Liquid Crystal & Nanocomposite Laboratory - Hegmann Group


Welcome to the Hegmann Group websites @ KSU

Our research featured on the Covers of:

Internal Links:



Faculty & Staff


The research of my group focuses on three major project themes: 
Understanding interactions in nanomaterial - soft matter dispersions and composites, 
Synthesis, self-assembly, and applications of anisometric nanomaterials, and 
Devices and applications based on unique combinations of nanomaterials and liquid crystals.

This research is highly interdisciplinary and collaborative. Students at all levels as well as postdocs working on these research themes develop wide-ranging skills in organic and nanoscale materials synthesis, materials characterization techniques as well as in soft matter physics and in some instances biological sciences. We enjoy vital collaborations with experts in their respective fields, which are critical when tackling multidisciplinary research targets. 
Significant research targets for liquid crystal–nanoparticle dispersions are tunable optical materials, responsive plasmonic materials, sensors, and various types of liquid crystal devices. The study of such systems in our lab focuses on investigating mutually beneficial combinations of the unique properties of both liquid crystals and particles at the nanoscale. The key topics in our research are:

Understanding, visualizing, and measuring nanoscale chirality
Sensors including thermal, toxic gases and vapors, others
Engineered assembly and self-organization of nano- and other emissive materials
New materials and phases (some related to LC optical applications)
Nanoparticles in defects
We are using a wide variety of techniques and instruments to analyze and characterize the materials we make including NMR, MS, FT-IR, UV-vis-NIR, luminescence, circular dichroism, circular polarized emission, SEM, TEM, AFM, DSC, TGA, dynamic light scattering, polarized optical microscopy (POM), fluorescence confocal polarizing microscopy, electro-optic measurements, and XRD (powder and SAXS-WAXS), etc.