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Seminar from Professor Malcolm Mackley

Cambridge CARES was treated to an entertaining and thought-provoking talk by Emeritus Professor Malcolm Mackley, of Cambridge University, on Thursday afternoon. The title of Professor Mackley’s talk was “unexpected outcomes from curiosity and technology driven science in the field of polymeric materials and process engineering”. 30 researchers and students attended the presentation.

Prof. Mackley noted the diversity of research at CARES, and there was something for everyone in the seminar. Topics ranged from insights into the positives and pitfalls of new technologies to the surface tension of tomato sauce. We were given a behind-the-scenes look into some of Prof. Mackley’s earlier experiences in polyethylene development, along with details of his collaborations with research groups around the world.

Attendees also had the chance to hear about some recent innovations using plastics. These included the development of a strong, flexible and transparent polyethylene film and cancer detection using fluoropolymer micro capillary film technologies.

We were left with words of wisdom as Prof. Mackley affirmed the importance of making mistakes and reminded us to look out for the unexpected discoveries that often come from doing good science, whether it’s driven by technology or pure curiosity.

Prof. Mackley joined Cambridge University’s Department of Chemical Engineering in 1979, where he researched and lectured on polymers, process innovation and rheology. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and an Emeritus Fellow of Robinson College, Cambridge.

This was part of a series of seminars from visiting scientists. Keep an eye on our news and events page for upcoming presentations. They are free and open to all.

Photo credit: Dr Samad Solbai

11 December 2017