M Taher A Saif
- Academic Affairs
- Grad Students
- Graduate Advising
Primary Research Area
- Ph.D. Theo. & Appl. Mech. Cornell University 1993
- M.S. Civil Eng. Washington State University 1987
- B.S. Civil Eng. Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (with Honors) 1984
- Visiting Professor, Faculty of Physics, University of Vienna, May 23 - June 22, 2011
- Gutgsell Professor, University of Illinois, January 2009-date
- Professor, Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, UIUC, Aug. 15, 2005date
- Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, UIUC, Aug. 16, 2003-Aug. 15, 2005
- Willett Faculty Scholar Award, College of Engineering, UIUC, 2003-2009
- Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, UIUC, May 26, 1997-Aug. 15, 2003
- Research Associate, School of Electrical Engineering and National Nano-Fabrication Facility, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Aug. 1996-May 1997
- Post Doctoral Associate, School of Electrical Engineering and National Nano-Fabrication Facility, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Aug. 1993-July 1996
- Teaching Assistant, Department of Physics and Department of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Aug. 1991-May 1993
- Teaching Assistant Fellow, College of Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Aug. 1991-May 1992
- Teaching Assistant, Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Aug. 1990-May 1991
- Research Assistant, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Jan. 1988-Aug. 1990
- Teaching Assistant, Department of Civil Engineering, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, Aug. 1986-Dec. 1987
- Lecturer, Department of Civil Engineering, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Dhaka, Bangladesh, Sept. 1984-Aug. 1986
For more information
- Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, Cornell University Chapter
Professor Saif's research focuses on the mechanics of nanoscale materials and living cells. He uses both theory and experiment to explore (1) the effect of size on the mechanics of materials, and (2) the role of mechanical force in determining the functionality of cells and cell clusters.
Professor Saif demonstrated experimentally, for the first time, that plastic deformation in nanocrystalline metal films can be reversible. After plastic deformation, metals with grain sizes between 50 and 100 nanometers recover most of their plastic strain under macroscopically stress-free condition. This recovery is time dependent and thermally activated. Saif showed that the recovery originates from the small size and heterogeniety of microstructure of the metal specimens. The research, which was reported in Science, raises the possibility of manufacturing metal components that can heal themselves after being deformed or dented.
In the area of cellular mechanics, Professor Saif's projects involve neurons, cancer and cardiac cells, and interactions between cells in clusters. He seeks to address questions such as: What is the role of tension in neurons on memory and learning? Does mechanical microenvironment influence the onset of metastasis during cancer development? Can clusters of cells be guided so that they evolve into biological machines? He, together with Professor Akira Chiba of the the University of Maimi, showed that neurons are under mechanical tension, and that such tension might be essential for memory and learning.
Selected Articles in Journals
- Wonmo Kang and M Taher A Saif, "Size Dependent Yield Strength in Single Crystal Silicon," Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids (in review).
- Wonmo Kang and M Taher A Saif, "In Situ Study of Size and Temperature Dependent Brittle-to-Ductile Transition in Single Crystal Silicon," Advanced Functional Materials (in press).
- Emerson de Souza, W. Ahmed, V. Chan, R. Bashir, T. A. Saif. "Cardiac myocytes' dynamic behavior differs depending on heart segment" Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Sept 5, 2012, doi: 10.1002/bit.24725.
- Tang, X., M. Y. Ali, and M. T. A. Saif, "A Novel Technique for Micro-patterning Proteins and Cells on Polyacrylamide Gels," Soft Matter, 8(27), pp. 7197-7206, 2012.
- Chan, V., J. H. Jeong, P. Bajaj, M. Collens, T. Saif, H. Kong, and R. Bashir, "Multi-Material Bio-Fabrication of Hydrogel Cantilevers and Actuators with Stereolithography," Lab on a Chip, 12(1):88-98, 2012.
- Ahmed, W. W., T. C. Li, S. S. Rubakhin, A. Chiba, J. V. Sweedler, and T. A. Saif, "Mechanical Tension Modulates Local and Global Vesicle Dynamics in Neurons," Journal of Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering, Vol 5(2), pp 155-164, 2012 (invited article).
- Rajagopalan, J. and M. Taher A. Saif, "Influence of Microstructural Heterogeneity on the Deformation Behavior of Nanocrystalline Metals," Journal of Materials Research, 26, 2826-2832 2011.
- Kang, W. and M. T. A. Saif, "A Novel SiC MEMS Apparatus for In Situ Uniaxial Testing of Micro/Nanomaterials at High Temperature," Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, 21 105017, 2011.
