| Dr. Gavin Braithwaite
Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
Room 3-259, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
Ph: (617) 253-0273 FAX:(617) 258-8559
| Gavin was
born in 1970 in Dundee, Scotland. He studied for his B.Sc. in Physics
at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1992. He followed this in
1993 with a M.Sc. in Electronics in the Department
of Electronics and Computer Science at Southampton University where
his project was on the software decoding of a low cost digital field telephone
suitable for use in Africa. This involved assembler level coding of a DSP
prototype board. He obtained his doctorate in Chemical Engineering from
Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London in 1997 under
Paul Luckham. His thesis was entitled "Colloidal
Interactions Measured Using a Modified Force Microscope" and involved
the adaption of AFM type techniques to look at the forces ("static" as
well as dynamics) resulting from the interactions of adsorbed polymer layers
in solution. This work was sponsored in part by Kodak European Research
and involved the design and construction of his own force microscope.
Since then he has been employed as a Research Associate at initially Harvard University and, more recently, M.I.T. working on the rheology of thin films of high molecular weight melts. This involves the construction of a "microrheometer" capable of generating an ideal viscometric flow, and hence of determining the apparent rheology, of a confined layer of polymers at separations close to the characteristic scale of the polymers. The main aims of this research are to investigate the no-slip boundary condition for high molecular weight species and the effect it has on the apparent viscosity of the fluid. This is of particular interest in fields such as melt extrusion or lubrication. The instrument should also be useful where only small samples are available and for high imposed strains and strain rates. In addition it will be useful for small volume (or expensive) samples and multiphase systems where the size of the characteristic flow geometry must be close to the particle size (biofluid systems are obvious examples).
His current interests are varied, covering interparticle forces and surface chemistry to the rheology of polymeric systems, but a recurring theme is the behaviour of high molecular weight materials in melt or solution. He is particularly interested in the design and construction of novel experimental apparatus and procedures.
Peer-reviewed publication list:
G.J.C. Braithwaite and G.H. McKinley (1999) "Microrheometry for Studying the Rheology and Dynamics of Polymers near Interfaces", Journal of Applied Rheology, 9, 1, 27-33 (190kB PDF - note not formatted as published)
G.J.C. Braithwaite, P.F. Luckham and A. Howe (1999) "Study of a solvated adsorbed gelatin layer using a modified force microscope", Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 213, 2, 525-545 (note link to Elsevier website - access may be restricted)
G.J.C. Braithwaite and P.F. Luckham (1999) "The Simultaneous Determination of the Forces and Viscoelastic Properties of Adsorbed Polymer Layers", Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 218, 1, 97-111 (note link to Elsevier website - access may be restricted)
G. J. C. Braithwaite (1997) "Colloidal Interactions Measured Using a Modified Force Microscope" In Chemical Engineering, Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine, London University, London, pp. 311.
G.J.C. Braithwaite and P.F. Luckham (1997) "Effect of Molecular Weight on the Interactions between Poly(ethylene Oxide) Layers adsorbed to Glass Surfaces", Journal of the Chemical Society, Faraday Transactions, 93, 7, 1409-1415 (note link is to RSC website - access may be restricted).
G.J.C. Braithwaite, P.F. Luckham and A.M. Howe (1996) "Interactions between Poly(ethyleneoxide) layers adsorbed to glass surfaces probed by using a modified AFM", Langmuir, 12, 17, 4224-4237. (note link is to ACS website - access may be restricted).
G.J.C. Braithwaite and P.F. Luckham (1996) "Study of Attractive Interactions between Poly (Ethylene Oxide) Coated Surfaces Using AFM" In Micro/Nanotribology and its applications (Ed, Bhushan, B.) Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht.
Selected Conference Presentations:
G.J.C. Braithwaite and G.H. McKinley "Micro-rheometry for Polymer Melts and Concentrated Solutions" (246 kB PDF) Presented in the General Session of the 71st Annual Meeting of the Society of Rheology, Madison, Wisconsin. October 17th - 21st 1999.