2022 MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit

Symposium EN09-Sustainable and Renewable Polymers and Bio-Based Materials—From Fundamental Science to Applications

With materials consumption constantly increasing and the waste accumulating and contaminating our land, water, and air, we are now facing a global challenge that has never been more pressing. Some of the most promising avenues currently studied in the field of sustainable materials are to substitute resource-intensive and hazardous materials with renewable and non-toxic materials, redesign manufacturing processes to be less wasteful and consume less energy, integrate synthetic biology tools, and develop viable end-of-life strategies. Realizing these strategies requires materials scientists, chemical and process engineers, synthetic biologists, environmental scientists and chemists to collaboratively provide solutions to address this multifaceted global challenge. This symposium will be centered around these strategies and areas of expertise, with a particular focus on polymers and bio-based materials. Areas of interest span the following emerging topics: development of new materials that are either biodegradable or recyclable, materials obtained using low-energy or waste-less processing methods, biobased, bioderived or self-grown materials and their composites, self-healing materials, waste-derived materials, engineered living materials and structural living materials, policies for banning toxic and environmentally hazardous chemicals from products and strategies to develop alternative materials to replace such chemicals, life cycle assessment of sustainable materials, materials recovery and studies of biodegradation and recycling or regeneration of sustainable materials. Finally, our symposium will include a roundtable discussion on integrating sustainability into materials science education.

Topics will include:

  • Development of novel biodegradable or recyclable materials (including nanomanufacturing methods for biomass-based materials and composites, aerogels, 3D printing filaments, bioplastics)
  • Materials obtained from low energy, or waste-less processing methods
  • Bio-based, bio-derived or self-grown materials and their composites (including engineered living materials and structural living materials)
  • Biodegradable polymers synthesis, processing and characterization
  • Self-healing materials
  • Waste-derived materials
  • Sustainable structural materials (including bioconcrete, natural fiber concrete)
  • Life-cycle-assessment of sustainable materials
  • Studies of biodegradation and recycling or regeneration of sustainable materials
  • Removing toxic chemicals from products: science and policy
  • Integrating sustainability into materials science education

Invited Speakers (tentative):

  • Mahdi Abu-Omar (University of California, Santa Barbara, USA)
  • Hal Alper (The University of Texas at Austin, USA)
  • Renata Bura (University of Washington, USA)
  • Hoyong Chung (Florida State University, USA)
  • Noémie-Manuelle Dorval Courchesne (McGill University, Canada)
  • David Grewell (North Dakota State University, USA)
  • Rick Gustafson (University of Washington, USA)
  • Haoliang Huang (South China University of Technology, China)
  • Molly Jacobs (University of Massachusetts Lowell, USA)
  • Samantha Kristufek (Texas Tech University, USA)
  • Janet Nudelman (Breast Cancer Prevention Partners, USA)
  • Keiji Numata (RIKEN, Japan)
  • Kristiina Oksman (Lulea University of Technology, Sweden)
  • Carlos Quiroz-Arita (Sandia National Laboratories, USA)
  • Megan Robertson (University of Houston, USA)
  • Mark Rossi (Clean Production Action, USA)
  • Lynn Rothschild (NASA Ames Research Center, USA)
  • Wil V. Srubar III (University of Colorado Boulder, USA)
  • Vakhitova Tatiana Vadimovna (Ansys, Inc., United Kingdom)
  • Ulrike Wegst (Northeastern University, USA)
  • Jeffrey Youngblood (Purdue University, USA)

Symposium Organizers

Eleftheria Roumeli

University of Washington

Materials Science and Engineering

Bichlien Nguyen
Microsoft Research

Julie M. Schoenung
University of California, Irvine

Ashley White
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

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MRS publishes with Springer Nature

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