RAPID CITY, S.D. Anna Balazs, a pioneer in the area of predicting the behavior of complex polymeric materials through her theoretical predictions, has been named 2013 Mines Medalist by the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology.
Balazs, Ph.D., is Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh, whose area of expertise is theoretical and computational modeling of polymer blends and composites. She is recognized as a trend-setting researcher who developed powerful, comprehensive computer models to predict the behavior of nanocomposites. These studies provided critically needed guidelines for creating high performance materials formed from polymers and nanoparticles.
She becomes the fifth Mines Medalist to be named by the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology, which founded the national award in 2009 to recognize scientists and engineers who have demonstrated exceptional leadership and innovation.
Dr. Balazs' research has significant impact on the scientific world. She leads a team that predicted the behavior of Belousov-Zhabotinsky (BZ) gels, a gel with far-reaching applications "such as artificial skin that could be sensory a holy grail in robotics," she has said.
"The research being conducted by Anna Balazs has the power to transform lives, and we are excited to name such a distinguished researcher as our 2013 Mines Medalist," said School of Mines Acting President Duane Hrncir, Ph.D.
Her group developed the first computational model to describe large scale deformations and shape changes in chemo-responsive polymer gels. She has also made significant contributions to the area of self-healing materials and has collaborated with experimentalists at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh.
The materials and modeling methods being produced as a result of her work are far-reaching, with her research focusing on a very diverse spectru
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South Dakota School of Mines and Technology