Dr. Ali Dhinojwala

Dr. Ali Dhinojwala

Title: Interim Director of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering; H.A. Morton Professor
Dept/Program: School of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering
Phone: 330-972-6246
Fax: 330-972-5290
Email: ali4@uakron.edu
Website: http://blogs.uakron.edu/dhinojwala/


Dr. Ali Dhinojwala, H.A. Morton Professor of Polymer Science, has been a part of the School of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering (SPSPE) for over twenty years, first serving as a professor and then as the Department Chair from 2008-2012. He has served as the co-Principal Investigator of the Biomimicry Research Innovation Center (BRIC) since its inception in 2011, and during his time at the University has helped to hire several faculty members who teach here still today. His participation in the School as well as his dedication to building a successful team of faculty and staff made him a perfect fit as director.

Dr. Dhinojwala obtained a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University and spent two years as a research scientist at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. After spending one year at GE Plastics, he joined The University of Akron in 1997.

His current research is in the areas of adhesion, friction, and wetting. His group has developed unique surface technique to study buried polymer interfaces. His recent interest is in understanding how geckos and spiders use adhesives for locomotion and prey capture. These studies have led his team to develop synthetic adhesives using aligned carbon nanotubes. His latest passion is on developing structural colors, a strategy inspired by bird colors.

Research Interests

Spectroscopic techniques to study structure and dynamics at surfaces and interfaces; relationship between adhesion, adhesion hysterisis, and friction; structure and dynamics of molecules in confined geometry; surface melting and surface freezing; developing synthetic adhesives using aligned carbon nanotubes inspired by Gecko foothairs; electrical and optical applications of aligned carbon nanotubes.


  • Ocko, B.; Dhinojwala, A.; Dalliant, J. "Comment on How Water Meets an Hydrophobic Surface" Phys. Rev. Lett. 2008, 101, 039601.
  • Niewiarowski, P.; Lopez, S.; Ge, L.; Hagan, E.; Dhinojwala, A. "Sticky Gecko Feet-The Role of Temperature and Humidity" 2008, PLoS One, 3, e2192.
  • Prasad, S.; Jiang, Z.; Sinha, S.; Dhinojwala, A. "Partial Crystallinity in Alkyl Side Chain Polymers Dictates Surface Freezing" accepted for publication in Phys. Rev. Lett.
  • Sethi, S.; Ge, L.; Ci, L. Ajayan, P. M. ; Dhinojwala, A. "Gecko-Inspired Carbon Nanotube-Based Self-Cleaning Adhesives" Nano letters 2008, 8, 822-825.
  • Li, G; Prasad, S.; Dhinojwala, A. "Dynamic Interfacial Tension at the Oil/Surfactant-water Interface" Langmuir, 2007, 23, 9929-9932.
  • Ge, L.; Sethi, S.; Ci, L.; Ajayan, P.M.; Dhinojwala, A. "Carbon Nanotube-Based Synthetic Gecko Tapes" Proc Natl Acad Sci2007, 104, 10792-10795.
  • Yurdumakan, B.; Nanjundiah, K.; Harp, G. P.; Dhinojwala, A. "Origin of Higher Friction for Elastomers Sliding on Glassy Polymers" J. Phys. Chem. C 2007, 111, 960-965.
  • Harp, G.P.; Rangwalla, H.; Yeganeh, M. S.; Dhinojwala, A. "Coupling of Interfacial Motion at Polystyrene-Alkane Interface" Macromolecules 2006, 39, 7464-7466.
  • Prasad, S, Hanne, L.; Dhinojwala, A. "Surface Segregation Induced by Surface Freezing" Macromolecules 2006, 39, 7467-7470.


  • 1994 Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Northwestern University
  • 1986 B.Tech., Chemical Eng., Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India