- Kang, W. and M. T. A. Saif, "In Situ Thermo-Mechanical Testing for Micro/Nanomaterials," MRS Communications, 1(1), 13-16, 2011, (IOP Select Paper).
- Nishitani, W., T. Saif, and Y. Wang, "Calcium Signaling in Live Cells on Elastic Gels under Mechanical Vibration at Subcellular Levels," PLoS ONE 6(10): e26181, 2011.
- Cha, C., J. H. Jeong, X. Tang, A. T. Zill, Y. S. Prakash, S. C. Zimmerman, T. A. Saif, and H. Kong, "Top-down Synthesis of Versatile Polyaspartamide Linkers for Single-step Protein Conjugation to Materials," Bioconjugate Chemistry, 22 (12), pp 23772382, 2011.
- Rajagopalan, J. and M. T. A. Saif, "MEMS Sensors and Microsystems for Cell Mechanobiology,"Invited article in the Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, 2011, 21 054002 doi, special focus issue on MEMS for Biology and Medicine.
- Tang, X., P. Bajaj, R. Bashir, and M. T. A. Saif, "How Far Cardiac Cells Can See Each Other Mechanically," Soft Matter (Cover article), 7, 6151-6158, 2011.
- Kang, W., J. Rajagopalan, and M. T. A. Saif, "In Situ Uniaxial Mechanical Testing of Small Scale Materials - a Review," Journal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Letter, 2(4), 282-287, 2010 (invited article).
- Bajaj, P., X. Tang, M. T. A. Saif, and R. Bashir, "Stiffness of the Substrate Influences the Phenotype of Embryonic Chicken Cardiac Myocytes," Journal of Biomedical Materials Research: Part A, Volume 95A, Issue 4, pages 1261-1269, 15 December 2010.
- Rajagopalan, J., A. Tofangchi, and M. T. A. Saif, "Linear, High Resolution BioMEMS Force Sensors with Large Measurement Range," Journal of MicroElectroMechanicalSystems, Vol 19(6), pp1380-1389, Nov 2010.
- Kang, W., J. H. Han, and M T.A. Saif, "A Novel Method for In Situ Uniaxial Tests at Micro/Nano ScalePart II: Experiment," Journal of MicroElectroMechanicalSystems, Vol 19(6), pp1322-1330, Nov 2010.
- Kang, W. and M.T.A. Saif, "A Novel Method for In Situ Uniaxial Tests at Micro/Nano ScalePart I: Theory," Journal of MicroElectroMechanicalSystems, Vol 19(6), pp1309-1321, Nov 2010.
- Rajagopalan, J., A. Tofangchi, and M. T. A. Saif, "Drosophila Neurons Actively Regulate Tension in their Axons in Vivo," Biophysical Journal, 99(10) pp. 3208 3215, 17 November 2010.
- Tang, X., T. B. Kuhlenschmidt, M. S. Kuhlenschmidt, and M. T. A. Saif, "Mechanical Force Affects Expression of an In vitro Metastasis-like Phenotype in HCT-8 cells," Biophysical Journal, Volume 99, Issue 8, 2460-2469, 20 October 2010. (Cover article)
- Rajagopalana, J., C. Rentenbergerb, H. P. Karnthalerb, G. Dehmc, and M. T. A. Saif, "In situ TEM Study of Microplasticity and Bauschinger Effect in Nanocrystalline Metals," Acta Materialia, Volume 58, Issue 14, Pages 4772-4782, August 2010.
- Eberl, C. and T. Saif, "In Situ Mechanical Testing of Biological and Inorganic Materials at the Micro- and Nanoscales," MRS Bulletin, Volume 35, No. 5, May 2010.
- Ahmed, W. W., M. H. Kural, and T. Saif, "A Novel Platform for in situ Investigation of Cells and Tissues under Mechanical Strain," Acta Biomaterialia, 6(8):2979-90, August 2010. Epub 2010 Feb 25.
- Ahmed, W., T. Wolfram, A. Goldyn, K. Bruellhoff, B. Aragues Rioja, M. Moller, J.P. Spatz, M. T. A. Saif, J. Groll, and R. Kemkemer, "Myoblast Morphology and Organization on Biochemically Micro-patterned Hydrogel Coatings under Cyclic Mechanical Strain," Biomaterials 31: 250-8, 2010.
