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April 21: Materials for Future Technology

Grounds for Science: Materials for Future Technology

Sonia Travaglini & Zi Jing Wong

Thursday April 21

Scarlet City Espresso Bar
3960 Adeline Street
Emeryville, CA 94608

Magnificent mushroom materials!

Sonia Travaglini

Join Sonia Travaglini, the world’s first mycology materials researcher, for an introduction to mycology materials; a bio-composite grown from mushrooms. These materials offer reduced environmental impact, are compostable, and are more pleasing to work with than their synthetic alternatives. Along with describing mycology materials’ unusual closed-loop life-cycle, Sonia will introduce their creation, composition and future development.

Sonia Travaglini, a Ph.D. candidate in mechanical engineering, is studying the properties of part of this eclectic kingdom to find new sources for sustainable composites.  Read more about her research


Sonia Travaglini and her mycology materials in Jacobs Hall. (Photo by Noah Berger)

Realizing invisibility cloaks with metamaterials

Zi Jing Wong

Is invisibility just a fantasy? Or can be it real? In 2006, scientists finally found a way to build invisibility cloaks. It’s based on a new type of artificially-engineered materials called metamaterials. In this talk, Zi Ling will introduce the concept of metamaterials and highlight the key experimental progress, including some of the research efforts at UC Berkeley.

Zi Jing Wong came from Malaysia. He is now a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. Previously he graduated from UC Berkeley (Ph.D. in Mech. Eng.), Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (M.S. in Aerospace Eng., Best Thesis Award) and Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (B.Eng. in Aeronautics, Royal Education Award). He also had short-term research experinces at University of Cambridge, UK and Peking University, China. His research goal is to develop metamaterials with unprecedented optical properties and performances. Read more about research into “Invisibility Cloaks”


A 3D illustration of a metasurface skin cloak made from an ultrathin layer of nanoantennas (gold blocks) covering an arbitrarily shaped object. Light reflects off the cloak (red arrows) as if it were reflecting off a flat mirror.

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