Dr. Kai-tak Wan

Associate Professor
Micro/Nano Biomechanical Characterization Lab Website
Room 367, Snell Engineering Center
Mailing Address: Mechanical and Industrial Engineering
334 Snell Engineering Center, Northeastern University
360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA
Email: ktwan@coe.neu.edu
Phone: 617-373-2248
Fax: 617-373-2921

Research Assistantship

Life-sciences and nano-technology are deemed the most promising and lucrative investments in scientific and industrial research in the 21st century. It is the long term goal of National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institute of Health (NIH) to incorporate engineering ingenuity into conventional biomedical and biochemical research in natural, pathological and prosthetic systems. Northeastern University is strategically located in downtown Boston with myriad of prestigious medical schools, teaching hospitals, and biotech companies and spinoffs in the immediate vicinity. The state government of Massachusetts has recently set up a $1billion funding for biotech research and commercialization.

We do not have any graduate assistantship opening at this moment, but undergraduates interested in biomedical research are welcome to contact me at ktwan@coe.neu.edu .

Research Interests

Cellular biomechanics: mechanical characterization and adhesion measurements of single cells and biological tissues, characterization of mouse oocytes and embryos before and after artificial fertilization, mechanical aspects of embryology, and developmental biology.

Tissue engineering: adhesion of mesenchymal stems cells to form tissues, chondrogenesis, morphogenesis, viscoelastic rubber elasticity and fracture of biological tissues, measurements of specific (ligand-receptor) and non-specific (electrostatic, van der Waals) surface forces, diffusion of ligand in and out of adhesion plagues.

Ophthalmology: mechanical aspects of presbyopia and natural accommodation mechanics, characterization of prosthetic hydrogels for cataract ocular lenses, opto-mechano-electro-chemical coupling in vision, characterization of procine, prosthetic and human lenses.

Micro-ElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS): reliability of RF-switches, environmental effects, effects of coupled interfacial adhesion and residual stress, adhesion and delamination mechanics of thin membranes in moveable MEMS parts.

Micro- and nano- structures: collapse of micro-beam and micro-springs network due to intersruface forces and environmental species, molecular dynamics simulation of nano-structures (e.g. bucky balls, graphene sheets, nano-tubes).