Opportunity at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Polymers from Renewable Feedstocks for Sustainability
Material Measurement Laboratory, Materials Science and Engineering Division
Please note: This Agency only participates in the February and August reviews.
|Kathryn L. Beers
The goal of meeting the needs of those living today without compromising the needs of future generations is at the forefront of current public policy. The reliance on petroleum as a polymer feedstock cannot continue indefinitely. Furthermore, there are great environmental benefits to be had in the removal of toxic heavy metal catalysts from the polymerization process. It is for these reasons that enzymatically-catalyzed polymers made from renewable feedstocks have gained prominence in recent years. Our goal is to develop quantitative measurement methods to characterize these emerging polymers. Current work focuses on mass spectrometry and chromatography to measure molecular mass distribution and end group composition to determine relative rates of chain initiation, transfer, and termination. We measure copolymer distribution in order of the range and specificity of a given catalyst and set of reaction conditions. We seek innovative proposals in the area of materials characterization including (but not limited to) chemical composition, surface and thin-film behavior, and general physical properties such as mechanical or electrical quantities. Proposals that promote rapid commercialization of sustainable polymers are particularly encouraged.
Green chemistry; Materials characterization; Renewable; Sustainability;
Open to U.S. citizens
Open to Postdoctoral applicants