May, 2010
Obituary: Richard J. Farris, Retired Distinguished University Professor, Polymer Science and Engineering Department

Richard J. Farris, a wide-ranging researcher who mentored and advised scores of graduate students in the Department of Polymer Science and Engineering over a career that spanned more than 33 years, died May 25 in Leeds.

March, 2010
Novel Foams Reduce Fire Risk

Treating soft furnishings with toxic flame-retardants could be avoided in the future thanks to a new non-flammable polymer developed by US scientists.

Polyurethanes are used in a wide variety of common products, including upholstery and mattresses, in the form of flexible foams. However, they are naturally combustible and flame-retardants must be added to meet safety regulations, but these can bring further disadvantages.

March, 2010
Chinese Scientists Expand Ties During Polymer Workshop at UMass Amherst

The Department of Polymer Science and Engineering (PSE) could be headed toward a “sister department” relationship with a polymer physics and chemistry laboratory at the Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry (CIAC) in China, according to department head David Hoagland.

March, 2010
Nanotech Expert Mark Tuominen Testifies on Capitol Hill

Leading nanotechnology researcher Mark Tuominen this week provided expert advice to Congress on where and how federal spending can better bolster nanomanufacturing. Tuominen, a professor of physics and co-director of the MassNanoTech Institute, said the purpose of his March 17 testimony was to boost research and development and to foster university-industry partnerships.

December, 2009
Western Massachusetts Partners Announce $600,000 Federal Grant and Collaborative Commitment to Boost Competitiveness of Precision Manufacturing Industry

The precision manufacturing industry in Western Massachusetts received a major boost today with the announcement of a $600,000 federal grant to foster innovative practices through a partnership with the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The two-year grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) follows an earlier state investment of $650,000 in industry competitiveness through the MTC’s John Adams Innovation Institute, and will be enhanced by a newly formed partnership between academic, workforce development and industry leaders in the region.

July, 2009
NIH funds study of new antibiotics to combat food-borne disease

A research team led by polymer scientist Gregory Tew that includes biotech firm PolyMedix, Inc. of Radnor, Pa., has received a first-year, $977,658 grant to study and develop new antibiotics against food-borne and related illnesses. Funding, to be shared by the University and PolyMedix, is from the National Institutes of Health’s Cooperative Research Partnerships for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Disease.

July, 2009
Michael F. Malone Named Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement at UMass Amherst

Michael F. Malone has been named vice chancellor for research and engagement at the University of Massachusetts Amherst by Chancellor Robert C. Holub. Malone, whose appointment is effective Aug. 17, has served as dean of the College of Engineering at UMass Amherst since 2004.

May, 2009
Professor Greg Tew Receives $100K from Gates Foundation to Support Global Health Research Project

A $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will support a global health research project conducted by polymer scientist Gregory Tew to pursue ideas that have never before been tested in fighting infectious diseases such as pneumonia, tuberculosis and diarrhea.

May, 2009
UMass Amherst Campus Chosen for Multimillion Dollar Energy Frontier Research Center

UMass Amherst has been chosen to host a new multimillion-dollar Energy Frontier Research Center to pursue advanced scientific research as part of a federal science initiative announced by President Obama.

February, 2009
'Transformative' method produces smallest, most perfect, ultradense polymer films ever

Like many creative but essentially conservative scientists, Tom Russell of Polymer Science and Engineering, in more than 30 years of research, would rarely use the term “truly transformative” about his work. Until now.