Date of Thesis

Spring 2021


Interest in the development of shape memory polymer (SMP) technologies has risen due to their multifunctional abilities and numerous applications in a variety of industries. Shape memory elastomeric composites (SMEC) are polymeric composites that consist of a fiber phase, which enables shape fixing, and an elastomeric matrix that controls the shape recovery. The research leading to this thesis explored a new approach to reconfigurable shape memory elastomeric composites (Re-SMEC) by altering the roles of the individual phases to create an inverted shape memory elastomeric composite (i-SMEC). In our previous work on Re-SMEC materials, we demonstrated that reconfiguration of the matrix network enabled the customization of the target geometry during shape memory activation and that this occurred via dynamic covalent exchange between neighboring anhydride groups. These properties have been applied to a new type of shape memory elastomeric composite that is rooted with fibrous webs of thermoplastic elastomers and features a reconfigurable elastomeric polyanhydride (PAH) matrix with a novel geometry that can be controlled and manipulated thermomechanically. Contrary to traditional fiber-reinforced composites, where the fibrous phase temporarily fixes the geometry, this shape memory system utilizes the reconfigurable matrix for shape-fixing and elastic fibers as the memory retaining phase. The morphology, quantification of the mechanical properties, and the effect of fiber diameter on the shape memory abilities are reported


polymers, shape memory, biodegradable, fiber-reinforced composite

Access Type

Honors Thesis (Bucknell Access Only)

Degree Type

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering


Chemical Engineering

First Advisor

Patrick Mather