Faculty - Tricia Breen Carmichael

Tricia Breen Carmichael

Tricia Breen Carmichael

Surface and Materials Chemistry
Ph.D. (University of Windsor)
253-3000 Ext. 3538
373-6 Essex Hall


Advanced materials posterThe Carmichael group works in the area of materials science. Current projects focus on two main topics

Research on low-cost plastic electronic devices uses surface engineering and soft lithography to develop new ways to fabricate these devices. Research on new self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) uses chemical synthesis and surface spectroscopy to develop SAMs with well-defined surface properties.

Plastic Electronics Lightweight devices with mechanical flexibility are needed for applications in consumer electronics (flexible displays and signage, wearable displays) and in medicine (sensors designed to be implanted in the body; artificial nerves, skin, and muscles). Using plastic substrates as a platform for device fabrication allows bending; elastomeric substrates allow bending as well as stretching. Our research develops new fabrication methods targeted toward these substrates to yield robust devices that withstand mechanical deformation. These fabrication methods also make use of low-cost patterning and materials deposition steps to yield processes that are economically advantageous.

New Self-Assembled Monolayers on Coinage Metals
Self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of alkanethiols on the surfaces of coinage metals exhibit dense packing of the cylindrically-shaped alkanethiol molecules on the surface. Applications of these well-studied SAMs arise from this dense molecular packing. For example, these SAMs can be used as resists to wet etching. Self-assembled monolayers formed from molecules with shapes different from simple cylinders can lead to new properties that are distinct from those of alkanethiol SAMs. We have established a new class of SAMs formed from dialkyldithiophosphinic acid molecules, which possess two alkyl groups and a chelating head group. Proper choice of alkyl groups allows for nanoscale structural control of the SAM, the formation of mixed SAMs, and ultimately, the fabrication of stimuli-responsive surfaces.


  • M. S. Miller, G. J. E. Davidson, B. J. Sahli, C. M. Mailloux, T. B. Carmichael (2008) Fabrication of Elastomeric Wires by Selective Electroless Metallization of Poly(dimethylsiloxane) Adv. Mater. 20, 59-64.
  • K. E. Paul, T. L. Breen, T. Hadzik, G. M. Whitesides (2005) Imaging Patterns of Intensity in Topographically Directed Photolithography J. Vac. Sci. Technol. B 23, 918-925.
  • T. B. Carmichael, S. J. Vella, A. Afzali (2004) Selective Electroless Metal Deposition Using Microcontact Printing of Phosphine-Phosphonic Acid Inks Langmuir 20, 5593-5598.
  • A. Afzali, C. D. Dimitrakopoulos, T. L. Breen (2002) High-Performance, Solution-Processed Organic Thin Film Transistors from a Novel Pentacene Precursor J. Am. Chem. Soc. 124, 8812-8813.
  • C. R. Kagan, T. L. Breen and L. L. Kosbar (2001) Patterning Organic-Inorganic Thin-Film Transistors Using Microcontact Printed Templates Appl. Phys. Lett. 79, 3536-3538.


  • 2006 - Early Researcher Award - Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation
  • 2005 – NSERC University Faculty Award

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