Date: May 23, 2012
Time: Noon - 1:00 p.m. EDT
Grade Level: 9-12
STEM Subjects: Chemistry: atoms, polymers, nanotechnology
Science and technology: Understanding science and technology
STEM Careers: Research Materials Engineer: Researches and studies the structures and chemical properties of various natural and manmade materials, including metals, alloys, rubber, ceramics, semiconductors, polymers and glass. Determines ways to strengthen or combine materials or develops new materials with new or specific properties for use in a variety of products and applications.
In recognition of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, Mia Siochi, a research materials engineer at NASA, answered student questions about nanotechnology, self-healing materials and other emerging aerospace materials and systems of the future.
Siochi has one of the most futuristic jobs there is. She works with emerging technologies that could change the way aerospace structures are built in the future. She leads efforts to develop super-strong, lightweight structural materials based on carbon nanomaterials. Siochi is working on engineered surfaces that prevent insects from sticking to aircraft wings to enhance fuel efficiency. She also is working on self-healing material systems. These materials can prevent catastrophic damage from projectile penetration because of their ability to self-heal if punctured.
Siochi was born and grew up in Manila in the Philippines, where she attended Immaculate Conception Academy. She received a Bachelor of Science in chemistry from the Ateneo de Manila University, a liberal arts Jesuit University. Soichi earned a master's degree in surface chemistry and a doctorate in polymer science from Virginia Tech.
Her hobbies include cooking, spirituality, reading and family activities.
› NASA eClips: Self-Healing Materials video
› NASA eClips: Educator Guide - Self-Healing Materials, Grades 6-8 [PDF 2.9 MB]
› NASA 360, Season 2, Show 13 (segment 17:09 – 22:45)
› NASA 360, Season 2, Show 13 Transcript
› The Next Giant Leap →
› Women@NASA: Mia Siochi →