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Chen, other UWGB professors earn research project grants

Bobby Vachon , News Writer
May 6, 2014
Filed under News

This year, UW-Green Bay has received two research grants from the UW-System for two projects.

The first was received by Nursing Chair Susan Gallagher-Lepak for her research and development of the Nursing diagnosis Clinical Support Tool. She and her colleague Heather Heardman earned a $49,000 grant for their efforts.

The second grant that was announced was for Associate Professor Franklin Chen, Natural and Applied Sciences, for his project titled “Chemically modified waste paper for biopolymer based soil conditioner as a replacement for petroleum based soil conditioner for lawn and garden products.”

“I was very happy to hear about the award,” Chen said. “It was non-stop work with lots and lots of writing.”

Chen’s research was directed at current lawn care products and their reliance on petroleum-based products, which are highly toxic and degrade the condition of the topsoil.

His research looked for a polymer to replace petroleum and be more environmentally friendly.

Chen said he received help from two other faculty members and one UWGB alumnusww on this project.

“Not only is this project a good opportunity for me but good opportunity for my colleagues, the courses I teach and alumnus,” Chen said.

The focus on replacing the petroleum based polymers with a more environmentally friendly to help the condition of the topsoil is a project in which Chen has been working on for some time now.

Chen’s experience with working in the paper industry in the past has given him some insight into using polymers for the paper industry that are easier to break down. The success of this project could lead into other research projects based around a similar concept.

The grant will be used to help continue other research projects. Chen said research takes a lot of money and time to keep everything running.

He also said on the fact UWGB received two different UW-System grants this year is quite an accomplishment.

”They are very difficult to get,” Chen said. “It tells a lot about UWGB. We really do have world-class education here and I want every student to believe that.”