Michael Rubinstein

Michael Rubinstein

Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Professor of Biomedical Engineering (Joint)

Professor of Physics (Joint)

Professor of Chemistry (Joint)

Office Location: 
Hudson Hall, Rm. 144, Box 90300, Durham, NC 27708
Front Office Address: 
Box 90300, Durham, NC 27708
(919) 660-5365


The research of the Rubinstein group is in the field of polymer theory and computer simulations. The unique properties of polymeric systems are due to the size, topology and interactions of the molecules they are made of. Our goal is to understand the properties of various polymeric systems and to design new systems with even more interesting and useful properties.

Our approach is based upon building and solving simple molecular models of different polymeric systems. The models we develop are simple enough to be solved either analytically or numerically, but contain the main features leading to unique properties of real polymers. Computer simulations of our models serve as an important bridge between analytical calculations and experiments.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Harvard University 1983

Leuty, Gary M., et al. “Tension Amplification in Tethered Layers of Bottle-Brush Polymers.” Macromolecules, vol. 49, no. 5, American Chemical Society (ACS), Mar. 2016, pp. 1950–60. Crossref, doi:10.1021/acs.macromol.5b02305. Full Text

Daniel, William F. M., et al. “Solvent-free, supersoft and superelastic bottlebrush melts and networks.” Nature Materials, vol. 15, no. 2, Springer Science and Business Media LLC, Feb. 2016, pp. 183–89. Crossref, doi:10.1038/nmat4508. Full Text

Ge, Ting, et al. “Self-Similar Conformations and Dynamics in Entangled Melts and Solutions of Nonconcatenated Ring Polymers.” Macromolecules, vol. 49, no. 2, American Chemical Society (ACS), Jan. 2016, pp. 708–22. Crossref, doi:10.1021/acs.macromol.5b02319. Full Text

Li, Yang, et al. “Universal behavior of hydrogels confined to narrow capillaries.” Scientific Reports, vol. 5, no. 1, Springer Science and Business Media LLC, Dec. 2015. Crossref, doi:10.1038/srep17017. Full Text

Bharti, Bhuvnesh, et al. “Nanocapillarity-mediated magnetic assembly of nanoparticles into ultraflexible filaments and reconfigurable networks.” Nature Materials, vol. 14, no. 11, Springer Science and Business Media LLC, Nov. 2015, pp. 1104–09. Crossref, doi:10.1038/nmat4364. Full Text

Cai, Li-Heng, et al. “Soft Poly(dimethylsiloxane) Elastomers from Architecture-Driven Entanglement Free Design.” Advanced Materials, vol. 27, no. 35, Wiley, Sept. 2015, pp. 5132–40. Crossref, doi:10.1002/adma.201502771. Full Text

Anderson, Wayne H., et al. “The Relationship of Mucus Concentration (Hydration) to Mucus Osmotic Pressure and Transport in Chronic Bronchitis.” American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, vol. 192, no. 2, American Thoracic Society, July 2015, pp. 182–90. Crossref, doi:10.1164/rccm.201412-2230oc. Full Text

Hassouneh, Wafa, et al. “Elastin-like Polypeptide Diblock Copolymers Self-Assemble into Weak Micelles.Macromolecules, vol. 48, no. 12, June 2015, pp. 4183–95. Epmc, doi:10.1021/acs.macromol.5b00431. Full Text

Ge, Ting, and Michael Rubinstein. “Strong Selective Adsorption of Polymers.” Macromolecules, vol. 48, no. 11, American Chemical Society (ACS), June 2015, pp. 3788–801. Crossref, doi:10.1021/acs.macromol.5b00586. Full Text

Hegde, Maruti, et al. “The role of crystallinity in SWCNT–polyetherimide nanocomposites.” Composites Science and Technology, vol. 110, Elsevier BV, Apr. 2015, pp. 176–87. Crossref, doi:10.1016/j.compscitech.2015.02.004. Full Text