Grant: $354,478 - National Science Foundation - Jul. 6, 2009
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Award Description: The objectives of this project are to acquire the fundamental knowledge necessary to create in situ root based stabilization structures suitable for use in subsurface environments, and to test these structures for efficacy. Intact, in place root structures are to be chemically treated through polymer injections. Once created, these structures can be used in slope stabilization and erosion control applications without keeping the plants alive. Furthermore, these structures can be created without top soil removal. Root polymerization, imaging and soil stability testing activities will be used to answer key questions which include: (1) What chemical modifications are necessary to convert in situ living plant root tissues into functional non biodegradable soil stabilization structures? (2) What types of roots will work best for this application? And (3) How much stabilization benefit can be achieved with these types of structures? The research deals with biomimetic engineering. Biomimetics is the field of science that investigates biological structures for use in artificial systems. This is the first fundamental biomimetic study to focus on utilizing the benefits of the macro structure of modified roots for engineering applications. This work will have a major impact on applications that can benefit from adopting natural structures that have evolved to contact and stabilize soils. Broader impacts of this study are significant for educating historically underserved students. The research will be conducted at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), one of the largest Hispanic Serving Institutions in the nation offering undergraduate and graduate degrees to more than 28,500 mostly first generation college students from San Antonio and south Texas. UTSA has been one of the country?s fastest growing public universities for much of the last decade, providing access and opportunities for large numbers of historically underserved students.
Project Description: see abstract above
Jobs Summary: N/A (Total jobs reported: 0)
Project Status: Less Than 50% Completed
This award's data was last updated on Jul. 6, 2009. Help expand these official descriptions using the wiki below.