David Son, Ph.D.

David Son joins the Hunt Institute as a Fellow, bringing his organic chemistry expertise. Son has been a professor in the Department of Chemistry at SMU since 1996. Dr. Son received his B.S. in chemistry from Andrews University (Berrien Springs, MI) and his Ph.D. in chemistry from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA). Dr. Son was a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at the Naval Research Laboratory (Washington, D.C.) before coming to SMU. Dr. Son conducts research on the synthesis of inorganic and organometallic polymers for a variety of applications including drug delivery, additive manufacturing, and aerospace. At SMU, Dr. Son has been awarded the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Award, the Thomas W. Tunks Distinguished University Citizen Award, and the ‘M’ Award. Dr. Son has also served as Faculty-in-Residence at Boaz Residential Commons since 2014. Dr. Son’s most recent project in the Global Development Lab is the Biodegradable Plastics Project, which shifted its focus to developing a 3D-printed biodegradable mask frame in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The frame is intended to be used in conjunction with surgical or cloth masks and provides the benefit of a more adequate seal to the face, while also posing a better environmental impact than most disposable PPE.

Dr. Son’s current project in the Global Development Lab is the Biodegradable Plastics Project, a collaborative effort with Hunt Fellow Dr. Paul Krueger in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Son is focusing on the preparation of biodegradable plastics that degrade at tunable rates, and that degrade into safe and environmentally-friendly products. A primary focus of this joint project is to address the problem of medical plastic waste.

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