bioplastic investigations: making and shaping new polymers

kate whittaker, donna cleveland, frances joseph

school of future environments, AUT

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ABSTRACT

Bio fabrication, the associated manufacturing processes (or Living Labs) and the advancement of the ‘fourth industrial revolution’ are set to change the worlds use of non-renewable, extracted resources. They are increasingly being used to reduce the problem of plastic waste that is suffocating the planet and contaminating the environment. Some advantages of bioplastics include; reduced carbon footprint, energy savings in production, use of -renewable raw materials, reduction of non-biodegradable waste, and the reduction of harmful additives.  In New Zealand there is a growing interest in the development of new sustainable materials to replace plastics. This seeding project built on emerging capability in the areas of textile design and additive manufacturing, to investigate the development of new biomaterials. Using a practice based, experimental methodology the research identified material and fabrication strategies that have the potential for sustainable packaging and product applications.

wHO AM I?

Kate Whittaker is a textile designer who specializes in digital textile creation and manipulation and is currently completing her Master of Creative Technology at AUT. Her Master's project has been created to allow for the development of digital knit within interactive and fiber art. The research explores the aesthetic potential of tactile and sensory materials to stimulate engagement and memory. Kate is extremely passionate about the development of the way that people interact with textiles and how that affects the imagination and is excited to see where the future takes her research.

 

Dr Donna Cleveland is a senior lecturer and researcher with the School of Future Environments, at Auckland University of Technology, in New Zealand. Her research engages with innovative design led strategies, interdisciplinary practice, sustainability and designing for systems change. Her areas of expertise include smart textiles application and fabrication, sustainable fashion and textiles design, and developing more effective systems of fashion textiles waste management. Her passion lies in sustainable design education and the fusion of traditional applications with emerging technologies, such as e-textiles to redefine design possibilities.

 

Frances Joseph is Professor of Material Futures in Huri te Ao, the School of Future Environments, and Director of the Textile and Design Lab at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. She studied visual art at the University of Tasmania, majoring in sculpture, and worked professionally as an artist and designer for puppetry and large scale public performances. Frances has an MFA from the University of New South Wales and a PhD from Auckland University of Technology. Her research focus on materiality and textility includes areas of intra-active textiles, biomaterials, innovation and material ecologies.Recent projects include ‘Phenomenal Dress,’ in collaboration with Miranda Smitheram (2017 - 2020); Mapping the New Zealand Wool Innovation Ecosystem (2019 - current);and Bioforming, with Donna Cleveland (2020-current). 

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