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Current Students of the Thames-Rawlins Research Group






Stephen Foster Stephen Foster
Hometown: Clinton, MS
Education: B.S., Polymer Science and Engineering, University of Southern Mississippi

Degree Track: Doctoral Student, Polymer Science and Engineering

Fatigue represents a serious engineering problem for using materials under cyclic loading conditions.  Manufacturer’s of parts made from polymers must take into account that strength properties of polymers can degrade under repetitive stress.  To date, a satisfactory understanding of the underlying cause of fatigue in thermoset polymers has not been achieved.  My research is to attempt to quantify preliminary molecular damage that leads to subsequent failure of thermoset polymers subjected to mechanical fatigue.

Austin Maples

Austin Maples
Hometown:
BS in Chemistry/minor in Coatings and Polymeric Materials, North Dakota State University
Doctoral student in Polymer Science and Engineering, The University of Southern Mississippi

Present research focus is on developing printing techniques to provide precise spatial positioning of corrosive materials and probes to monitor corrosion, and correlate the placement with time of exposure.

AWARDS:

 

David Krzeminski

David Krzeminski
Hometown: Grandville, MI
B.S., Materials Science and Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University.
B.S., Biomedical Engineering ,Carnegie Mellon University.
Doctoral student in Sports & High Performance Materials at The University of Southern Mississippi.

Present research interests include protective sports equipment, specifically polymeric materials used in head protection. Areas of focus include the characterization of thermoplastic materials during a focal impact event and the material's impact attenuation performance. Studying the thermal response and strain behavior will serve to characterize attenuation mechanisms and potential material degradation. The focus is to develop a fundamental understanding of energy dissipation mechanisms in these thermoplastic materials, the thermal response during these dynamic impact events, and how these lead to the onset of degradation. The overall research aim is to accurately predict the transfer of energy through a helmet system and onto the head, with the ultimate goal of minimizing the occurrence of concussions.

AWARDS:
Noetic Technologies Invent Your Future Competition FInalist

 

Naddine Lippa


Nadine Lippa
Hometown: Bergen, NY
B.S., Materials Science & Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University.
Doctoral student in Sports & High Performance Materials at The University of Southern Mississippi.

Present research aims to concomitantly understand changes in runners and polymeric foam materials which mitigate impact forces in running footwear to reduce the incidence of overuse injury. My polymer focus is to quantify the service life of ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) foams used in footwear materials via: (1) biofidelic fatigue testing, and (2) molecular-level characterization. I also study human muscle activity as a function of foam thickness to elucidate differences in biomechanics produced by various foam interventions..

Greg Curtzwiler


Greg Curtzwiler
Hometown:
B.S., Biochemistry, California Polytechnic State University
M.S., Polymers and Coatings, California Polytechnic State University
Doctoral student in Polymer Science and Engineering, The University of Southern Mississippi

Present research focus is on understanding the selective chemical modification of carbon nanotubes and its effect on three-dimensional self-assembly in polymers.

AWARDS:

Bob Peterson

Bob Peterson
Hometown:
B.S., Chemistry (Forensic Science emphasis), Carroll University

Present research focus is on the mechanistic understanding of Grignard metathesis (GRIM) polymerization of dibromothiophenesto improve control of polythiophene electronic structure for anti-corrosion applications

AWARDS:

Diana Gottschalk

Diana Gottschalk
Hometown:
BS, Chemistry, James Madison University
MS, Materials Science & Engineering, Iowa State University
Doctoral student in Polymer Science and Engineering, The University of Southern Mississippi

Present research interests include improving understanding and control of alkoxysilane pretreatments for corrosion protection. Manipulation and optimization ofsiloxaneand metallo-siloxanebonds at thecoatingmetal interface to increase corrosion resistance by acting as a water barrier and strong adhesive. This work includes investigations in substraten ifluence on water uptake and manipulation of coating permeability.

AWARDS:

Christina Konecki

Christina Konecki
Hometown:
B.A., Chemistry, Carthage College

Research focus is understanding the different types of water within corrosion control coating networks and how these water types influence the onset of corrosion and alter performance properties. Two papers submitted for publication, presented four posters, and given three presentations on my various research projects. Lectured various topics for the Surface Coatings class and supervised lab sections (Surface Coatings, Material World, Organic Chemistry, Advanced Organic Chemistry, General Chemistry). Previous background includes method development of a facile approach to monitoring flash chromatography.

AWARDS:

Mark Early

Mark Early
Hometown:
B.S., Chemistry with concentration in Polymers and Coatings, California Polytechnic State University
Doctoral student inPolymer Science and Engineering, The University of Southern Mississippi

Research focus on structure-property relationships for polymers in surface coatings, corrosion control, and functional coatings. Current research focus is on the encapsulation of L-lactate dehydrogenase, enzyme cofactors, and electron transfer mediators for fundamental research in bio-based fuel cells. Chemistries of research interest include proteins, silanesfor sol-gels and surface modification, Gold-thiolsurface chemistry, flavins, NAD/NADH analogs, and phenoxy resins.

AWARDS:

Yidan Guan

Yidan Guan
Hometown:Taiyuan, China
B.S., Polymer Science and Engineering, Beijing University of Chemical Technology
M.S., Materials Science and Engineering, Beijing University of Chemical Technology

Present research focuses on graphene oxide materials and its modification for enhanced barrier property in waterborne coatings; utilization of graphene-like lamellar in anti-corrosion coatings and synergistic effect with patterned surface for hydrophobicity.

AWARDS:

 

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