Faculty Directory
Monica Olvera de la Cruz

Lawyer Taylor Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, Chemistry and (by courtesy) Chemical and Biological Engineering, Physics and Astronomy

Contact

2220 Campus Drive
Cook Hall 2036
Evanston, IL 60208

847-491-7801Email Monica Olvera de la Cruz

Website

Olvera de la Cruz Group


Departments

Materials Science and Engineering

Chemical and Biological Engineering


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Education

Ph.D. Physics, Cambridge University, Cambridge, England

B.A. Physics, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM), Mexico City, Mexico


Research Interests

Research in the Olvera de la Cruz group is centered around the development of models to describe the self-assembly of heterogeneous molecules including amphiphiles, copolymers and synthetic and biological polyelectrolytes, as well as the segregation and interface adsorption in multicomponent complex fluids. Work by the group has resulted in a revised model of ionic-driven assembly: demonstrating the electrostatic spontaneous symmetry breaking of ionic fibers and membranes, and identifying its relevance to biological functions and to the design of functional materials. The group's investigations into soft and condensed matter physics have advanced scientific knowledge and opened new research fields of technological importance, including: gel electrophoreses dynamics, self-organization of molecular electrolytes into bio-mimetic materials, self-assembly of heterogeneous molecules into complex nano-structures, interface adsorption and phase segregation dynamics and structure of multicomponent fluids.


Significant Recognition

  • National Institutes of Health FIRST Award, 1988–93
  • David and Lucille Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering, 1989–94
  • Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship, 1990–92
  • NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award, 1990–95
  • Fellow of the American Physical Society, 2001
  • Engineering and Applied Sciences Cozzarelli Prize, Proceeding of the National Academies, National Academies, 2007
  • 2010 American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow
  • 2010-2015 National Security Science and Engineering Faculty Fellowship
  • 2012 Elected member of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 2013 Distinguished Lecturer, Mathematical Physical Sciences Directorate, National Science Foundation
  • 2017 Polymer Prize of the American Physical Society

Significant Professional Service

  • Scientific Member, Commissariat a l’Énergie Atomique (CE-SACLAY), 1995-97
  • NSF Opportunities in Materials Theory, speaker, 2000
  • Scientific Visitor, Service de Physique Théorique, CE-SACLAY, France, 2003
  • NSF Role of Theory in Biological Physics and Materials, organizer & speaker, 2004
  • Baetjer Lecturer, Princeton University, 2005
  • Editorial Board of the Journal of Polymer Science B: Polymer Physics, 2000-06
  • Advisory Committee, NSF Mathematical and Physical Sciences Directorate, 2005-09
  • Solid State Science Committee, National Research Council, 2006-09
  • Research at the Intersection of Physical and Life Sciences Committee, National Research Council, National Academies, 2007-09
  • Editorial Board of Macromolecules
  • Vice-chair Solid Sate Science Committee, National Research Council, 2008-10
  • Chair, Advisory Committee, NSF Division of Materials Research, 2007-09
  • Member, National Research Council Board of Physics and Astronomy
  • Chair, Condensed Matter and Materials Research Committee, National Research Council, 2010-12
  • Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee, Department of Energy, 2013-2015

Selected Publications