This research area addresses the synthesis, characterisation and theoretical understanding of novel polymer materials.
This research area addresses the synthesis, characterisation and theoretical understanding of novel polymer materials. It includes studies into:
- novel polymer synthesis
- polymer drug delivery
- polymer nanocomposites
- responsive polymers
- block co-polymers
- soft nanotechnology.
It does not include research into polymers for energy applications or photonic polymers, which are covered in related research areas.
As well as directly helping to meet a range of real world challenges, this area enables a number of other research areas. The focus will be to build on core strengths and drive links with healthcare challenges and opportunities arising from advanced materials research.
Specifically, we aim to:
- maintain the UK’s core strengths in the synthesis and characterisation of polymers and composites
- facilitate links with the life sciences, building on the strong links with the Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering research area, and ensuring pull through to clinical application – for example, through the Healthcare Technologies Impact and Translation Toolkit)
- build on the key role this area plays in the advanced materials field, including developing awareness of how this affects other research areas across themes, including links to the Sir Henry Royce Institute, to ensure that we understand government and industrial drivers for communicating important technical challenges and share appropriate opportunities
- ensure the community is fully engaged in EPSRC research opportunities in areas where there is strong industrial interest in polymers, such as composite materials for aerospace and polymers for drug delivery.
In the polymer materials area, there is a good ‘people balance’ featuring established leaders, fellows and centres for doctoral training (CDTs). We will look to maintain this and share best practice.
Other aims include maintaining access to large facilities and encouraging links to users to accelerate impact. Working across EPSRC themes will be important in addressing the multidisciplinary opportunities in this area.