Katayun Barmak

PHILIPS ELECTRONICS PROFESSOR OF APPLIED PHYSICS AND APPLIED MATHEMATICS AND OF MATERIALS SCIENCE ENGINEERING

1137 S.W. Mudd

Tel(212) 854-8267

Katayun Barmak probes the nature of materials in order to understand their properties and how to engineer them. Such work aids the development of new and improved materials for engineering systems.

Research Interests

Synthesis and characterization of transition metal dichalcogenides; rare-earth free permanent magnet materials; synthesis, processing, properties, crystal structure, grain structure, and texture of metallic films for electronic and magnetic applications; , thermodynamics and kinetics of solid state reactions and phase transformations in nanostructured films. Grain boundaries, grain growth and microstructural evolution., Materials characterization. Characterization techniques of interest include differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), X-ray and electron diffraction (XRD, ED), and electron microscopy (SEM, TEM, STEM) and crystal orientation mapping.

Research Areas

She investigates the differences in materials structure at macro-, micro-, and nano-scales and uncovers the impact these differences have on a material’s properties and ultimately the performance of engineered systems they are made for. In her work in Columbia Nano Initiative’s new Electron Microscopy lab, she studies matter at magnifications not possible with optical microscopes. Her areas of particular interest are materials synthesis, structure and phase transformations.

Barmak obtained her BA (First Class Hons.) in materials science in 1983 and a MA in natural sciences, metallurgy, and materials science in 1987 from the University of Cambridge in England. She earned a SM in metallurgy in 1985 and a PhD in materials science in 1989 from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She joined Columbia Engineering in 2011 as the Philips Electronics Professor of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics and Materials Science Engineering and became Director of the Materials Science and Engineering Program in 2013. Previously, she was a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University from 1999-2011 and served on the faculty at Lehigh University from 1992-1998, where she also co-directed the Thin Film Laboratory. Prior to her appointment at Lehigh, Barmak spent three years at IBM T.J. Watson Research Center and IBM East Fishkill development laboratory and was a visiting scientist at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center from 1998-2004. 

Research Experience

  • IBM Materials Research Community Visiting Scientist, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center, 2004
  • Visiting Scientist, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, 1998–2003
  • Institute of Materials, GKSS Research Center, Geesthacht, Germany, 1994

Professional Experience

  • Director, Materials Science and Engineering Program, Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University, 2013 –
  • Philips Electronics Professor of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics and Materials Science and Engineering, Columbia University, 2011 –
  • Full Professor with indefinite tenure, Carnegie Mellon University, 2002–2011  
  • Associate Professor with indefinite tenure, Carnegie Mellon University, 1999–2002
  • Associate Professor with indefinite tenure, Lehigh University, 1997–1998
  • Co-director, Thin Film Laboratory, Materials Research Center, Lehigh, 1995–1998  
  • Assistant Professor, Lehigh University, 1992–1997  
  • Staff Engineer, Advanced Device Development, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center and IBM East Fishkill, New York, 1989–1992

Professional Affilliations

  • IEEE
  • Materials Research Society (MRS)
  • American Physical Society (APS)
  • The Minerals, Metals, Materials Society (TMS)
  • ASM International (ASM)
  • Microscopy Society of America (MSA)
  • Microbeam Analysis Society (MAS)
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
  • New York Academy of Science (NYAS)
  • American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE)
  • Sigma Xi

Honors & Awards

  • Edward and Carole Kim Faculty Involvement Award, School of Engineering and Applied Sciene, Columbia University, 2017
  • Philbrook Prize in Engineering, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, 2009
  • NSF Creativity Award, 2001
  • Meeting Chair, Materials Research Society, Spring 1999
  • IBM Faculty Fellowship Award, 1999
  • Materials Research Society Council, elected member, 1998-2000  
  • Alfred Noble Robinson Award, Lehigh University, 1995
  • National Young Investigator (NYI) Award, National Science Foundation, 1994
  • Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft Fellowship, Institute of Materials, GKSS Research Center, Geesthacht, Germany, 1994
  • Harold Chambers Junior Faculty Chair of Materials Science and Engineering, Lehigh University, 1992–1993
  • AT&T Foundation Fellowship, 1986–1989
  • Elected to Sigma Xi, Science Honor Society, 1985
  • New Hall Prize for academic excellence, University of Cambridge, 1983
  • Posener Academic Scholarship, New Hall, University of Cambridge, 1981–1983

Selected Publications

  • K. Barmak, X. Liu, A. Darbal, D. Choi, N. T. Nuhfer, T. Sun, A. P. Warren, K. R. Coffey, M. F. Toney, “On increased twin density and resistivity of Ta38Si14N48-encapsulated nanometric Cu films”, J. Appl. Phys. 120, 065106 (2016). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4960701
  • J. Liu, K. Barmak, “Topologically close-packed phases: Deposition and formation mechanism of metastable β-W in thin films”, Acta Mater. 103, 223-227 (2016). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actamat.2015.11.049
  • L. H. Lewis, A. Mubarok, E. Poirier, N. Bordeaux, P. Manchanda, A. Kashyap, R. Skomski, J. Goldstein, F. E. Pinkerton, R. K. Mishra, R. C. Kubic Jr, and K. Barmak,  “Inspired by nature: investigating tetrataenite for permanent magnet applications”, J. Phys.: Condens. Matter 26, 064213 (2014). DOI:10.1088/0953-8984/26/6/064213
  • D. Choi, M. Moneck, X. Liu, S.-J. Oh, C. R. Kagan, K. R. Coffey and K. Barmak, “Crystallographic anisotropy of the resistivity size effect in single crystal tungsten nanowires”, Scientific Reports 3, 2591:1-4 (2013). DOI: 10.1038/srep02591
  • (Review Article) K. Barmak, E. Eggeling, D. Kinderlehrer, R. Sharp, S. Ta’asan, A. D. Rollett, K. R. Coffey “Grain Growth and the Puzzle of its Stagnation in Thin Films: The Curious Tale of a Tail and an Ear”, Progress in Mater. Sci. 58, 987-1055 (2013). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pmatsci.2013.03.004

“With all materials, how they function has something to do with their structure.”

Katayun Barmak
PHILIPS ELECTRONICS PROFESSOR OF APPLIED PHYSICS AND APPLIED MATHEMATICS AND OF MATERIALS SCIENCE ENGINEERING