Materials News January 2021
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Welcome to the January 2021 alumni edition of the newsletter of the School of Materials Science and Engineering at UNSW Sydney - the top ranked Materials Science and Engineering School in Australia. 

We are always keen to also hear from our Alumni and receive contributions to the newsletter. If you would like to share news or your profile with us please email

In this issue:
Welcome from the Head of School
I am immensely grateful for the incredible support from staff, students and colleagues as we navigated through a very difficult year affected by bushfires and COVID-19.

Grant Success
The school had an incredible run of funding in the second half of 2020 which will ensure we continue with our world class research well into 2021 and beyond!

UNSW Professor Veena Sahajwalla will spearhead a new national research centre 
The Sustainable Communities and Waste Hub will be led by Australian Research Council Laureate Scientia Professor Veena Sahajwalla
Alumni Profile: Vicki Zhong
Vicki Zhong graduated from the School in 2019 with 1st Class Honours in Bachelor of Materials Science and Engineering (majoring in Ceramics Engineering) / Masters of Biomedical Engineering.

New Staff Profile: Scientia Senior Lecturer, Dr Tushar Kumeira
Our New Staff member Tushar Kumeira joins us as Scientia Senior Lecturer. He is an NHMRC Early Career Fellow with a research focus on porous nanomaterials.

Welcome to Dr Benjamin Pace
Welcome to our new academic Dr Benjamin Pace. Ben joins the school as an Education Focused Lecturer and has research interests in biomedical and energy material applications of thin films.

New breakthrough by the SMaRT Centre
A new breakthrough by the SMaRT Centre UNSW, promises a new recycling strategy for polymer-laminated materials like coffee pods, closing the loop on an important stream of waste!
ARC Postgraudate Council Student and Supervisor Awards
Congratulation to all of our winners in the ARC PGC Student and Supervisors Awards! Our student superstar Scarlet Kong was awarded the Outstanding Research Student Award, recognising her outstanding research and outreach contributions.
FLEET Outreach in the age of COVID-19
It was a hard year for hands on events, but this hasn't stopped a group of FLEET members delivering their outreach workshops to students in Emmanual Primary School!

Success in the Materials Australia Student Awards Competition
Congratulations to Bernadette Pudadera, Coco Kennedy and Aurpa Bhuiyan for placing first, second and third in the 2020 Materials Australia Student Awards Competition (NSW branch).

Farshid Pahlevani named in the list of Australia’s Most Innovative Engineers
Dr Farshid Pahlevani have been recognised in the list of Australia’s Most Innovative Engineers for 2020. The Australia's Most Innovative Engineers is an annual program run by create magazine.
Professor Chris Sorrell featured in Journal of Materials Science 1000 at 1000
Journal of Materials Science 1000 at 1000 Article Series Praises Findings in Highly Cited Article from Professor Sorrell and Dr. Hanaor.

Gaurav Vats awarded the 2020 Dean’s Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis
Gaurav has was awarded 2020 Dean’s Award for his outstanding PhD Thesis: in recognition of his PhD thesis Investigation of electrical, optical and mechanical control of ferroelectric domains using scanning probe microscopy.
PGSOC Friday Social
PGSOC organised lunch and activities for postgraduate students to bond and support their peers.

Our Medalist Undergraduate Study Experience
"My undergraduate degree in Materials Science Engineering at UNSW was an incredibly rewarding experience. Coming into a brand-new building with advanced lab equipment and study spaces was a huge bonus to kick-off university."
If you would like to share some news or contribute to the next edition please contact us at
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