The Gracias laboratory develops new methods to fabricate very small devices and integrated structures, and characterize these systems using microscopy and spectroscopy. A major thrust of our research is focused on constructing miniaturized 3D devices which are especially challenging to fabricate at small size scales. We are also particularly interested in understanding, synthesizing and characterizing self-assembling, intelligent and hybrid biotic-abiotic systems.
We utilize a range of experimental techniques including photo-, e-beam and nano-imprint lithography; thin film deposition, molding, etching, culture of prokaryotic (E coli) and eukaryotic (e.g. fibroblasts, islets, myoblasts) cells, biological assays (e.g. fluorescent stains, ELISA, cytology), non-linear optical spectroscopy, electron microscopy (TEM & SEM with fixation), RF measurements such as GHz spectrum analysis, electrochemical methods such as potentiometry and chronoamperometry and four point electrical testing with femto-amp resolution. We also utilize analytical methods as well finite element methods (HFSS, Surface Evolver, COMSOL) to model data. Our lab is multidisciplinary and students in our lab have had backgrounds in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, Biomedical Engineering and Medicine.