Brown University School of Engineering

Carbon Society Honors Professor Robert Hurt

July 31, 2013

Robert Hurt, professor of engineering and director of the Institute for Molecular and Nanoscale Innovation (IMNI) at Brown University, has received the Charles E. Pettinos Award of the American Carbon Society. The award is given every three years to honor “outstanding research accomplishment of an individual or group in the science and/or technology of carbon materials.” The work for which Hurt was honored focused on liquid-crystal-derived carbon materials, graphene-based materials, and on the biological and environmental implications of carbon nanomaterials. Hurt accepted the award earlier this month at the Carbon2013 conference in Rio de Janeiro. At the Carbon 2013 conference Professor Hurt presented his Pettinos Award Lecture titled "House of Cards – New Carbon Architectures through Graphene Self Assembly."

Professor Hurt's research focuses on carbon materials, the behavior of nanomaterials in living systems and the natural environment, safe material design, mesogenic materials, and the novel materials assembled from grapheme precursors.

Professor Hurt’s current research thrusts include the biological response to graphene-family nanomaterials, mechanisms of carbon nanotube uptake and toxicity, nano-silver and nano-copper transformations in the natural environment, safe material design, and the assembly and folding of graphene to make three-dimensional architectures for barrier and encapsulation technologies, and as electrodes for battery and supercapacitor applications.

He received his B.S. from Michigan Technological University and a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, both in chemical engineering. Before joining Brown University in 1994, Hurt held posts at Bayer AG in Leverkusen, Germany and Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, California. He served 2004-2010 as Editor of Carbon and became Editor-in-Chief in January. 2013. He has been Technical Program Chair for the International Carbon Conference and Graffin Lecturer of the American Carbon Society. He has received the Silver Medal of the Combustion Institute and the Tau Beta Pi teaching award at Brown University.