- Siechen, S., S. Yang, A. Chiba, and T. Saif, "Mechanical Tension Contributes to Clustering of Neurotransmitter Vesicles at Presynaptic Terminals," Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 106:31, 12611-12616, August 4, 2009.
- Rajagopalan, J., J. H. Han, and M. T. A. Saif, Bauschinger Effect in Unpassivated Freestanding Nanoscale Metal Films, Scripta Materialia, 59, 734-737, 2008.
- Rajagopalan, J., J. H. Han, and M. T. A. Saif, On Plastic Strain Recovery in Freestanding Nanocrystalline Metal Thin Films, Scripta Materialia, 59, 921-926, 2008. Invited Article.
- Yang, S., and M. T. A. Saif, Microfabricated Force Sensors and Their Applications in the Study of Cell Mechanical Response, Experimental Mechanics, 49:1, 135-151, 2008. Invited Article.
- Rajagopalan, J., J. H. Han, and M. T. A. Saif, Bauschinger Effect in Unpassivated Freestanding Nanoscale Metal Films, Scripta Materialia, 59:7, 734-737, 2008.
- Yang, Shengyuan, and M. T. A. Saif, Force Response and Action Remodeling (Agglomeration) in Fibroblasts Due to Lateral Indentation, Acta Biomaterialia, 3:1, 77-78, 2007.
- Yang, S. and M. T. A. Saif, MEMS Based Force Sensors for the Study of Indentation Response of Single Living Cells, Sensors and Actuators A: Physical, 135:1, 16-22, 2007.
- Rajagopalan, J. and M. T. A. Saif, A Single Degree of Freedom Model for Thermoelastic Damping, Journal of Applied Mechanics (ASME Transactions), 74:3, 461-468, May 2007.
- Rajagopalan, J. and M. T. A. Saif, Single Degree of Freedom Model for Thermoelasticity, Journal of Applied Mechanics-Transactions of the ASME, 74:3, 461-468, May 2007.
- ! Rajagopalan, J., J. Han, and M. T. A. Saif, Plastic Deformation Recovery in Freestanding Nanocrystalline Aluminum and Gold Thin Films, Science, 315, 1831-1834, March 2007.
- Mani, S. and T. Saif, Stress Development in PECVD Silicon Dioxide Thin-Films Due to Hydrogen Evolution, This Solid Films, 515:5, 3120-3125, 2007.
- Han, J. H., and M. T. A. Saif, In-situ Microtensile Stage for Electromechanical Characterization of Nanoscale Freestanding Films, Review of Scientific Instruments, 77:4, 45102-1-8, April 2006.
- Mani, Sathya, Taher Saif, and Jong H. Han, Effect of Annealing on the Conductivity of Electroless Deposited Ni Nanowires and Films, IEEE Transactions on Nanotechnology, 5:2, 138-141, March 2006.
- Meinhart, M., N. R. Miller, and M. T. A. Saif, Dry Stiction of Micro Structures Theory and Experiment, Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series A, 462, 567-585, 2006.
- Mani, S., M. T. A. Saif, and J. Han, Effect of Annealing on the Conductivity of Ni Nanowires and Films, IEEE Transactions on Nanotechnology, 5:2, 138-141, 2006.
- Mani, S. and T. M. A. Saif, Mechanism of Controlled Crack Formation in Thin-Film Dielectrics, Applied Physics Letters, 86, 201903, 2005 (available online).
- Hattar, K., J. Han, M. T. A. Saif, and I. M. Robertson, In-situ TEM Observation of Toughening Mechanism in Ultra-Fine Grained Columnar Aluminum Thin Films, Journal of Materials Research (In-situ Focus Issue), 20:7, 1869-1877, 2005.
- Yang, S. and T. Saif, Micromachined Force Sensors for the Study of Cell Mechanics, Review of Scientific Instruments, 76, 044301, 2005. Also selected for publication in the April 1, 2005 issue of Virtual Journal of Biological Physics Research.
- Yang, S. and T. Saif, Reversible and Repeatable Linear Local Cell Force Response Under Large Stretches, Experimental Cell Research, 305, 42-50, 2005.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, In-situ Tensile Testing of Nanoscale Freestanding Thin Films Inside a Transmission Electron Microscope, Journal of Materials Research (In-situ Focus Issue), 20:7, 1769-1777, July 2005.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Thermo-Mechanical Properties of Nano-Scale Freestanding Aluminum Films, Thin Solid Films, 484, 364-368, 2005.
- Bauer, J. M., T. A. Saif, and D. J. Beebe, Liquid Phase Construction of Microstructures, Journal of MEMS, 13:4, 553-558, August 2004.
