Keith Brown

Keith Brown

Affiliate Faculty (Assistant Professor - ENG/ME)
Office: PHO, Room 920. 617-353-4841


Research Interests:

Nanomanufacturing and Hierarchical Materials

My group is an interdisciplinary research program at the intersection of nanotechnology and soft materials with three goals: (1) Learn how to make novel materials by merging the strengths of top-down patterning and bottom-up assembly. (2) Investigate how mesoscopic order affects the behavior of soft materials such as polymers and proteins. (3) Apply these lessons to make new materials and devices that leverage hierarchical structure.

Selected Publications:

“Elasticity and Failure of Liquid Marbles: Influence of Particle Coating and Marble Volume”, A Rendos, N Alsharif, BL Kim, KA Brown, Soft Matter, 2017

“Polymer nanomechanics: Separating the size effect from the substrate effect in nanoindentation”, L Li, LM Encarnacao, KA Brown, Applied Physics Letters 110 (4), 043105

“Quantifying Liquid Transport and Patterning using Atomic Force Microscopy”, N Farmakidis, KA Brown, Langmuir, 2017

“Desktop nanofabrication with massively multiplexed beam pen lithography”, X Liao, KA Brown, AL Schmucker, G Liu, S He, W Shim, CA Mirkin, Nature communications 4, 2103, 2013

“Triaxial AFM probes for non-contact trapping and manipulation”, KA Brown, RM Westervelt, Nano letters 11, 3197, 2011

For a full list of publications, please visit


  • Ph.D. in applied physics, Harvard University
  • S.B. in Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Dr. Keith A. Brown is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Materials Science & Engineering, and Physics and the Moorman-Simon Interdisciplinary Career Development Professor at Boston University. He earned a Ph.D. in Applied Physics at Harvard University under the guidance of Robert M. Westervelt and an S.B. in physics from MIT. Following his doctoral work, he was an International Institute for Nanotechnology postdoctoral fellow with Chad A. Mirkin at Northwestern University. His work has been recognized through the reception of awards including the Materials Science and Engineering Innovation award from Boston University, the Omar Farha Award for Research Leadership from Northwestern University, the American Vacuum Society Nanometer-Scale Science and Technology Division Postdoctoral Award, and the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship. Keith is currently serving on the Nano Letters Early Career Advisory Board as well as on the Executive Committee of the Nanoscale Science and Technology Division of the American Vacuum Society.