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Dissertation Defenses

Doctoral students who have an upcoming dissertation oral defense are posted here. So why not take this opportunity to learn about the research that our graduate students are doing!

Dissertation Defense for Brian Zukas


Department Contact Email: jennie.allen@unh.edu

Defense Title: Synthesis of Metal Oxide Nanoparticles and Mesocrystals in an Interphase Droplet Flow Reactor

Defense Date and Time: 04/04/18 12:30 pm

Defense Location: Kingsbury W308

Defense Advisor: Dr. Nivedita Gupta

Defense Abstract: The attractive properties of nanoparticles and nanostructures has driven their integration into a wide range of modern technologies. Synthesis of nanoparticles in droplet flow reactors offers a solution to the shortcomings of batch reactors. The interphase droplet reactor presented in this work maintains the advantages of a droplet flow reactor while accomplishing reagent addition through mass transfer from the continuous phase to the droplet phase. In this work, sodium hydroxide in a continuous phase of 1-octanol diffuses into aqueous droplets containing a metal salt, initiating nanoparticle synthesis. An acid-base titration confirmed that increasing the total flow rate increased the rate of mass transfer. Addition of Triton X-100 surfactant increased the rate of mass transfer while sodium dodecyl sulfate did not. Zinc oxide nanoparticles with controllable sizes between 41 to 62 nm were produced by changing reaction temperature, reagent concentration, droplet volume, and adding surfactants. Operating the interphase droplet reactor at 25˚C produced large ZnO sheets and increasing the reaction temperature to 40˚C and above produced spherical nanoparticles. Higher inlet sodium hydroxide concentrations transitioned the particle morphology from spherical particles to plates. Decreasing the reactor diameter decreased the mean particle size from 54 nm to 43 nm. The interphase droplet reactor also produced a narrower particle size distribution than a single phase aqueous batch reactor. Low reagent concentrations produced ellipsoidal zinc oxide mesocrystals through oriented attachment. A reaction temperature of 40˚C was adequate for mesocrystal production. The presence of Triton X-100 did not prevent oriented attachment while the addition of sodium dodecyl sulfate did. The ability of the interphase droplet reactor to synthesize other metal oxides was demonstrated by the synthesis of copper (II) oxide. Copper oxide sheet mesocrystals were formed in the absence of acetic acid. The presence of acetic acid in the droplet phase inhibited oriented attachment and produced copper oxide nanowires.


Dissertation Defense for Justine Oliva


Department Contact Email: lara.demarest@unh.edu

Defense Title: The Circle of Anne C. Lynch Botta: Friendship and Power in the Nineteenth Century

Defense Date and Time: 04/16/18 5:30 pm

Defense Location: Horton 445

Defense Advisor: Professor Jessica Lepler

Defense Abstract: This dissertation examines the life of the author and salonnière Anne Charlotte Lynch Botta (1815-1891) and argues that social circles functioned as scaffolding to nineteenth-century power structures. Historians too frequently treat friendship as trivial in comparison to business and politics but Botta’s impressive professional rise shows that economic and political exchange cannot be divorced from social interaction. In the nineteenth century, both American men and women advanced and obscured their public ambitions through social context. The illusory divide between public and private life was particularly relevant for women, however. Limited by her sex in a myriad of ways, Botta was nonetheless able to obtain a considerable degree of social influence and transform it into more economic and political capital than that held by the great majority of American men. “The Circles of Anne C. Lynch Botta” therefore reveals that nineteenth-century women had a greater part in directing change than has typically been acknowledged. Indeed, the foundation of modern America was partially rooted in, and dependent upon, female-directed social circles.


Dissertation Defense for Jaya Dofe


Department Contact Email: kathy.reynolds@unh.edu

Defense Title: Novel Hardware Defense Mechanisms for 2D and 3D Integrated Circuits to Thwart Security Attacks

Defense Date and Time: 04/24/18 9:30 am

Defense Location: Kingsbury Hall W208

Defense Advisor: Dr. Qiaoyan Yu

Defense Abstract: Due to the trend of globalized semiconductor supply chain, integrated circuits (ICs) are vulnerable to security threats, such as reverse engineering, intellectual property (IP) piracy, hardware Trojan insertions, and side-channel analysis attacks. As hardware is the root of trust, it is significantly important to ensure hardware integrity and security along the supply chain against the existing and emerging hardware attacks. This dissertation is composed of three major contributions, which address the invasive and non-invasive hardware attacks in two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) ICs.

A dynamic state-deflection based obfuscation method is proposed for gate-level 2D IC implementation. This approach protects every state in the normal operational mode to thwart IP piracy and reverse engineering attacks. The novel state rotation and selective register flipping functions are proposed to dynamically control state transitions. Without the correct obfuscation key, the proposed dynamic deflection mechanism will lead the state transition into one of the states in black-hole clusters permanently, thus preventing attackers from retrieving the original design.

As 3D ICs bring in new and unique security vulnerabilities, this dissertation further extends the 2D obfuscation method to tackle the security challenges emerged in 3D ICs. A transistor-level camouflaged logic locking method is proposed for monolithic 3D (M3D) ICs. This method locks M3D logic gates by independently inserting parallel and/or serial locking transistors in the network of P-type and N-type metal-oxide-semiconductor field effect transistors. Moreover, contact camouflaging technique is exploited to thwart image-analysis based reverse engineering attack.

Power analysis is one of the prominent non-invasive attacks, which can retrieve the secret key used in cryptographic systems. Despite that power analysis attacks and respective countermeasures in 2D ICs have been widely investigated, there is a lack of study on the impact of intrinsic noise on the efficiency of power analysis attacks in 3D ICs. To fill this gap, this dissertation analyzes the characteristics of the noise induced by power distribution network (PDN) and proposes to utilize the cross-plane PDN noise to develop a novel countermeasure against the correlation power analysis attack in 3D ICs.


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