- Haque, A. and T. Saif, Micro Instrumentation for Studying Mechanical Properties of Free Standing Films,JOM, 56:11, 308, November 2004.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Deformation Mechanisms in Free-standing Nano-scale Thin Films: A Quantitative In-situ Transmission Electron Microscopy Study, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 101:17, 6335-6340, April 2004.
- Bauer, J. M., T. A. Saif, and D. J. Beebe, Surface Tension Driven Formation of Microstructures, Journal MEMS, 13:4, 553-558, August 2004.
- Saif, T., Scaling the Depth, Mechanical Engineering, 126:4, 2004 (invited article).
- Alaca, B. E., H. Sehitoglu, and T. Saif, Guided Self-Assembly of Metallic Nanowires and Channels, Applied Physics Letters, 84:23, 4669-4671, June 2004.
- Sulfridge, M., T. Saif, N. Miller, and M. Meinhart, Nonlinear Dynamic Study of a Bistable MEMS: Model and Experiment, J. MEMS, 13:5, 725-731, October 2004.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Strain Gradient Effect in Nanoscale Thin Films, Acta Materialia, 51, 3053-3061, 2003.
- Saif, M. T. A., C. R. Sager, and S. Coyer, Functionalized Biomicroelectromechanical Systems Sensor for Force Response Study at Local Adhesion Sites of Single Living Cells on a Substrate, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 31:8, 950-961, 2003.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, A Review of MEMS-Based Microscale and Nanoscale Tensile and Bending Testing, Special Issue of Experimental Mechanics, 43:3, 248-255, September 2003.
- Saif, T. and A. Haque, Mechanical Behavior of Nano Scale Thin Films Using MEMS Sensors, International Journal of Computational Engineering Sciences, 4:2, 169-173, June 2003.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Mechanical Behavior of 30-50 nm Thick Aluminum Films Under Uniaxial Tension, Scripta Materialia, 47, 863-867, 2002.
- Alaca, B. E., J. C. Selby, M. T. A. Saif, and H. Sehitoglu, Biaxial Testing of Nanoscale Films on Compliant Substrates: Fatigue and Fracture, Reviews of Scientific Instruments, 73, 2963-70, 2002.
- Saif, T. A., On the Capillary Interaction Between Solid Plates Forming Menisci on the Surface of a Liquid, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 473, 321-347, 2002.
- Saif, M. T. A., S. Zhang, M. A. Haque, and K. J. Hsia, Effect of Native Oxide on the Elastic Response of Nanoscale AL Films, Acta Materialia, 50:11, 2779-2786, 2002.
- Sulfridge, M., T. Saif, N. Miller, and K. OHara, Optical Actuation of a Bistable MEMS, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 11:5, 574-583, October 2002.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Application of MEMS Force Sensors for In-Situ Mechanical Characterization of Nano-Scale Thin Films in SEM and TEM, Sensors and Actuators A, 97-98, 239-245, 2002.
- Xue, Z., M. T. A. Saif, and Y. Huang, The Strain Gradient Effect in Micro-Electromechanical-Systems (MEMS), Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 11:1, 27-35, 2002.
- Alaca B. E., M. T. A. Saif, and H. Sehitoglu, On the Interface Debond at the Edge of a Thin Film on a Thick Substrate, Acta Materialia, 50, 1197-1209, 2002.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, In-situ Tensile Testing of Nano-scale Specimens in SEM and TEM, Journal of The Society for Experimental Mechanics, 42:1, 123-128, 2002.
- Haque, M. A. and M. T. A. Saif, Microscale Materials Testing Using MEMS Actuators, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 10:1, 146-152, 2001.
- Saif, M. T. A., On a Tunable Bistable MEMS-Theory and Experiment, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 9:2, 157-170, June 2000.
- Saif, M. T. A., B. E. Alaca, and H. Sehitoglu, Analytical Modeling of Electrostatic Membrane Actuator for Micro Pumps, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 8:3, 335-345, September 1999.
- Saif, M. T. A. and N. C. MacDonald, Microinstruments for Submicron Material Studies, Journal of Materials Research, 13:12, 3353-3356, December 1998.
- Saif, M. T. A. and N. C. MacDonald, Measurement of Forces and Spring Constants of Microinstruments, Review of Scientific Instruments, 69:3, 1410-1422, March 1998.
