Early days

The founding board of the EPSRC Interdisciplinary Research Centre in Polymer Science & Technology, 1989: back row to front row, left to right:

Prof Robin Harris (Durham), Dr Geoff Davies (Leeds); Bill Colwell (Commercial Manager);

Dr Phil Coates (Bradford), Prof Eric McIntyre (Leeds), Dr David Bower (Leeds), Dr Alan Duckett (Leeds);

Prof Jim Feast (Durham), Prof Ian Ward (Director, Leeds), Prof Tony Johnson (Bradford).

The IRC commenced on 1 October 1989.  

The principal objectives were:

1. To establish a recognised focal point for the future development of polymer science and technology in the UK.

2.   To provide a more effective interface between academic research and industrial research in polymer science and technology in the UK.

3. To produce a more substantial flow of polymer scientists and technologists.

New Projects were initiated:

1. The Synthesis, Characterisation and Application of Dendritic Polymers

2. Designed Networks

3. Electroactive Polymers:

    (a) Ionic Transport in Polymers

    (b) New Piezo and Pyroelectric Polymers

4. Polymerisation Scale-up – Block Copolymers and Telechelic Polymers from Living Polymerisations. 

5. Novel Liquid-Crystal Polymers.

6. Polymer Composites:

    (a) Mechanical Behaviour of new High Temperature Composites

    (b) Lightweight High Energy Absorbing Composites

    (c) High Temperature Low Cost Polymer Composites

7. Polymer Process Modelling, Measurement and Control:

    (a) Solid Phase Deformation processing

    (b) Polymer Fluid Processing