Lawrence Drzal

Lawrence  Drzal
  • University Distinguished Professor
  • Director
  • Chemical Engineering and Materials Science




Professor Drzal's research is directed at exploring materials and processes that are efficient, useful for structural applications and environmentally friendly. This includes materials, interfaces and processing that are centered on both petroleum based and biobased polymers; inorganic and biobased reinforcements, nanoreinforcements and processes to fabricate them into composite materials. One area of research underpinning all of these activities is research into the fundamentals of adhesion. Some potential process technologies under active investigation are ultraviolet light, microwave, electron beam and powder processing. Major research is being undertaken to develop biobased, sustainable, structural biocomposites that can replace petroleum based structural composites. This includes new biobased biofiber reinforcements from plants, bioplastics from plant chemicals, and new methods for processing biocomposites with high reinforcement contents and surface treatments for optimization of biocomposite properties.


Graphene; graphite; carbon; cellulose; nanoparticles; nanotechnology; nanocomposites, surfaces; interfaces; polymers, adhesion, surface chemistry; surface characterization; polymer composite processing; ultraviolet light; cellulose nanowhiskers; microfibers; batteries; solar cells; supercapacitors; conductive films.