Dr. Ronen Berkovich

Dr. Ronen Berkovich  Profile

Senior lecturer

Department : Department of Chemical Engineering
Room : 210
מתקן חלוץ - 64
Phone : 972-74-7728930
Email : berkovir@bgu.ac.il
Office Hours :  


  • 2010 Ph.D., Chemical Physics, Tel-Aviv University, Israel.
  • - Thesis title: From Force Spectroscopy to Diffusion: Single-Molecule vs. Ensemble.
  • - Advisors: Josef (Yossi) Klafter, Ph.D. and Michael Urbakh, Ph.D.
  • 2002 B.Sc., Chemical Engineering, Technion, Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel.

Research Interests

  • Single molecule biophysics, force spectroscopy, statistical-mechanics, nano-friction (nanotribology).
  • Force spectroscopy techniques possess the ability to detect subtle details in protein dynamics at sub-nanometer resolution, bridge physics, chemistry, biology and engineering. My lab interweaves studies of atomic-scale friction and dynamic behavior of single proteins under external forces.

Research Projects

  • 1. Single molecule biophysics . Study of the equilibrium and nonequilibrium dynamics of proteins and polymers on the single molecule level using Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). A main focus will be on exploring proteins and polymers phase-transitions in the presence of co-solutes. The AFM single molecule measurements will be complemented by developing the relevant theory and numerical simulations. This study will be expanded to study missfolding of disordered proteins that are related to neurodegenerative diseases and to polymeric materials, such as polysaccharides, to contribute understanding specific ion effects and to the design of future technological applications.
  • 2. Atomic friction of surfaces . The AFM is known to image surface topologies with exceptional resolution, providing atomic-scale details of various surfaces. Through the interaction between the sharp AFM cantilever tip and the surface, various forces can be measured during the scanning experiment. One of the key features for understanding the activity various materials lies in their surface energy. One of the key features for understanding the activity various materials lies in their surface energy. Here we are interested in the application of nonequilibrium work relations (such as the Jarzynski equility) to reconstruct the surface potential from nano-tribological measurements of mono-crystals and catalysts.