CNSI proctored workshops

Workshops are offered for K-12 teachers throughout the year. See our schedule for more information on upcoming workshops.

Workshop Schedule

THE FOLLOWING WORKSHOPS ARE OFFERED FOR K-12 TEACHERS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR. PLEASE SEE OUR SCHEDULE PAGE FOR MORE INFORMATION ON UPCOMING WORKSHOPS.

Biotoxicity

Colloidal silver is an antifungal agent used in bandages. Unlike silver ion solutions, colloidal silver is toxic to microbes without harming humans. The Biotoxicity experiment tests the ability of colloidal silver to inhibit the rate of yeast cellular respiration (carbon dioxide production) compared to other silver-containing compounds. This experiment highlights the fundamental concepts of respiration, data quantification, and the use of nanotechnology for real-world applications.

The Lotus Effect

This is the elementary version of our nanoscale wetting experiment. The superhydrophobic surfaces experiment blends elements from chemistry, biology, and physics to vividly demonstrate how the incorporation of nanoscale texture at a material’s surface can lead to dramatic changes in certain physical properties such as wettability. Students will learn basic concepts in surface chemistry and discuss emerging industrial applications for materials with these unique characteristics.

Fast Batteries (supercapacitors)

Energy storage is necessary for many important applications such as portable electronics (such as cell phones and wearables), electric vehicles, and renewable energy storage. In this experiment, students will be making and using supercapacitors, which utilize the high surface area of nanostructured carbon to store charge.

Nanoscale Control of Wetting (superhydrophobic surfaces)

The superhydrophobic surfaces experiment blends elements from chemistry, biology, and physics to vividly demonstrate how the incorporation of nanoscale texture at a material’s surface can lead to dramatic changes in certain physical properties such as wettability. Students will learn basic concepts in surface chemistry and discuss emerging industrial applications for materials with these unique characteristics.

Water Filtration

Clean water and water reuse is among the greatest challenges of modern times. In this experiment, affinity and size exclusion methods of filtration are visually explored using various commercial and laboratory nanomaterial-based methods.

Nanoscale Pattering (photolithography)

In this experiment, students use light to transfer a pattern onto a surface, ultimately resulting in a network of very small metal wires on a plastic board. Students can then measure resistance as a function of wire length and wire diameter to explore both the positive and negative resistive aspects of making thing small, but close together. This top-down approach to nanotechnology is commonly used in manufacturing circuit boards for computers and other electronics, and students will learn the very simple chemistry and physics at the core of photolithography.

Biopolymers

Biopolymers are used by all organisms to carry out the functions of life. Beyond their natural functions, biopolymers are useful aids to modern life, serving as stabilizers, thickeners, and gelling agents in applications as diverse as food preparation and wound repair. This workshop is designed to demonstrate that biology depends on the organization of biomolecular scaffolds, called structural biopolymers, at the nanoscale.

Solar Cells

A comprehensive study of solar cells, from device fabrication to performance characterization, will be presented. Several concepts such as the importance of solar energy to the environment, the effect of nanoscience on solar cell performance, and the similarities behind the concepts of photosynthesis and solar cells will be discussed.

Measurement at the Nanoscale

How can you measure that which is unobservable to the naked eye? In this experiment, students use the effects of both light and materials interacting with structures too small for the eye to see to indirectly measure nanoscale features. By exploiting the phenomenon of light interference, we can analyze periodic structures that are too dense for our eye to distinguish.

Biosensors

Sensing is a process of detecting changes in the environment through a pathway of signal, transduction, and response. There are a number of biological sensors that are essential in modern medicine. In this workshop, students will learn about the process of sensing by create a portable colorimetric glucose sensor using a commonly available assay and gels.

GIVE TO SUPPORT A BRIGHTER FUTURE THROUGH NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY

The Nanoscience Workshop for Teachers program is driven by the contribution of graduate students and postdoctoral scholars whose participation is made possible with the support of NSF awards: Material Creation Training Program IGERT, Clean Energy for Green Industry IGERT, and CHE-1112569. Gifts to CNSI’s educational programs help support outreach efforts, learning and training opportunities for future scientists and researchers.

Donate Now