Research

Green Materials Fabrication Inspired by Nature

Our group believes that nature has something to teach humans about how to make better materials in a more sustainable way.

Living organisms rapidly fabricate a range of high performance biopolymeric materials such as silk and mussel byssus from biomolecular building blocks (e.g. proteins) via green bottom-up assembly processes. These materials provide important role models for green polymer fabrication.

We utilize advanced material characterization techniques combined with traditional biochemical analysis to investigate why these materials have such excellent properties and how they are self-assembled. We then apply these distilled principles to create novel polymeric materials via advanced materials processing methods.

Our main research goals are to:

1) Elucidate biogenic structure-function relationships and bio-fabrication processes.

2) Adapt natural design principles for development of advanced bio-inspired materials.