Seshadri Ramkumar

Three-day virtual conference on Materials Research set 

Posted July 15, 2021

By Seshadri Ramkumar

LUBBOCK, Texas – Functional and advanced materials are shining in the wake of COVID-19, as they are recognized as important live saving materials.


As COVID-19 starts to slowly fade away with full vaccination, economic activities will rise with enhanced consumer spending. Awareness has risen on the need and use of earth-friendly materials such as cotton and the need for advanced materials to cater to needs of citizens for all walks of life from medicine to infrastructure.


Coimbatore, India-based Kumaraguru College of Technology (KCT) has realized the timely need to disseminate information on ongoing research in materials science to wider audience. KCT is organizing a three-day virtual event, “International Conference on Materials Research in Science and Engineering,” July 23-25. Leading experts representing academia, industry and research organizations such as India’s Defense Research and Development Organization are participating in the event.


In speaking about the conference, Dr. D. Saravanan, principal of the college, said: “It is an opportunity during this pandemic to exchange thoughts and research ideas for a safe and healthy world. Carefully selected themes such as sustainable materials, PPE and functional materials will help the researchers to collaborate and propose novel solutions to the problems.”


Prof. Eric Hequet, a leading expert in cotton quality who is the associate vice president for Research at Texas Tech University, will provide a keynote on the importance of cotton fiber quality. With the textile industry’s growing interest in sustainable materials, it is important that good quality cotton fibers are used by the industry.


“Sustainability is essential to the long-term success of the textile industry,” Hequet said. “We need to reduce the environmental impact of our industry from the fiber production to consumer, including the final disposal of textile products. In addition, the economic and social impacts must be considered.”


Prof. Gang Sun of University of California, Davis will address a timely topic on the development of antiviral and antibacterial masks.


“It is evident from the ongoing pandemic that the current PPEs for protecting both professionals and publics may not be perfect,” Sun said. “Development of functional textiles that can meet new challenges are urgently needed. Antiviral and antibacterial functions on textiles could eliminate pathogens deposited on external surfaces and reduce potential transmissions of pathogens caused by improper use of face masks.”


Prof. Seeram Ramakrishna, who heads the Center for Nanofibers and Nanotechnology at the National University of Singapore, will present results from his two decades of research in nanofibers.


Addressing a topical issue, this scribe will talk about, “Advances in Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE).” Ongoing research in the Nonwovens and Advanced Materials Laboratory at Texas Tech University has shown the importance of face masks in curtailing the spread of COVID-19. PPE is important to fight the current and future pandemics.


In addition to these talks, leading experts from India, the United States, the United Kingdom, Malaysia, Singapore and Finland are participating to discuss broad based subjects within the domain of advanced and novel materials.


July being a plastic-free month, it is no wonder that the virtual event is pitching topics such as cotton, sustainable chemistry and materials. 


“International leading speakers with rich experience in the domains of materials, engineering and technology are expected to enrich every session with new ideas, enabling the event to be a platform for international collaboration and networking,” Saravanan said.


For more information on the conference, please click here.


Dr. Seshadri Ramkumar, Ph.D, FTA (honorary), is a professor at the Nonwovens & Advanced Materials Laboratory at Texas Tech.

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