TA Instruments announced the two latest recipients of the company’s Distinguished Young Rheologist award: Dr. Kendra Erk, Assistant Professor of Materials Engineering at Purdue University and Dr. Kelly Schultz, Assistant Professor at the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Lehigh University. Dr. Erk and Dr. Schultz each received the award in recognition of their early career achievements in the field of experimental rheology.
The overall goal of Dr. Erk’s research is to develop a better understanding of important structure-property-processing relationships in a wide range of soft materials and complex fluids with engineering relevance, from superabsorbent hydrogels used as internal curing agents in concrete to polymer-tethered nanoparticles used for roll-to-roll manufacturing of thin film nanocomposites. Dr. Schultz and her research group study emerging hydrogel materials developed for biological applications, such as wound healing and tissue regeneration. Of particular interest is the development of bulk and microrheological techniques that measure how 3D encapsulated human mesenchymal stem cells interact with synthetic hydrogel scaffolds.
Award recipients are nominated by an international panel of the most established and respected academic researchers from the Society of Rheology, including four Bingham Medal recipients. The Distinguished Young Rheologist program is designed to help accelerate the research of new academics through grants for rheometer systems.
“The rheology market is dynamic, growing, and has penetrated every industry and region of the world. Our markets are demanding more research across a broad range of applications. The Distinguished Young Rheologist award supports our commitment to strong partnerships with the academic community. Dr. Erk’s and Dr. Schultz’s research programs demonstrate the critical role that rheological characterization plays in the development of new materials” commented Terry Kelly, President of TA Instruments.
TA Instruments congratulates Dr. Erk and Dr. Schultz on this award and wishes them long and successful careers.