-->

Chemistry graduate student Andrew Brown '15 says he made his decision to come to Texas A&M as an undergraduate when he heard Distinguished Professor of Chemistry Kim Dunbar speak at Westminster College, their fellow alma mater.

COLLEGE STATION --

Texas A&M University chemist Andrew Brown '15 has always been one to chase dreams, but he's never let pursuit of the end goal deter him from appreciating the journey along the way.

This week, Brown is beginning a new chapter and a new job in Chandler, Ariz., developing integrated circuits and semiconductors for Intel® Corp. His official title at Intel is a mouthful -- Substrate and Packaging Technology Development Materials Pathfinding Engineer -- but he remains equally proud of a much shorter designation that he held only recently: Texas A&M University graduate student.

And while he may have left Aggieland behind for the professional workforce, Brown, who earned his Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry in August, will take with him many memories, milestones and accolades from his years of researching molecular nanomagnets in the Texas A&M Department of Chemistry.

"We have such a great chemistry department," Brown said. "It was a great decision to come here, and the Aggie Spirit percolates even to the graduate students."

Watch an interview with Andrew Brown '15 about his research and Texas A&M's role in empowering him for the future, Intel® and beyond:



Brown was introduced to materials science when he joined Distinguished Professor of Chemistry Dr. Kim R. Dunbar's research group in 2009, where he quickly became proficient with single-molecule magnets. He soon began assembling early transition metals into nanomagnetic clusters and analyzing their properties to determine if their magnetic fields could be harnessed to power computer-based devices.

While molecular nanomagnets are 40,000 times smaller than what the human eye can see, they figure big in small ways that scientists expect will help to revolutionize information processing and data storage. For starters, they consume up to 100 times less power than current computer technologies.

"The applications for [nanomagnets] are very technology driven," Brown said. "If you have a magnet that has a north and a south pole, if you can orient it, say up or down, then that can behave like a one or a zero in today's binary computers. And since nanomagnets are on such a small scale, they can also have applications in quantum computing."

Brown says one of his crowning moments as a graduate student came when he built a nanomagnet that successfully functioned at 3 kelvins -- an accomplishment that, earlier in the year, earned him the George W. Kunze Endowed Graduate Student Award.

"It doesn't sound quite impressive, but 3 kelvins is a pretty good temperature for a nanomagnet to operate, given that the record in the field is 14 kelvins," he said. "To make a single-molecule magnet that shows magnetic properties at any temperature is a feat."

In May, Brown's research was recognized with a Texas A&M Dow Symposium Poster Award. In 2014, he presented his work at the Gordon Research Conference on Conductivity & Magnetism in Molecular Materials in Lewiston, Maine, where he received a travel scholarship from the Institute for Complex Adaptive Matter.

"To have your work recognized by the university -- it's a great feeling," Brown said. "It lets you know that what you're doing in the lab, other people are seeing."

Brown attributes his passion for molecular magnets to Dunbar, who he considers his mentor. Brown, who is a native of Hermitage, Pa., says he made the decision to attend graduate school at Texas A&M after hearing Dunbar give a talk on metal ions' role in pharmaceuticals at Westminster College, where he received his undergraduate degree. Dunbar, who also happens to be an alumna of Westminster, convinced Brown to consider Texas A&M's chemistry program.

"My greatest advisor since I've been here in College Station is definitely my graduate advisor, Dr. Kim Dunbar," Brown said. "She's been instrumental in my development as a professional scientist."

Even though Brown is embarking on a new career in a new part of the country, don't count on him to lose perspective -- local or laboratory -- anytime soon.

"I love being at that cutting edge of science where you're making new strides in an attempt to make a new technology," Brown said. "I'm working on things that have a direct influence on other people's lives, and I realize that's the type of work that I want to pursue."

# # # # # # # # # #

About Research at Texas A&M University: As one of the world's leading research institutions, Texas A&M is at the forefront in making significant contributions to the storehouse of knowledge, including that of science and technology. Research conducted at Texas A&M represented annual expenditures of more than $820 million in FY 2013, ranking Texas A&M in the top 20 of the National Science Foundation's most recent survey of research and development expenditures among U.S. colleges and universities. Recently reported FY 2014 research expenditures exceed $854 million. That research creates new knowledge that provides basic, fundamental and applied contributions resulting in many cases in economic benefits to the state, nation and world. To learn more, visit http://research.tamu.edu.

-aTm-

Contact: Chris Jarvis, (979) 845-7246 or cjarvis@science.tamu.edu or Dr. Kim R. Dunbar, (979) 845-5235 or dunbar@chem.tamu.edu

Jarvis Chris

  • Brown was introduced to materials science when he joined Dunbar's research group in 2009, where he quickly became proficient with single-molecule magnets.

  • As he progressed in the graduate program, Brown says he began assembling early transition metals into nanomagnetic clusters and analyzing their properties to determine if their magnetic fields could be harnessed to power computer-based devices.

  • Brown has spent the past couple of years working with molecular nanomagnets -- devices 40,000 times smaller than what the human eye can see with the power to revolutionize information processing and data storage.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
© Texas A&M University. To request use of any of our photographs for educational use or to view additional options from our archive, please contact the College of Science Communications Office.

College of Science
517 Blocker
TAMU 3257 | 979-845-7361
Site Policies
Contact Webmaster
Social Media