Professor Sukhishvili advances the understanding of the interfacial properties of water-soluble polymers and principles of macromolecular assembly at interfaces, and applies this knowledge to produce surfaces with desired properties, such as control of protein and/or nanoparticle attachment, or designed environmental response of surface films.
Through manipulating properties of multilayers at the nanoscale level during self-assembly, a whole range of new advanced materials can be produced. One example of these materials is polymeric hollow particles which may be used for controlled delivery of drugs or other functional molecules such as pesticides, fertilizers or fragrances.
Dr. Sukhishvili is also exploring surface modification routes for controlled attachment of noble metal nanoparticles and/or biomolecules at surfaces, and in understanding and rational design of SERS activity of nanoparticle-modified substrates useful for SERS-based chemical and biological sensing. This work is interdisciplinary and presents a combination of physico-chemical and synthetic ideas involving water-soluble polymers.
Students with diverse backgrounds -- in chemistry, physics and materials science -- work together and form a stimulating environment in the group. Her work has resulted in two issued patents, as well as becoming a Fellow of the American Physical Society, 2007. She was also honored with a Distinguished Scientific Achievement Award at the 2009 Coatings Technology Conference hosted by National Paint and Coatings Association and the Federation of Societies for Coatings Technology.