Welcome to the Natural Polymers and Photonics Lab!

Dr. Schauer and the Natural Polymers and Photonics (NPP) research group work primarily in the area of natural polymers as a platform for multifunctional materials. The group’s research entails processing natural materials into nanofibers and thin films for water purification, heavy metal detection, cellular biosensors and tissue engineering scaffolds (bone, skin and spinal cord). Polysaccharides currently under investigation are chitin, chitosan, alginate, chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid, as well as their derivatives and composites. Additionally, the group has recently started exploring the use of industrial food waste and natural fibers to create composites.

Dr. Caroline Schauer selected as the inaugural holder of the Margaret C. Burns Chair in Engineering.

It was announced on May 19, 2021 that Dr. Caroline Schauer, associate dean, research and faculty affairs and professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, has been appointed the inaugural Margaret C. Burns Chair in Engineering. Named for Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering alumna Margaret C. “Peggy” Burns, ’79, the Margaret C. Burns Chair was established to support a faculty member who champions women, minorities, and members of the LGBTQ community. More details regarding the appointment can be found here.

Dr. Caroline Schauer to be inducted into medical and biological engineering elite

It was announced on February 15, 2021 that Dr. Schauer was elected to the College of Fellows within the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). Dr. Schauer was nominated, reviewed, and elected for outstanding contributions to natural polymer processing into nanoscale fibers and yarns for tissue engineering applications. A copy of the AIMBE press release can be found here.