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Prof Andrew Slark is an EPSRC Manufacturing Fellow in the Department of Chemistry, University of Sheffield. He has over 25 years’ R&D experience (ICI, National Starch, Henkel & De La Rue) developing new polymer technology and products for various adhesives and coatings applications - including automotive, construction, textiles and packaging. He was awarded a £1.5M EPSRC Manufacturing Fellowship in 2018 (I-CARE) and is investigating new polymers to enable the recycling, re-use and remanufacture of valuable materials. Being experienced in both polymer chemistry and physical polymer science, he is skilled at designing new polymers by correlating polymer structure with basic material properties and application performance.

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Smart Polymers with Advanced Properties

The EPSRC Fellowship - Innovative Coatings and Adhesives for Recycling (I-CARE), is targeting new, smart polymers which not only provide high performance in use, but which can also be triggered to enable re-use and recycling.

More broadly we aim to design polymers with controllable intermolecular forces (non-covalent and covalent interactions) in the bulk or at surfaces and interfaces.

We are currently designing polyesters, polyurethanes and acrylics and interested in controlling their rheological, thermal, mechanical, and interfacial behaviour. We are targeting the design of low molecular weight prepolymers, multifunctional crosslinkers, thermoplastics and crosslinked networks.

Industrial Relevance

A key strength is linking polymer chemistry with material science and application requirements to break paradigms that exist. The concepts being explored are not only relevant to adhesives and coatings but also to films, elastomers and composites.

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