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Prof. Michael K.C. Tam “Cellulose Nanocrystal-a promising sustainable nanomaterial for advanced engineering applications”

October 25 @ 4:00 am - 4:00 pm

Prof. Michael K.C. Tam

Department of Chemical Engineering, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology, University of Waterloo, Canada



Nanotechnology is anticipated to be the next technological wave that will drive many of theinnovations in science and engineering. In this discipline, there is a renewed impetus to developnanomaterials from renewable sources due to the negative impact of using raw materials fromtraditional carbon sources, such as crude oil. New opportunities in the use of sustainable andrenewable material for various advanced engineering applications exist, and cellulose nanocrystal(CNC) offers a new route to product development and formulations in these industrial sectors. Thetalk will focus on the important role CNC functionalization plays in imparting attractive propertiesthat are critical for their applications. I will discuss the physical interactions between CNC andvarious amphiphilic compounds, and how these interactions impact their stability andmicrostructure. In order to fully elucidate the microstructural evolution of CNC/surfactantinteractions, rapid and robust characterization techniques for quantifying the evolving molecularstructure were used to elucidate their morphologies and microstructure. Various functionalizationstrategies on the surface of CNC, such as with amphiphilic polymers, inorganic and metallicnanoparticles was developed and exploited for applications in Pickering emulsions, anti-microbialsystems, engineered food systems, water treatment and sustainable catalysts. I will end mypresentation with some comments on the future directions and new opportunities of CNC in otherrelated market sectors.


Michael Tam obtained his B.Eng. and Ph.D. degrees inChemical engineering from Monash University, Australia in 1982 and1991 respectively. He spent 18 months on a postdoctoral fellowship atthe Department of Chemical Engineering, McMaster UniversityCanada, and subsequently taught at Nanyang Technological University,Singapore for 15 years. In June 2007 he joined the Department ofChemical Engineering, University of Waterloo as a tenured fullprofessor, and holds the position of University Research Chair in thefield of functional colloids and sustainable nanomaterials. He is anactive member of the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology. Hisresearch interests are in colloids, self-assembly systems, polymer-surfactant interactions, and drug delivery systems. He has publishedmore than 300 journal articles in various fields of polymer science andengineering. His Google citation exceeds 15,500 and his H-index is 64. He is also an associateeditor of ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering.Michael KC Tam, Professor & University Research ChairDepartment of Chemical EngineeringUniversity of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West,Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1


October 25
4:00 am - 4:00 pm
Event Category:




Luisa De Cola