Manufacturing and Analysis of New Emerging and Multifunctional Materials:
Smart Composites: Multi-functional, Green Composites and Hybrids, Aging Properties
Active Materials: Electroactive polymers, Shape Memory materials, Dielectrics
Bio-inspired materials: Meta-materials, High Fatigue Life, Self-healing Materials
- Stimuli Responsive Materials
This research program investigates the application of responsive stimuli polymers in smart materials-based transducers. This research designs and evaluates active materials and composites such as conductive polymers, piezoelectrics, dielectrics, shape memory polymers used as flexible substrates for sensors, actuators, capacitors in energy and biomedical sectors. Materials such as polyaniline, polypyrrole, PVDF, and 1D and 2D materials: carbon nanotubes, graphene. We fabricate multiple transducers systems with light weight, miniaturized and modular performance. We investigate the fabrication and percolation behaviour of solid and porous conductive polyblends. This research focuses on the fabrication of new smart-based hybrids for e-textile sensors, energy harvester batteries, and fuel cells applications.
- Meta Materials
This research involves the manufacturing technology and properties of metamaterials and functionally graded materials systems. The main research outcome is the production of new materials comprised of origami based materials, and functionally graded materials. These materials are used as structural composites systems, high impact resistance and vibration damping applications. We have developed for the first time an active metamaterial as Origami (folding structures systems) that is based on Miuri Origami made of shape memory blends. The work is currently applied for head health programs in helmets and for body armor. This research is also applied in mechanical damping for structural applications in transportation, and pipelines industry.
- Nanostructured Materials
We are conducting research work on the development of sustainable polymers, including nano and fiber composites with innovative results. Electrospinning, fiber spinning, nanostructures and nanofibers in polymer matrices have been obtained using various fabrication methods. The mechanical, physical and transport properties and their models in nanostructured polymers, fiber systems and textiles are elucidated. This research aims to the fundamental understanding of the interaction of polymer matrix with nano features and fibres and in determining the optimum processing and materials parameters required to obtain sustainable polymers for applications such as automotive, aerospace, electronic packaging. These materials comply with the ever increasing demands for environmental protection, as well as the utilization of recycled materials in industrial applications.
- Biopolymers, fibers and textiles
This research involves the manufacturing technology and properties of bio-based and environmental polymer and fibers systems. The main research outcome is the production of new materials comprised of biodegradable blends such as PLGA, PCL, PLA/PHA, and biodegradable composites and fibers such as Chitosan, cellulose, HA, Nanocalys, Lignin. The materials are used for renewable products, devices and textiles. These materials are also used as bioscaffolds in human tissue engineering applications which is becoming a critical aspect of regenerative medicine and has significant impacts on the ability of patients to heal quickly with minimum side effects. Our research is leading the way in transforming solid biopolymers and gels, into textiles for wearables. Furthermore, it improves the application of synthetic tissues in drug delivery systems and phantoms in medical imaging techniques.