Academic work supports innovation

Brianna Knowles, Paint Coatings Innovation Officer, BlueScope ANZ, received an academic award from the University of Wollongong for her Bachelor of Chemistry Honours thesis. This work forms the foundation of an anti-fungal solution for COLORBOND® steel, which Brianna is continuing to pursue in conjunction with the University of Wollongong Innovation Hub.

“I was first exposed to the field of antifouling coatings while I was completing an undergraduate project in 2013,” says Brianna. “I have since completed my honours year and started my PhD project in the same field.

“My focus is not only on exploring different antifungal coatings but also on developing materials and methods that are feasible to be scaled up for industrialisation.

“So, when antifungal coatings are included in the manufacture of our products, they will look better for longer and will be able to function at their utmost efficiency, without suffering from a loss in functionality.

“I have been working with the Steel Research HUB program, which itself benefits from collaborations with the university and industrial partners who are leaders in their respective fields, working towards building knowledge and developing and understanding the systems we are making.

“It is an exciting field to be working in, and I feel very privileged to be part of this research team.”