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CSP team wins BASF Science Competition

A team of graduate student researchers—Alex Mannion, Tessie Panthani, Debbie Schneiderman, and Marie Vanderlaan—has won the BASF 150th Anniversary North American Science Competition: Lightweight Solutions for a Sustainable Future. They work with the Center for Sustainable Polymers and are from the departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering & Materials Science (CEMS).

BASF's challenge focused on the question of what chemistries can be used to create lightweight solutions with improved end of life management. The competition was designed to encourage innovative and game-changing ideas the address lightweight challenges in three areas— food, smart energy, and urban living. The CSP researchers' project was on sustainable polyurethane foams. They were one of five teams that won $5,000 to support their project and chosen to present their concept to BASF executives.

As the winning team, they received an all-expense paid trip to BASF International Summer Course in Ludwigshafen Germany in August, which is an opportunity to meet with other young scientists from around the world, to gain insight into an international company, and to learn about the broad field of research and technology activities, strategies, innovation management and other topics.

Alex Mannion is a graduate student in CEMS who is advised by Professors Frank Bates and Chris Macosko;  Tessie Panthani is a graduate student in CEMS who is advised by Professor Bates; Debbie Schneiderman and Marie Vanderlaan are graduate students in the Department of Chemistry who are advised by Professor Marc Hillmyer.

BASF Scientific Competition winners, from left, Alex Mannion, Debbie Schneiderman, Marie Vanderlaan, and Tessie Panthani.