- MacDonald, N. C., S. G. Adams, A. A. Ayon, K. F. Bohringer, L.-Y. Chen, J. H. Das, D. Haronian, W. Hofmann, X. T. Huang, A. Jazairy, R. E. Mihailovich, S. A. Miller, I. Ogo, R. Prasad, B. W. Reed, M. T. A. Saif, K. A. Shaw, R. Y. Webb, and Y. Xu, Micromachined Microdevices and Microinstruments, Microelectronic Engineering, 30, 563-564, 1996.
- Saif, M. T. A. and N. C. MacDonald, Planarity of Large MEMS, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 5:2, 79-97, June 1996.
- Saif, M. T. A. and N. C. MacDonald, A Millinewton Microloading Device, Sensors and Actuators A, 52, 65-75, May 1996.
- Saif, M. Taher A. and C.-Y. Hui, Plane Strain Asymptotic Fields of a Crack Growing along an Elastic-Elastic Power-law Creeping Bi-Material Interface, Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 42:2, 181-214, February 1994.
- Hui, C.-Y. and M. T. A. Saif, Asymptotic Stress Field of a Mode III Crack Growing Along an Elastic/Elastic Power-Law Creeping Bimaterial Interface, Journal of Applied Mechanics, 61, 384-389, June 1994.
- Saif, M. T. A., C. Y. Hui, and A. T. Zehnder, Interface Shear Stresses Induced by Non-uniform Heating of a Film on a Substrate, Thin Solid Films, 224:2, 159-167, March 1993.
- Saif, M. T. A. and C-Y. Hui, Near Tip Fields for a Stationary Mode III Crack Between a Linear Elastic and an Elastic Power Law Hardening Material, International Journal of Fracture, 64:1, 1-26, November 1993.
- Glaucio, P. H., M. T. A. Saif, and S. Mukherjee, A Finite Elastic Body with a Curved Crack Loaded in Anti-Plane Shear, International Journal of Solids and Structures, 30:8, 1015-1037, 1993.
- Grigoriu, M., M. T. A. Saif, S. El Borgi, and A. R. Ingraffea, Mixed Mode Fracture Initiation and Trajectory Prediction Under Random Stresses, International Journal of Fracture, 45, 19-34, September 1990.
- Grigoriu, M. and M. T. A. Saif, Fatigue Analysis of Cracked Anisotropic Plates Subject to Stochastic Loads, Computers and Structures, 37:2, 169-173, 1990.
- A Micro Loading Machine, Cornell University, Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, Ithica, NY, February 8, 1995.
- Member, Society for Neuroscience.
- Member, Biomedical Engineering Society
- Member, Biophysical Society
- Member, Materials Research Society
- Member, Technical Committee, 2007 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Megatronics, ETH Z Switzerland, September 4-7, 2007
- Chair, Electronic Materials Committee of the ASME Materials Division, 2003-05
- Vice Chair, Electronic Materials Committee of the ASME Materials Division, 2001-03
- Member, Materials Research Society
- Member, Technical Committee, MEMS Subdivision, International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Nov. 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004
- Fellow, American Society of Mechanical Engineers
- College of Engineering Outstanding Advisors list, 2009
- MechSE Alumni Effective Teaching Award, 2006
- Listed in the Daily Illini Incomplete List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students for Spring 2003, Spring 2004, Fall 2006
- GE Scholar, UIUC, 1998
- Ralph Bolgiano, Sr. Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award, Cornell University, UIUC, 1991
- Visiting Professor, Faculty of Physics, University of Vienna, May 23 - June 22, 2011
- Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 2011
- Member of UIUC panel evaluating the academic engineering program of Jubail Industrial & University Colleges of the Royal Commission, Jubail, Saudi Arabia, 2011
- Member, Scientific Advisory Board, Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) Center, Infectious Disease Inter-disciplinary Research Group, 2010-date
- Gutgsell Professor, UIUC, 2010-date
- Associate, Center for Advanced Study, UIUC, 2004-2005
- NSF Invited Member, U.S.-Japan Young Researchers Exchange Program for Nanotechnology, Sponsored by U.S. National Science Foundation and Japan Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Sept. 25-Oct. 2, 2003 in U.S., and Nov. 5-13, 2003 in Japan.
- Willett Faculty Scholar Award, College of Engineering, UIUC, 2003-2000, 2003-2009
- Xerox Award for Faculty Research, College of Engineering, UIUC, 2003, 2006
- Whos Who in Engineering Education, 2002
- Strathmores Whos Who, 2002-2005
- GE Scholar, 1998
- NSF Faculty Early Development (CAREER) Award, 1998