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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Brian Collins

Solar energy really gets rolling

Solar panel manufactured on a flexible roll.WSU physicist Brian Collins explores the nano structures of polymers—large molecules with many repeating units. Most of us know polymers from everyday life as plastics. Because they’re flexible, polymers can be used to make all sorts of electronic devices, such as phones—or solar panels.

Primarily made of carbon, one of the first big success stories for polymers in electronics was » More …

WSU physicist receives prestigious U.S. Department of Energy early career award

Brian Collins, assistant professor of physics and astronomy, has received one of only 59 national Early Career Research awards from the U.S. Department of Energy for 2017. Around 700 scientists from across the country applied for the award.

The five-year, $750,000 grant will support Collins and his team of graduate and undergraduate students in their research developing and testing new resonant X-ray scattering techniques that reveal how organic, carbon-based molecules assemble, orient and conform into nanostructures. » More …