The Chemmat Knit – Newsletter

November 2019

 

The year is coming to an end, and this will be the last newsletter for 2019.

It has been a busy last few months and we have quite a bit to report. While you do check out this edition, I would draw your attention to the 4th year research projects presentations and the postgraduate symposium we had, two separate events that also function to showcase the latest research that the department is currently undertaking. The project titles are all shown in the articles so do have a look. Also if you would like to be invited to these events, do let us know.  In terms of communication and keeping in touch, we are hoping to create a mailing list that could be more complete, representing as much as we can, the full list of alumni from over 50 years of Chemmat.  Please do enter your email and details in the online form below, or email kerryn.levy@auckland.ac.nz

 

Best Wishes,

 

Ashvin Thambyah

Associate Professor & Head of Department

Chemical & Materials Engineering

 

 

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Chemmat Final Year Presentation

Chemmat Final Year Presentation

Another memorable Final Year presentations were held in the City Campus on Wednesday 30th October. Over 80 students and staff took part in the event and 28 departmental and 6 cross-departmental interesting presentations were held. There was an amazing diversity of...

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Factory tour to O-I Glass NZ

Factory tour to O-I Glass NZ

As mentioned at the beginning of the semester, I was keen on planning a factory tour to O-I Glass New Zealand with the students. This visit took place on Monday, 30 September, 1-3pm with 3 lecturers (myself, Dr Shanghai Wei, and Amanda DiIenno), and 10 students from...

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Congratulations Sesha!

Congratulations Sesha!

Congratulations to Chemmat PhD candidate Sesha Manuguri for successfully defending his PhD thesis, “Proteins, Polymers and Nanoparticles: Self-assembly Towards Functional Nanostructures”. Sesha’s supervisors were Dr Jenny Malmstrom (Chemmat) and Prof David...

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World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day

Chemmat was fortunate to have psychiatrist Dr Jane Casey accept our invitation to give a seminar to our students and staff on Thursday, 10 October to coincide with World Mental Health Day. Jane’s talk was targeted towards PhD students and gave strategies about...

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Extracting a powerful antioxidant from crayfish

Extracting a powerful antioxidant from crayfish

This year the Chemeca conference was held in Sydney, Australia from 29 September-2 October. At Chemeca, Chemmat’s Dr Kaveh Shahbaz presented slides from his recent study with Prof Mohammed Farid and Angela Yan, Chemmat Part III student. Kaveh’s...

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CMESA Pub Quiz

CMESA Pub Quiz

The Chemical and Materials Engineering Student Association (CMESA) hosted a Pub Quiz at Shadows on Thursday 19th September at 6.30pm. There was a range of questions from pop culture and sports to materials and processing. They also had a bonus “Guess the...

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CHEMECA 2019

CHEMECA 2019

The 48th Chemeca was held in Sydney NSW, Australia from 29 September – 2 October 2019. This annual meeting brings together chemical engineers from Australia, New Zealand and other countries to share their insights and innovations relevant to chemical engineers across...

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The C&M Class of 1989:  30-Year Reunion

The C&M Class of 1989: 30-Year Reunion

Class of ’89!   On 5th September, the department hosted a gathering and tour for some keen alumni of the 1989 cohort.  The afternoon started with tea and nibbles where alumni, staff and students had a chance to catch-up, be introduced and re-introduced, and...

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Scenes from our annual OPEN DAY – 31 August 2019

Scenes from our annual OPEN DAY – 31 August 2019

Enthusiastic visitors participated in materials-end products matching game. We received more than 650 responses. Congratulations to Lucy Jane English, Rowena Chin, Ella Lin who each won a subscription to KiwiCo. Photo: Popcorn maker – representing a fluidized-bed...

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Chemmat Annual Postgraduate Research Symposium

Chemmat Annual Postgraduate Research Symposium

The Annual PG symposium has become a regular event in the C&M Calendar, and this year it ran for the 4th time at the City campus on Monday, 9 September. The event is designed for PhD students to showcase their research to the wider community through different...

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Student internship evening

Student internship evening

On 8 May 2019, the Chemical and Materials Engineering Student Association (CMESA) hosted a student internship evening. They reported a great turnout, with both Part 2 and 3 students. The evening consisted of Part 3 and 4 students that spoke about their experiences...

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August message – Head of Department

The Chemmat Knit – Newsletter August 2019   Dear Colleagues This August issue reports on several items but importantly features a brief write up on the retirement event for Professor John Chen. John has been as much Chemmat as Chemmat has been John Chen. I am...

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Chemmat PhD Candidate wins award

Chemmat PhD Candidate wins award

Photo From Left: Chemmat’s Dr Saeid Baroutian, PhD Candidate Subhasree Bhasker, Des Mataga and Alan Routley from AUEA, Head of Chemmat, Associate Professor Ashvin Thambyah   About the Awardee: Subhasree Bhaskar is a Doctoral Candidate at Chemmat. Subhasree...

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Velocity Innovation Challenge winner

Velocity Innovation Challenge winner

Photo: Chemmat PhD Candidate, Misagh Ebrahimpour   Each year, the Velocity Innovation Challenge is held to encourage the University’s staff and students to share venture ideas to solve problems. The Faculty of Engineering is well represented in 2019’s...

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3D food printer at Chemmat

3D food printer at Chemmat

Food comes in all shapes, sizes and textures. And now you can print your own food. Chemmat has recently obtained a Foodini 3D Food Printer. The Foodini works on the principle of food paste extrusion and has the capability to print five different food materials within...

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‘Food’ of action in Christchurch

‘Food’ of action in Christchurch

  It was an exciting and delicious week in Christchurch. The New Zealand Food Safety Science & Research Centre (NZFSSRC) Annual Symposium and the New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology (NZIFST) Conference was held back-to-back in Christchurch...

Beer brewing at Chemmat

Beer brewing at Chemmat

  From left: Hugh Barlow, Leeju Kim, Stephanie Laycock, Kayla Fairbairn, and Hank Lloyd Beer brewing has started up again at Chemmat! The photo above was taken at the first brew group meeting while Chemmat’s Senior Technicians, Ray Hoffman and Peter Martin...

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NZPA celebrates successful win

NZPA celebrates successful win

Photo From left: Brian McMath, Anthony Meyer, Shanghai Wei, Sudip Ray, Micheal Pervan, Jinjing Liu, Mark Jones, Mark Taylor, André van Haaren, Monique Bateman, Karnika De Silva, Harshpreet Singh On 18 June NZ Product Accelerator celebrated the continuation of their...

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Chemmat’s ‘Paper of the Month’

Chemmat’s ‘Paper of the Month’

In order to increase the coverage of department research, we are launching ‘Paper of the Month’.

Each month, we will collect journal articles that have been published by staff members, as highlighted by our Google Scholar Alerts, and an ad hoc committee of a few researchers will review the papers and choose one to highlight. The Google Scholar Alerts may not catch all of the papers we’re publishing, so if you’re publishing a paper that you would like us to consider, please feel free to email Kerryn to make sure it’s included.

Ashvin will then follow up with the authors of the paper to write a short news article, which will be published on our external department website with the potential for wider press release if the paper has general appeal.

This is not meant to add too much further work or pressure for anyone but is just a fun way for us to ensure we’re regularly showcasing the research taking place in our department to a wider audience.

As it’s a new idea there will be lots of scope for improving the process, so please let us know your thoughts.

 

Chemmat at Enginuity Day

Chemmat at Enginuity Day

 

Enginuity day is an annual event organised by the Women in Engineering, University of Auckland to inspire young women to consider careers in engineering and to discover what it is like to study engineering at the University of Auckland. This year, the event was held on 4-5 July at City campus and we had 73 high school female students joining the event.

On 4 July, Chemmat held their hands-on and fun activities in Food Processing, Separation Process and Biomaterials for Year 13 high school girls.

One of the activities was processing chocolate noodles by Drs Jenny Malmstrom and Kelly Burrowes using a custom made extruder built by Technician Raymond Hoffman, which allowed students to relate the chocolate composition, texture and its ability to be extruded.

The second activity involved transforming dirty water to clean water with membrane separation technology by Dr Filicia Wicaksana and Professional Teaching Fellow Amanda DiIenno. Students had a hands-on experience to build a simple water filtration system using common materials such as sand, cotton, gravel and activated carbon. They also learned how membrane technology could be used for water filtration.

Our third activity was making colourful alginate worms by Drs Sophia Rodrigues, Josh Workman and Technician Peter Martin, to demonstrate cross-linking in hydrogels for use in cartilage replacement and food items. There was also an informative presentation by Associate Professor Ashvin Thambyah, Head of Department, covering Chemmat specialisation, pathways and possible careers.

NZ health care has a climate change problem

NZ health care has a climate change problem

  The health care sector may be as bad as the aviation industry when it comes to greenhouse gases and pollution. The anaesthetic gases released every year by one New Zealand hospital have the carbon footprint of 500 return flights between New Zealand and London,...

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Science: Cold pasteurisation works

Science: Cold pasteurisation works

  What happens when high pressure is applied to food and drink? If a domestic pressure cooker is used, the result might be a classic pot roast or a trendy smokey beef brisket. Both are good eating and achieved with about two atmospheric pressure, or roughly the...

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A clean solution for gases

A clean solution for gases

Photo: Chemmat’s Dr Saeid Baroutian   Researchers at the University of Auckland have estimated that the anaesthetic gases released by one hospital annually in New Zealand have the carbon footprint of 500 return plane journeys between New Zealand and London....

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Making food safe using pressure instead of heat

Making food safe using pressure instead of heat

Photo: Chemmat’s Professor Mohammed Farid   Professor Farid often depicts the pressure exerted in high pressure processing visually, as two elephants standing on a coin. The Ministry for Primary Industries recently approved the use of high pressure...

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Celebrating the career of Professor John Chen

Celebrating the career of Professor John Chen

On 15 July 2019, staff members and friends came together to celebrate the career of Professor John Chen, and wish him all the best for his retirement years commencing 1 Aug 2019. Current Head of Department Associate Professor Ashvin Thambyah welcomed guests and gave a...

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Chemmat – well presented at Cambridge

Chemmat – well presented at Cambridge

In May we had a visit from Chemmat graduate Reece Oosterbeek, who is in the midst of an exciting PhD program at Cambridge University. Reece received a prestigious Woolf Fisher scholarship to undertake doctoral studies at the Department of Materials Science and...

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A great outcome from MIT

A great outcome from MIT

Congratulations to Dr Geran Zhang – Chemmat grad who completed a PhD at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Geran visited the department in May with the good news that he has not only completed his PhD at MIT, where he was on a full scholarship...

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Chemmat Mixer 2019 – Shadows

Chemmat Mixer 2019 – Shadows

Each year the department ‘facilitates’ a mixer, organised by the Year Three students, that brings both staff and students of the department for an evening of casual mixing. The aim of this annual event is to foster a sense of collegiality and camaraderie amongst all...

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Urbanaut Brewery Tour

Urbanaut Brewery Tour

By Thomas Chong, CHEMMAT student On the 10/5/2019, the groovy crew of CMESA visited the Urbanauts Brewery for a day of “educational” sampling and exposure to what a chemical and materials engineering degree can offer. After the overwhelmingly positive response from...

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Goals of Chemmat’s Teaching & Learning Committee

Goals of Chemmat’s Teaching & Learning Committee

Chemmat’s Teaching and Learning Committee, chaired by A/P Peng Cao,  is working to achieve Chemmat’s strategic goals relating to teaching and learning. In order to reduce the number of red-flagged courses, the Committee is working closely with...

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Autumn Graduation – 6 May 2019

Autumn Graduation – 6 May 2019

The department enjoyed celebrating the success of our graduates, both undergrad and postgrad, as they marched onto stage at the Aotea Center to collect their hard-won certificates. All the best to all graduates!

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Students visit Methanex

Students visit Methanex

On Thursday, 21 and Friday, 22 March a group of 56 students and three staff from the University of Auckland visited Methanex NZ Ltd to provide practical experience on a live plant.  This visit is organised every year by Robert Kirkpatrick and Harvey Weake who are both...

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Postgraduate News

Postgraduate News

Post Graduate Lunch The department hosted our post-graduate students to a modest lunch. This was an opportunity for the diverse groups of PG students to mix and mingle, together with staff, and build collegiality.     Persian New Year Nowruz or Persian New Year...

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Chemmat’s ‘Research Impact Day’

Chemmat’s ‘Research Impact Day’

On the 26th of February 2019, the department held a workshop among academic staff members to generate and capture group discussions on (1) Traditional forms of research impact, and (2) Non-traditional forms of research impact. This whole-day workshop was held at the...

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TMS Conference

TMS Conference

Peng Cao attended the 148th TMS Annual Meeting held in San Antonio, USA, from March 10 – 14, 2019. He presented an invited talk in the “Solidification Processing of Light Metals and Alloys: An MPMD Symposium in Honor of David St John”. During the four-day conference,...

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Chemmat alumni sworn in as National MP

Chemmat alumni sworn in as National MP

Congratulations to 1990’s Chemmat alumni Agnes Loheni for having been sworn in as a National list MP. Click here to read Agnes’s Wikipedia page and here to read her parliamentary...

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Meet the researchers: A self-healing solution for battery tech

Meet the researchers: A self-healing solution for battery tech

Battery technology is a science hot-spot around the world. Multimillion-dollar research companies in the United States, China, Japan and Europe are racing to find the next big capacity boost to overtake the current front-runner – lithium-ion batteries. In New Zealand,...

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PacSurf – Waikoloa, Hawaii

PacSurf – Waikoloa, Hawaii

Chemmat’s Senior Lecturer, Dr Jenny Malmström was invited to speak in the biomaterial surfaces and interfaces session at the Pacific Rim Symposium of Surfaces, Coatings and Interfaces. The conference was held at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa,...

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Conference on Micro & Nanotechnology in Medicine

Conference on Micro & Nanotechnology in Medicine

The IEEE EMBS fourth biennial Conference on Micro and Nanotechnology in Medicine was held in Kauai, Hawaii from 10-14 December 2018. Chemmat’s Head of Department, Assoc Prof Ashvin Thambyah attended the meeting at which the “biomedical grand challenges facing our...

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End-of-year Part IV presentations (2018)

End-of-year Part IV presentations (2018)

Chemmat students and staffEach year the department offers approximately 70 research projects to our Part IV students. Each student conducts his/her independent research under the supervision of a staff member. Some of the projects are part of large research...

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Dr Jenny Malmström features in top journal

Dr Jenny Malmström features in top journal

International journal Biointerphases has released a special issue highlighting women in Biointerface Science. Chemmat’s Senior Lecturer, Dr Jenny Malström features on the cover with other international researchers. The editorial showcases the careers of these women...

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Chemmat’s funding successes

Chemmat’s funding successes

Engineering research at the University of Auckland attracted more than $2M in funding from 2018’s Marsden Fund, a significant increase over 2017. Congratulations Assoc Prof Peng Cao, Dr Shanghai Wei and Prof Mark Taylor for their research grant wins: –         ...

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PhD student Andy Zhang wins best poster

PhD student Andy Zhang wins best poster

Congratulations Chemmat PhD student, Hongzhou (Andy) Zhang (supervised by Assoc Prof Peng Cao) for winning best poster prize at the 2018 World Congress on Powder Metallurgy. The conference was held in Beijing, China from 16-20 September, 2018. When asked about the...

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Prof Brent Young chairs discussion at the business school

Prof Brent Young chairs discussion at the business school

The Food and Health Programme and University of Auckland Business School’s Graduate School of Management co-hosted a visiting group of 25 MBA students from Stanford University, USA in December 2018. The visiting students were in New Zealand to understand how...

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FOMA

FOMA

The Federation of Māori Authorities (FOMA) held its 31st annual conference in Gisborne, from 2-3 November, 2018. FOMA is an organisation that was established in 1987 and provides the voice of Māori businesses to government and other authorities. Each year FOMA gathers...

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