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Part 2 of Missouri State University Science Series

This week, KSMU is profiling Missouri State University science professors and their research as part of a series on innovative scientific research in the local community. The second professor in the series is actually a duo, Dr. Pawan Kahol and his research partner Dr. Kartik Ghosh. Together they are doing research to learn more about nanotechnology and the many ways it can be used. KSMU's Jana Greer has more

On this particular day, Dr. Pawan Kahol is dressed in a shirt and tie looking out from gold rimmed glasses. His office shelves are lined with books and the face of Albert Einstein appears in posters all over the walls. Even an Einstein action figure is propped up in the corner of his office. Kahol is the Head of the Physics, Astronomy and Material Science Department at Missouri State. He explains what first drew him to physics.

Kahol has been a professor at Missouri State for 3 years. He and his colleague Dr. Kartik Ghosh are doing research to learn more about nanotechnology by way of nanomaterials.

Materials that are nano size are about a thousand times thinner than a strand of hair. Kahol explains how they make materials that small.

Kahol and Ghosh say there are endless possibilities with nanotechnology. One possibility they're working on is creating super computers that would work thousands of times faster that the ones we use today. They're doing this by using the spin of electrons. Today's electronics use the positive and negative charges in an atom. But the electrons in the atom are also spinning. And it's that spin motion combined with the charge which Kahol says will make electronics even better.

Another project they're working on is using nanotechnology to cure diseases. They're collaborating with the Biomedical Science Department to use nanomaterials to send medicine directly to cancer cells. Where as treatments like chemotherapy attack all of the cells in the body, Dr. Kartik Ghosh says this procedure would only attack the cancer cells.

Kahol and Ghosh say most advancements in nanotechnology have taken place in the past few years and it won't be long before it's a part of everyday life.