Nikki Rentz is a Biological Research Technician at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Her work at NIST began in 2007 in the Materials Measurement Laboratory, and she subsequently moved to the Physical Measurement Laboratory in 2018. Her current research is split between the Magnetic Imaging and the Molecular and BioPhotonics Groups in the Applied Physics Division.
In the Magnetic Imaging Group, Nikki supports the calibration services for nuclear magnetic resonance relaxation timesand special tests (e.g., calibration, prototype testing) of various solution relaxation times and water self-diffusion.
In the Molecular and BioPhotonics Group, Nikki focuses on developing hydrogel matrices to support 3D cellular growth to imitate realistic tissue environments. These mimics are used to benchmark a variety of optical microscopy techniques as complementary viability assays. She has also worked on the development of SRMs for Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT).
Prior to her work in the Applied Physics Division, Nikki worked to support bacterial sensing in response to antibiotics by monitoring vibrations on resonant crystals. She also worked in nanotechnology, focusing on iron nanoparticle synthesis and incorporation into membranes for water treatment and alternative energy catalysis. The iron nanoparticles were characterized using a variety of techniques to evaluate size, morphology, composition, surface charge, functionalization, magnetization, lifetime, and catalytic activity.