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Shekhar Garde

Garde was a Los Alamos National Laboratory Director's Fellow from 1997 to 1999 and received a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2002. He is using the five-year, $374,965 grant to develop computer simulation tools for understanding and modeling how biological molecules self-assemble in water-based solutions.

Professor Garde is an executive producer of the Moleculariumâ„¢ project in which animation movies based on molecular simulations are being developed to help understanding of science by the general public. The pilot show is available for viewing in the Junior Museum of Troy and the first professional show will be released in early 2005. Garde's group is developing Java Molecular Dynamics (JMD), platform independent simulation tools, that will help high-school science teachers explain to the students molecular level concepts, such as diffusion, mixing, or phase changes that are otherwise difficult to imagine at the molecular level. Modules for further applications to polymers and reactions are also being developed. Molecular simulations of model systems were incorporated into an advanced undergraduate and graduate level Statistical Thermodynamics class in the Chemical Engineering Department (at RPI) that received excellent reviews from students. An attempt is being made to develop a new course on molecular modeling with emphasis on modeling of aqueous, interfacial, and biological systems.