Soft surface science and engineering - (Prof. Kenneth Wynne, VCU)


“Soft surface science and engineering: serendipitous discoveries (easy) and targeted designand outcomes (tough).”

Prof. Kenneth J. Wynne
Commonwealth Professor, Department of Chemical and Life Science Engineering
Virginia Commonwealth University

Soft surface science and engineering is described involving polydimethylsiloxane and copolyoxetane soft blocks. Serendipitous discoveries (easy) include (1) “contraphilic” wetting behavior whereby the dry surface is hydrophilic and the wet surface is hydrophobic, (2) more fluorous modifier results in reduced oleophobicity, (3) cold crystallization leads to spontaneous superhydrophobic contact angles and high oleophobicity, and (4) network formation temperature controls “sticky” or “slippery” surface character. The latter work is illustrated by the importance of nanostructural control for easy release of ice.
Targeted design to achieve high quaternary charge density on soft surfaces by a modifier approach has been challenging (tough). Progress toward achieving the targeted goals will be described. Physical criteria including stability of charge density at 40 °C monitored by zeta potentials and no leaching of organics in saline media seem easily achievable but have been elusive. These criteria are considered essential for transformation of “soft” biomaterials for urological and related applications.

Speaker Background

• Ph.D. University of Massachusetts; Postdoctoral, U.C. Berkeley
• 1973-2000, Program Officer, Polymer Program, Office of Naval Research
• 1983-1984: Visiting Scientist, Department of Chemical Engineering, Stanford; Visiting Scientist, IBM San Jose
• 2000-2011, Professor, Chemical and Life Science Engineering, Virginia Commonwealth University
• 2011-present, Commonwealth Professor, Chemical and Life Science Engineering, Virginia Commonwealth University
• 2010-present, President, Polymer Exploration Group (PEG LLC) Ashland, VA
• Visiting Scientist, Kyoto University, September-October 2013
• Research interests: Polymer surface science; polymer surface modification; silicones, fluoropolymers, siliceous hybrid polymers, polyurethanes; copolyoxetanes; non-cytotoxic antimicrobials.
• NSF - Special Creativity Award, June 2005
• ACS Fellow, Inaugural Class 2009
• 2003 Chair, Polymer Chemistry Division, American Chemical Society
• Editorial Advisory Boards: 2009-2011, Langmuir, 2009-2011, ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 1990-2012, Journal of Inorganic and Organometallic Polymers 1990-present, Journal of Applied Polymer Science.


Monday, December 7


Michael's Restaurant at Shoreline Park
2960 N. Shoreline Park
Mountain View, CA 94043



6 PM social hour
7 PM dinner
8 PM lecture


Employed/postdoc Student/unemployed/retired
Early Registration  $30 $15
Registration $35 $20
Walk-in (not guaranteed) $40 $25

Lecture-only is free.



We accept cash or checks at the door, or online payment via credit card. No-shows are responsible for full payment of registration fee.


Please register below or contact:

Len Radzilowski
phone: 650-361-3264

Deadline for registration:

11:59PM, Monday, November 30 for early registration discount.
5PM, Friday, December 4 for regular registration.

Dinner Selection:

Seafood - Grilled tilapia with papaya salsa
Chicken - Breast of chicken, Cacciatore
Vegetarian - Penne pasta with grilled zucchini and mozzarella

You should receive confirmation of your registration; if not, please contact us again.

We are sorry but registration for this event is now closed.

Please contact us if you would like to know if spaces are still available.