Biomaterials are derived from the meaning of materials that are in direct contact with living things. It can be defined as a substance that is used in close contact with a living body without adversely affecting the living body. Among the properties required as a biomaterial, an essential property is biocompatibility, and mechanical, physical properties and moldability are required depending on the purpose and purpose of use.

Biomaterials are used to replace damaged or dysfunctional human tissues and organs in direct contact with living tissues as a means of diagnosis, treatment and prevention of diseases. The use of biomaterials can be used for heart valves, artificial joints, surgical materials used in surgery, drug delivery systems (DDS), and organ transplants.

In this laboratory, we are conducting research on natural polymer-based biodegradable and biocompatible medical sealants, long-term adhesion expansion stents, and cell co-culture membrane materials as tissue adhesion materials.

2. Biodegradable polymer

Biodegradable polymers are chemically degradable. It is one of the types of polymers that are decomposed into natural by-products such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen, water, biomass, and inorganic salts.

As a recent issue, plastics that remain in the aquatic environment are decomposed into micro- or nano-sized plastics, which adversely affects marine life and sediments. Since these plastics are made of non-biodegradable synthetic polymers, biodegradable plastic materials in aquatic environments need to be developed. As a recent trend in Korea, biodegradable plastics are being studied by various companies. These research trends require sustainable development.

In this laboratory, we are conducting research on immobilization of hydrogels with biodegradable characteristics to control the release of marine organisms into the aquatic environment.

3. Soft materials

Flexible materials refer to soft materials. It is intermediate between a solid and a liquid, and the bonding energy between molecules is low, so it is a material that easily responds to external stimuli.

Flexible materials are commonly found in our daily life. These include toothpaste (gel), cosmetics (emulsion), shaving foam (foam), milk (emulsion), orange juice (suspension), colloids (colloids), and liquid crystals. Recently, the development of smart material, active material, programmable material, and soft robot using soft materials is being actively carried out.

In this laboratory, we are conducting research using a polymer hydrogel that contains an excess of moisture and forms a three-dimensional network. We are conducting research on the development and research of 3D printer systems using high-strength polyampholyte hydrogels, and studies on the uniformity of coating on concrete structures using the spray coating technique of nanocomposite hydrogels.

4. Environmental field

Recently, various solutions have been proposed as environmental pollution has become more severe, and various environmental materials are being studied a lot to overcome environmental pollution.

Materials made for human convenience are exposed to numerous natural environments, destroying and damaging nature. This is a situation that has come back to us humans and is having an adverse effect. As a result of various natural destruction, desertification caused by complex factors such as overgrazing, deforestation, environmental pollution, etc. There is this.

In this laboratory, we develop and apply superabsorbent polymer (SAP) to prepare for and recover from desertification, develop an absorbent that selectively absorbs oil in the aquatic environment due to an oil spill accident, and artificial sea to overcome the destruction of the ecosystem due to the decrease in the number of seaweeds. We are conducting research on the development of a forest formation system.

5. Surface-enhanced Raman scattering 

Developed cost-effective method to detect nanoplastics via Surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). Substrate detects sparkling nanoplastics; darkfield-based strategy allows single point detection. Point-by-point detection of single nanoplastics offers cost and time-saving benefits. Used to detect PP nanoplastics in lab equipment, PE nanoplastics in paper cup, and natural nanoplastics in seawater

6. Surface-enhanced Raman scattering Ag nanowires (AgNWs)  

This study used polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membranes for flexible substrates, Ag nanowires (AgNWs) to form nanopores, and PDMS-polyethylene glycol (PEG) block copolymer (BCP) to improve solvent application. The SERS substrates were able to detect rhodamine 6G (R6G) probes with a limit of detection (LOD) of 7.06 × 10− 11 M, and were mechanically stable under various conditions such as bending, stretching, and torsion. The nano-pores of the SERS substrates could separate polystyrene (PS) particles from the solution, and filtered particles were visually distinguishable from AgNWs using a dark field microscope. The flexibility of the SERS substrates also allows for swab sampling of irregular surfaces.