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We prepare students for successful careers as technical, scientific and management leaders.

We prepare students for successful careers as technical, scientific and management leaders.

A Traditional Focus On Research

Strong fundamental science and engineering skills coupled with close ties to industry and a desire to expose students to real-world problems have inspired the Department of Forest Biomaterials at NC State University (FB) to place a premium on original research for over 50 years. Today, we maintain internationally renowned research programs in the areas of wood products, paper science and engineering and the emerging area of forest biomaterials. These programs call on a number of research strengths unique to FB:

  • Our faculty is devoted to original research and to engaging students in that research. Review our Faculty By Research Area section for more information on current faculty initiatives.
  • Our research equipment and facilities are state-of-the-art and include major laboratories devoted exclusively to the study of biomaterials, bioenergy, paper science and engineering and sustainable materials.
  • BioResources is an internationally recognized open access journal founded by NCSU FB faculty that examines the emerging field of biomaterials and their potential uses.
  • We have established research partnerships with other departments at NC State and outside organizations to examine key industry and environmental issues. Check out our Research Centers for more information on these on-going research efforts.
  • We call on NC States proprietary strengths in new technologies and frequently work with the NC State Biotechnology team, the College of Engineering and other departments in examining uncharted areas related to our fields. NC State’s strength as a leader in nanotechnology and other 21st Century sciences contributes to our ability to push the envelope of research.

Our Research Mission

FB create fundamental science and applied engineering solutions creating new knowledge and results that benefit partners interested the biomaterials, bioenergy, pulp and paper industry, wood products and allied industries. FB is also dedicated to developing futuristic products and new processes that derive sustainable value from nature in an environmentally responsible way. For example, recent research projects in the areas of forest biomaterials, bioenergy, pulp and paper and sustainable wood materials include:

 

Biomaterials

  • Production of Chemicals from Sugars and Lignin
  • Novel Soy based Surfactants
  • Fundamental Insights into Nanocellulose Production and Properties
  • A Fundamental Understanding of Cellulose and the Effects of Mechanical and Enzymatic Treatments
  • Polysaccharide Based Films and Foams
  • Cellulose Based Plastics and Fibers
  • Nanocellulose for Stabilized Surfactants
  • Value Added Lignin Products
  • Development of Cellulose Based Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering
  • A Method to Measure Cellulose Degree of Polymerization
  • Uses for Banana Stem Fibers in Absorbent Systems
  • Characterization of Non-woody Lignin and the Impacts for Enzyme Hydrolysis
  • Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy and its Use to Characterize Cellulosic Materials
  • Biorefinery Lignin as Stabilizers in Emulsions for Power Generation
  • Feasibility Study for Green, Biobased Reactive Sorbent Materials for Neutralization of Chemical Warfare Agents
  • Production and Characterization of Inexpensive Renewable Hydrogels for Desalination and Heavy Metal Removal

Bioenergy

  • Improved Production of Wood Fuels
  • A Fundamental Understanding of Cellulose and the effects of Mechanical and Enzymatic Treatments
  • Adding Value to Non-wood Bioethanol Production
  • Integrated Modeling of Supply Chain, Financial and Life Cycle for Biofuels
  • Integrated Biomass Supply Systems
  • Fundamental Studies of Enzyme Hydrolysis
  • Opportunities for Bioenergy Exports
  • Characterization of Non-woody Lignin and the Impacts for Enzyme Hydrolysis
  • Paper Fiber Mat wetting Agents
  • Modeling Low Energy Biofuel Production Systems
  • Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy and its Use to Characterize Cellulosic Materials
  • A Process Model for an Innovative Biorefinery
  • Treatments for Enhanced Enzymatic Hydrolysis
  • Biorefinery Lignins as Stabilizers in Emulsions for Power Generation
  • Renewable Hydrocarbon Fuels from Fast Pyrolysis Oils
  • Wood to Ethanol Research Consortium I
  • Wood to Ethanol Research Consortium II
  • Biofuels from US Hardwoods
  • Life Cycle and Technoeconomic Analysis of Biomass Pretreatment Alternatives
  • Integrated Biorefinery

Paper Science

  • Use of Soy Proteins to Enhance Paper Properties
  • Bamboo and Non-woody Plant Fibers for New Materials
  • Soy Protein for Control of Tacky Deposits
  • A Method to Measure Cellulose Degree of Polymerization
  • Characterization of Non-woody Lignin and the Impacts for Enzyme Hydrolysis
  • Uses for Banana Stem Fibers in Absorbent Systems
  • Paper Fiber Mat Wetting Agents

Sustainable Materials and Technology

  • Secondary Wood Products Business-to-Business Connections
  • Development of Solid and Hollow Core Cross Laminated Timber Panels
  • Value Added Lignin Products
  • Genetic Engineering and Bioproducts: A Psychometric Study of Market Sensitivity
  • Opportunities for Bioenergy Exports
  • The Resilient Home
  • Biofuels from US Hardwoods
  • Reinventing the Hardwood Markets using Local Channels

Our goal is to remain among the top research programs in our fields, both in terms of the quality of our scholarly outputs and in the education and development of graduate student and postdoctoral associates who are needed to transform these industries in the years ahead.