Penn State, University of Freiburg announce joint seed-grant recipients


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Convergence Center for Living Multifunctional Material Systems (LiMC2), in partnership with the University of Freiburg’s Cluster of Excellence for Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems (livMatS), has announced the recipients of the inaugural Living Multifunctional Materials Collaborative Research Seed Grant Program. Three joint faculty teams from Penn State and University of Freiburg were selected for the program.

The goal of the seed grant program is to advance the discovery of sustainable materials that are biological or inspired by biological principles. Successful projects will engage in high-impact multidisciplinary research, demonstrate a strong promise for external funding, and have a plan for fostering long-term collaboration.

“The teams selected advance the three areas of focus of LiMC2, namely living materials for sensing, adaptive architecture and advanced manufacturing,” said Zoubeida Ounaies, center director and professor and associate head for administration in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. “I look forward to seeing these teams of researchers leverage the unique strengths of our two institutions and, in the process, precipitate significant discoveries in the area of sustainable living materials.”

The selected projects are:

  • “Scalable Nanomanufacturing Technique for Bioinspired Nonpigmented Colored Fabrics” by Akhlesh Lakhtakia (Penn State) and Günter Reiter (University of Freiburg)
  • “Adaptive Low-CO2 Steel-Reinforced Cementitious Materials for Sustainable, Resilient, and Next-Generation Architectural Structures” by Juan Pablo Gevaudan Burgos (Penn State) and Michael Moseler (University of Freiburg)
  • “Additive Manufacturing of Tissue-Mimetic Dynamically-Responsive Multi-Materials” by Amir Sheikhi (Penn State), Seong Kim (Penn State), and Bastian Rapp (University of Freiburg)

“The Seed Grant program aims to maximize the center’s potential for innovation and set the scene for future endeavors,” said Professor Jürgen Rühe, director of livMatS. “We are looking forward to our seed to take root and develop into long-term collaborative and multi-disciplinary projects.”

For more information on research in the center, visit the LiMC2 website or contact Ounaies at LiMC2 is supported by Penn State’s Materials Research Institute and the Institutes of Energy and the Environment.


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