Duties listed are at the full performance level.
Serves as the Forest Service expert on initiating, planning, and conducting advanced bio-based composites research to manufacture advanced wood-based composites and on the product performances.
Performs reviews of available literature and prioritize which studies will provide the maximum benefit from the wood resources that are sustainably available. Plans, executes, and analyzes the highest priority studies. Specifies, designs, or purchases appropriate experimental apparatus to complete these studies.
Uses material science approaches to optimize processes, improve efficiency, and exploit opportunities for new advanced bio-based composites. Initiates and follows an integrated and multi-disciplinary approach that includes a reassessment of some of the following research areas: 1.) evaluating characteristics of lignin as a residual material and relate characteristics to the process from which it was derived; 2.) characterizing the small diameter and other forest thinning materials and engineering them into forms suitable for composites; 3.) determining the effects of processing conditions on the morphology and properties of cellulose nanofibers and their composites; 4.) determining which tools and characterization techniques are best suited for evaluating the properties of composite raw materials; 5.) developing composite processing methodologies that best uses constituent materials; 6.) developing models relating materials, processing, and performance; 7.) extending fundamental knowledge of the mechanisms of wood composite failure to ensure long-term durability (i.e., fire-, decay-, insect-, creep-, fatigue-, moisture-, and UV-resistance); 8.) developing, manufacturing, performance, and design standards for wood-based composites; 9.) evaluating the physical and mechanical properties of cellulose nanocomposites, especially for use in novel and advanced applications; 10.) improving the forest sustainability and reducing environmental impacts; and 11.) exploring new applications and transfer technology.
Completes research and transfers the research results through appropriate means (i.e. publications).
Participates in professional societies, serves on committees, arranges for, or participates in major technical conferences and programs. Provides service to the public on utilizing forest resources.
Creates work schedules, assigns priorities, and provides technical guidance to personnel within the Research Work Unit (RWU), and with other research and support groups on technical aspects of research projects, and ensures their timely completion. Works with the university faculty members to provide guidance and support to students and interns.