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Robert Briber

Professor - Materials Science and Engineering Department - University of Maryland
I have been a professor in the Materials Science and Engineering Department at the University of Maryland since 1992.  After graduating from UMass in 1984, I left Amherst for a National Research Council postdoctoral fellowship at what was then the National Bureau of Standards (NBS) in Gaithersburg Maryland working with Dr. Freddy Khoury (NBS changed its name to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in 1988).  When at UMass my thesis advisor was Professor Ned Thomas and I did my research on the morphology of polyurethanes, including extensive electron microscopy and X-ray scattering experiments.  Working at NBS/NIST was a great experience as there were many experts in polymer morphology and polymer blends, both areas of interest for me.  I stayed at NIST until 1992 when I accepted a position as an assistant professor in materials science and engineering at Maryland.  I had come to the conclusion that I wanted the opportunity to work with students and have more flexibility in expanding my research interests.  In 2003 I became Chair of the Department, a position I held for 12 years.  

I value my time in the PSE Department; it provided an excellent training in polymer science and engineering with great exposure to all aspects of the field. With the many visitors and excellent faculty, I was exposed to many exciting areas of research. In particular I remember many long days and nights running small angle X-ray experiments at Oak Ridge National Lab with my fellow graduate students, something that continues in my group with our experiments and various synchrotron X-ray and neutron scattering facilities around the country.