The goals of the project are strongly aligned with the statewide plans for development in science and technology for both Louisiana and Mississippi. Both states have significant research talent in chemistry, materials, and computations which are synergistic with the significant economic impact of the polymer industry of the region. The development of computer software to monitor and control polymer synthesis has the potential to impact the Gulf region and national polymer industry by advancing the capabilities for materials synthesis. Software development will be used to offer polymer characterization workshops and catalyze the development of new patents in materials synthesis. Regional manufacturers will play a role in using the results from computational and materials research and will participate by providing internships for participating graduate students. Advancing polymer manufacture and control will increase efficiency in the use of energy, non-renewable feedstocks, and plant and labor time, while reducing emissions and increasing safety.

Technical Abstract

The research is aligned with the Materials Genome Initiative?s goals of accelerating advanced materials development, with computational research serving as a key component for discovery and processing guidance. With its scientific focus on developing and proving the next-generation polymerization monitoring platform, the research promises to overcome barriers in bringing stimuli responsive polymers (SRPs) to market and strengthen regional economic competitiveness. Research activities are aligned along the materials design and process design paths to develop new experimental and computational tools for accelerating materials development and bridging polymer synthesis to manufacture. New SRP materials will be designed using polymer synthesis, molecular modeling, and computational control. Outcomes will include: self-assembled polymers for drug delivery and environmental remediation, self-healing polymer networks, and smart nano-composites using SRP-modified nanoparticles as building blocks. The results have the potential to transform medical and sustainable materials applications.

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Mississippi State University
Mississippi State
United States
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