Prof. Stefan Mecking Delivers Dr RA Mashelkar Endowment Lecture

Prof. Stefan Mecking, Chair of Chemical Materials Science, University of Konstanz, delivered Dr RA Mashelkar Endowment Lecture on “Recyclable and Degradable Polyethylene-like Material Enabled by Catalytic Methods” on 14 December 2023 at CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory (CSIR-NCL), Pune.

Organised by the NCL Research Foundation and CSIR-NCL, the Dr RA Mashelkar Endowment Lecture series marked its 78th edition with Prof. Mecking’s fantastic oration. The series, named after the distinguished scientist Dr RA Mashelkar, aims to foster knowledge exchange and promote groundbreaking research in the field of chemical science.

In his address, Prof. Mecking shed light on the global significance of plastics, with over 400 million metric tons produced annually. He emphasised the growing role of polymers in diverse sectors, including energy, mobility, communication, and healthcare. He delved into the current challenges facing polyethylene recycling, discussing the persistent nature of the material and the technological hurdles involved.

Prof. Mecking presented innovative approaches to address these challenges. His discourse covered additive manufacturing with polyethylene-like polymers, closed-loop recycling of polyethylene-like polymers, production of polyesters from plastic waste, utilisation of waste polyethylene as feedstock, advancements in polyketones, etc. The lecture concluded with an exciting Q & A session. 

Earlier, Dr Suresh Bhat, Chair, Polymer Science and Engineering, set the stage with welcome remarks. Dr Samir Chikkali, Senior Principal Scientist, introduced Prof. Mecking, highlighting the significance of his research in the pursuit of sustainable materials.

Dr Suresh Bhat felicitated Prof. Mecking with a memento and a book.