University of Delaware's College of Engineering Summer Research Program:
I am writing to you because of my strong interest in participating in the 2013 Summer Research Program at the University of Delaware. I learned about this summer program from a message forwarded to the Universidad del Valle (where I am working) which was written by Professor Gonzalo R. Arce from the University of Delaware's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
As a young Colombian researcher, I believe this experience would be a unique opportunity that would enhance my skills because I would have access to high-tech laboratories, and I would have the chance of working with the broad experience of the professors. Additionally, this program would allow me to know both the educational system and the work environment in the USA and evaluate the possibility to do my Ph.D. in this country.
As you can see in my resume, after more than two years I have been studying the mechanical behavior of auxetic materials in order to apply them in different engineering fields (e.g. civil, aerospace, automotive). These materials have attracted significant attention because their negative Poisson's ratio can lead to enhancement in other mechanical properties, including shear modulus, indentation resistance, dynamic properties and fracture toughness.
Currently, my research interests are focused in the modeling and mechanical characterization of auxetic nanomaterials. In particular, I would like to determine during the 2013 Summer Research Program if the presence of vacancies in graphenes cause an auxetic behavior in these nanostructures (similar to what occurs in non-reconstructed defective single-wall carbon nanotubes).
If this hypothesis is true, the modeling and characterization of the mechanical properties (e.g. Poisson ratio, elasticity modulus, shear modulus) of graphenes with different types of vacancies could lead to some very interesting potential applications, such as nanoscillators, reinforcing ﬁbres for nanocomposites and elastic strings in nanoscale energy storage devices.
In this sense, Professors Erik T. Thostenson, Jonghwan Suhr and Tsu-Wei Chou (faculty members at the University of Delaware) could lead my research during the 2013 Summer Research Program because their research activities in Nanotechnology and Composite Materials are focused in my interest areas: synthesis, modeling and characterization of nanomaterials, nanostructured materials, multiscale composites and nanocomposites.
My resume and a copy of my paper “Hexagonal chiral structures with negative Poisson’s ratio under in-plane uniaxial loading” are enclosed for your consideration.
Thank you for taking the time to review my application. I look forward to receiving your reply.