Diana Berman standing in hallway

UNT College of Engineering Associate Professor in the Materials Science & Engineering Department, Diana Berman was recently selected as the recipient of the Fulbright award to Israel in the academic year 2023-2024.

Berman’s research is in the field of tribology, the science of wear, friction, and lubrication, and focuses on synthesis and friction and wear characterization of functional nanostructured materials and coatings. Tribology is among the most active fields of study; however, Berman believes there is still far more to discover stating “the limited understanding of friction and wear processes and their effect on materials reconstruction continues to lead to the failure of the moving systems used in various applications.”

Tel Aviv University Professors Michael Urbakh and Oded Hod will host and collaborate with Berman in Israel. The new research program initiated with the host university will concentrate on “unifying experimental and theoretical approaches for addressing the major challenges of tribology.” Urbakh and Hod’s research in theoretical modeling and computer simulations of tribological systems will work in synergy with Berman’s research to form the base of the project’s success.

Entering this experience with an open mind, Berman envisions how this will impact her approaches to teaching and research in a beneficial way. Being exposed to the differences in culture, educational systems, and research environments will expand her ability to “foster knowledge exchange across multicultural communities and strengthen UNT's recognition as a Minority Serving University.”

Berman will utilize the award during the Spring of 2024 and hopes it is a step towards enabling “the opportunity for exciting collaborations and discoveries that can lead to the design of new materials for energy, biomedical, and environmental applications.”