Lauren Zarzar, assistant professor of chemistry at Penn State, was selected as the recipient of the 2019 Unilever Award by the Division of Colloid and Surface Chemistry of the American Chemical Society. Zarzar was nominated for the award by scientists across the nation in recognition of her pioneering work in harnessing complex fluids as responsive and active materials and driving emulsions into the forefront of adaptive optics and sensors.
The award recognizes and encourages fundamental work in colloid and surfactant science carried out in North America by researchers in the early stages of their careers. Awardees receive a three thousand dollar prize and are invited to present a talk at the Colloid Symposium in Atlanta, Georgia in June.
“It is really an honor to receive this award,” said Zarzar. “I’m looking forward to presenting my group’s research at the Colloid and Surface Science Symposium this summer, which is a great platform to share our work with the community.”
Dr. Zarzar’s research focuses on active fluids. Her most recent discovery of a previously unrecognized mechanism for generating structural iridescent color was featured on the cover of Nature. Over the past few years, her research group has found ways to control complex fluids and emulsions to harness liquids as materials in new ways. Her research in this area is supported by the National Science Foundation, Army Research Office, and the Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers.