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EXPLORE NORTHEASTERN

Laura H. Lewis

Distinguished University and Cabot Professor,  Chemical Engineering
Distinguished University and Cabot Professor,  Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

Contact

Office

  • 447 Snell Engineering Center
  • 617.373.3419

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Research Focus

Structure-property relationships in magnetofunctional materials for energy transformations including advanced permanent magnet materials and magnetocaloric materials; strategic materials for technological application

About

Joined the Chemical Engineering Department in Spring 2007.

Magnetic materials are ubiquitous in society, providing functionality to advanced devices, sensors and motors of every kind. As the magnetic force maintains strength over large distances, it allows for communication between components that are physically separated. This unique property permits the conversion of electrical to mechanical energy, assists microwave devices in telecommunications, transmits and distributes electric power and provides the basis for data storage systems. Magnetic materials are increasingly employed in medical applications, not only in NMR diagnostic equipment but also in specialized targeted cancer treatments and drug delivery protocols. It is anticipated that specialized engineering of magnetic materials and careful tailoring of their properties will enable a new generation of stronger and more responsive materials and devices that can significantly impact the way we use and store energy.

Current research is devoted to understanding magnetostructural transitions, which comprise simultaneous magnetic and structural phase changes. These transitions are attracting new attention due to the recognition that they underlie an assortment of “extreme” phenomena with important technological implications, such as Colossal Magnetoresistance (CMR) of interest for magnetic sensors in the recording industry; the giant Magnetocaloric Effect (MCE) under intense development for CFC-free magnetic refrigeration, and exceptional magnetomechanical behavior for actuators. Magnetostructural transitions may be driven by multitude of physical inputs (magnetic field, temperature, pressure, electric field), implying they may be manipulated to yield a tailored functional response. Our research employs advanced materials probes and techniques (magnetic measurement, advanced electron microscopy and specialized synchrotron scattering and spectroscopic techniques) that are available both at Northeastern University and at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island, New York.

Education

  • B.A. (Physics with Specialization in Earth Sciences) University of California, San Diego, 1985
  • M.S. (Electronic Materials) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1988
  • Ph.D. (Materials Science and Engineering) University of Texas at Austin, 1993

Research Overview

Structure-property relationships in magnetofunctional materials for energy transformations including advanced permanent magnet materials and magnetocaloric materials; strategic materials for technological application

Department Research Areas

Selected Publications

  • B.D. Plouffe, S.K. Murthy, L.H. Lewis, Fundamentals and Application of Magnetic Particles in Cell Isolation and Enrichment: A Review, Reports on Progress in Physics, 78(1), 2015, 016601
  • L.H. Lewis, F.E. Pinkerton, et al., De Magnete et Meteorite: Cosmically-Motivated Materials, IEEE Magnetics Letters, 5, 2014
  • R. McCallum, L.H. Lewis, R. Skomski, M.J. Kramer, I.E. Anderson, Practical Aspects of Modern and Future Permanent Magnets, Annual Review of Materials Research, 44(1), 2014, 451-477
  • L.H. Lewis, F. Jiménez-Villacorta, Perspectives on Permanent Magnetic Materials for Energy Conversion and Power Generation, Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A, 44(1), 2013, 2-20
  • G. Srajer, L.H. Lewis, S.D. Bader, et al., Advances in Nanomagnetism via X-ray Techniques, Review Article, Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, 307(1), 2006, 1-31

Faculty

Jun 25, 2019

Creating Rare Earth-Free Permanent Magnets

ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis was awarded a patent for developing a method to create “Rare earth-free permanent magnetic material”.

Faculty

Jul 26, 2018

Developing Alternatives to Rare Earth Materials

ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis and ECE Professor Vincent Harris are working on alternatives to rare-earth metals which are used from everything from smartphones to guided missiles to reduce our reliance on China.

Faculty

Jul 17, 2018

Prof. Laura H. Lewis Selected for the 2018 Mechanical Engineering Academy of Distinguished Alumni Honorees at UT – Austin

The University of Texas at Austin has selected ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis as one of the “2018 Mechanical Engineering Academy of Distinguished Alumni Honorees”.

Apr 24, 2018

Honoring Highest Achievements

Congratulations to the COE faculty and students that were honored at the 2018 Academic Honors Convocation.

Faculty

Apr 17, 2018

Laura Lewis Appointed University Distinguished Professor

ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis has been appointed the rank of University Distinguished Professor, the highest honor the university can bestow upon a faculty member.

Faculty

Feb 14, 2018

Laura Lewis Invited to Lecture at Magnetism Winter School in Bangkok, Thailand

ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis was one of the invited speakers during the Magnetism Winter School 2018.

Graduate

Nov 20, 2017

Ian McDonald awarded Judge’s Choice in "Magnetism as Art" Showcase

Interdisciplinary PhD student Ian J McDonald of the Nanomagnetism Group, led by ChE/MIE Professor Laura H. Lewis, won the Judge’s Choice in the “Magnetism as Art” Showcase at the Annual Conference on Magnetism and Magnetic Materials.

Graduate

Oct 11, 2017

Lejeune Awarded Department of Energy SCGSR Research Fellowship

Chemical Engineering PhD candidate Brian Lejeune has been awarded DOE Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) Fellowship. Brian is advised by Cabot Professor Laura Lewis holding joint appointments in ChE and MIE. The SCGSR Fellowship will enable him to continue his research on Composition-Lattice Interactions in Intermetallic Ferromagnetic Systems for a period of six months […]

Faculty

Jun 19, 2017

Lewis Wins Fulbright Award to Advance Magnetic Materials Research

ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis has won a Fulbright Award in Spain to advance her research in magnetic materials. Source: News @ Northeastern Laura Lewis, Cabot Professor in the College of Engineering at Northeastern, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program grant for a research project in Spain that will advance her already expansive scholarship in […]

Oct 07, 2016

Lewis Selected as APS Fellow

ChE & MIE Professor Laura Lewis was selected as an American Physical Society fellow.

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