Meeting Summary May 5, 2010 in CCR 201

Posted: May 31, 2010

Discussion topics:

1.  Definition of “sustainable materials

            As in the April ’10 meeting, we had vigorous discussion about how the group should define itself, as ‘sustainable’ can be an all-encompassing area.  The group decided to focus on areas where our combined skill sets would have the most impact. 


2. Use business demand to guide research

Scientists are good at designing “elegant solutions to problems that don’t exist”.  The group decided to more closely involve the business school to guide the scientists/engineers on the research programs.  We should consider socio-economic driving forces such as marketing, regulations, appeal for ‘natural products’, and potential for reaching large numbers of consumers through Walgreen’s/Wal-Mart partnerships.


3. Monthly focus topics

            We brainstormed about topics that would highlight our best researchers and teach our colleagues to build a strong platform for future grant proposals.  The proposed format would be 30 min of presentations followed by 30 min of discussion.


June: Food packaging organized by Ludescher and Chikindas.  Packaging needs to be used in the short-term or ‘just long enough”.  Examples include fast food packaging (~ 2 hr) to raw meat in grocery stores (~ 2 wk)

            July: Biomaterials organized by Pelegri and Hultzsch

            August: Recycling/waste management organized by Lyons

            September: Personal care/cosmetics packaging organized by Chikindas

            October: Electronics and composites organized by Tomassone


Other proposed focus topics: RFID, structural/construction materials, pharmaceutical packaging; fuel cell membranes, functional materials


4. Identify grant/funding sources

            Suggestions included USDA, NSF, DOD as well as consumer care and cosmetic companies.


Following the meeting, representatives from the various schools were identified: Kevin Lyons (RBS), Mike Chikindas (SEBS), Rick Lehman (SOE) and Kathryn Uhrich (SAS).


Action items:

·       For monthly focus topics (June to October), clarify organizers, schedule room



Present: Kathryn Uhrich, Mike Chikindas, Young-Ju Lee, Kai Hultzsch, Rick Ludescher, Braun Kiess, Rick Lehman, Kevin Lyons, Kit Yam, Yicheng Lu, Mina Pelegri, Silvina Tomassone, Stephen Tse, Jay Vijayan