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New Materials Technology and Applications

From Linear to a Circular Economy_112620A
[From Linear to a Circular Economy - Government of Netherlands]
 

 

The Age of New Materials and The Materials Revolution

 

 

- The Materials Revolution

In the last decade of the 20th century, three simultaneous technological revolutions will dominate information technology, biotechnology, and new materials. While the first two are widely reported in the West, new material technologies have been largely ignored. The Japanese are quietly looking to new materials as their next growth industry. 

Throughout history, advances in materials and material technology have impacted humanity. Now, we may be on the verge of the next shift in this type of technology, enabling products and features we never believed possible. Materials of the future will need to meet three key criteria. They must be durable, lightweight and economical. This is due to the simple reason that it is now recognized that our natural resources are limited. To be able to make continued technological progress in the 21st century, societies need to adapt the way they manufacture so that as little work is done as possible. 

If chemistry is the core science, it is not surprising that chemical engineering supports a wide range of technologies. EITA focuses on research areas ranging from the production and manipulation of chemicals to energy, medicine, electronics and advanced materials with new properties.

 

- Materials Needs for the Industries of the Future

Since the Stone Age, Bronze Age, and Iron Age, the development of materials has helped expand the limits of human endeavor and achievement. Entering the 21st century, the demands of industries such as aerospace and automotive are pushing the frontiers of material performance to more extreme levels. 

Industrial demands demand materials that are lighter, tougher, thinner, denser, more flexible or rigid, as well as heat and wear resistant. At the same time, researchers are pushing the boundaries of what we imagined possible, seeking to improve and enhance existing materials while proposing entirely new materials that, while still years away from everyday use, could put us on entirely new technological paths. Therefore, the technological wonders of tomorrow must be composed of materials that can withstand these elements, while also requiring minimal energy to function. 

Some of the following materials may take decades to be useful to most of us, while others may change our world forever, and this list is far from exhaustive and in no particular order. Aerogels, graphene, artificial spider silk, carbon nanotubes, metamaterials, metallic glasses, metallic foams, transparent alumina, electronic textiles, molecular superglue.

 

- Emerging Materials Research

Emerging materials is a field of research focused on the design, production and understanding of novel materials with breakthrough properties. Tuning material properties according to the needs of the desired application has always been of great interest and challenge. For example, electronic devices have become part of the fabric of modern life: cell phones, wearable sensors, smart implants and smart cities all require new materials with improved functionality. 

The potential to capture the power of emerging materials is enormous, with profound implications for many aspects of our lives. Applications for these materials include, but are not limited to, low energy electronics and photonics, advanced composite materials, energy and manufacturing materials, 2D materials.

 
 

- Possible Research Topics

 

 

 

 [More to come ...]


 

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