Through close cooperation between the School of Product Design at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand and Biomimetics, Biological Materials Group at the HSB City University of Applied Sciences Bremen, it has been possible, in collaboration with the company CORDENKA GmbH & Co. KG, to launch a UC Connect doctoral scholarship.
The “CORDENKA® fibre centred product design” scholarship is jointly awarded by the University of Canterbury and CORDENKA GmbH & Co. KG, Obernburg, Germany, to support scholarship holders on their way to a PhD at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand.
History of the UC Connect Doctoral Fellowship: The fellowship was established by the University of Canterbury in 2014 to promote collaboration between university research groups and external companies at the doctoral level.
Professor Jörg Müssig from HSB and Dr Tim Huber from UC have proposed the concept for a joint research project between CORDENKA, HSB and UC to develop new high quality/performance materials from the cellulose-based CORDENKA® fibre through material-centred product design. “Material-centered product design is a subcategory of industrial product design, which aims to develop new products from a specific material”, Dr Huber describes the approach to the project.
The project will include a detailed analysis of CORDENKA® fibres and CORDENKA® fibre composites to document the physio-chemical properties of the identified materials and to test and analyze the processing conditions. “We are also particularly interested in investigating the perception of the material by potential end-users. In this context, we are also driven by questions of improved sustainability, material texture and/or haptic design”, explains Professor Müssig
“The use of bio-based CORDENKA® fibres enables the production of sustainable materials with interesting features,” says project manager Dr Daniel Lang of CORDENKA. “This results in a large number of material combinations, for which the focus has so far been on properties such as impact strength, especially at low temperatures, biodegradability and fatigue strength. However, the project will shed light on other facets as well. We are pleased to support such an application-oriented and diverse doctoral project.”
The project aims to develop a wide range of previously unknown possibilities for the use of CORDENKA® fibres and CORDENKA® fibre composites in product design. The data collected will allow assessing the feasibility of the ideas developed and to determine which ideas have the potential to be developed into the most promising concepts. Product prototypes of the identified concepts will then be developed and these prototypes will be tested for their physio-chemical properties and customer response in order to find the most suitable product for possible commercialisation.
This project can now be carried out through the UC Connect PhD grant and the funding of CORDENKA in the form of a joint doctoral project under the leadership ofDr Tim Huber and Professor Jörg Müssig and a member of the R&D team of CORDENKA. The scholarship holder will be enrolled as a PhD student at the University of Canterbury and will be supervised by Dr Tim Huber and Professor Jörg Müssig. It is planned that parts of the research work will also be carried out at the HSB.
Further information on how to apply for the UC Connect PhD scholarship ” CORDENKA® fibre centred product design” can be found here
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörg Müssig
HSB – Hochschule Bremen, City University of Applied Sciences
Faculty 5, Biomimetics, The Biological Materials Group
Dr Tim Huber
School of Product Design, University of Canterbury