The winners of the Young Leather Scientist Awards 2020 have been announced. The IULTCS (International Union of Leather Technlogists and Chemists Societies) executive committee has published the names of the researchers that won the prize assigned by the entity for “the study of new technology to treat leather”. Three awards were given. The first for “basic research”, the second for the “study of new machinery and tools”, and the third for the “best research in the Sustainable and Environmental safety category”. Michael Meyer, president of IUR (International Union of Research Commission), highlighted how “the contest is becoming increasingly important. This sixth edition received many ambitious proposals, all aimed at furthering innovative ideas and sustainable technologies”.
Young Leather Scientist Awards 2020
The 1,500-euro prize was awarded to Megha Mehta, researcher at LASRA (New Zealand Leather and Shoe Research Association). Project work: “Investigating the structural differences of leather and hides throughout the different tanning phases”. Main objective: the use of 2 non-destructive techniques (Raman and Spectroscopy ATR-FTIR), to study the structural profiles of leather during the various phases of the process. In other words, this will allow everyone to study the changes that take place to the microstructure of the material during the process.
New machinery and tools
The 1,000-euro prize, on the other hand, was awarded by Erretre to Nilay Ork Efendioglu, researcher of the Leather engineering department of Ege Üniversitesi in Smirne (Turkey). Project work: “To determine the properties of leather needed to run 3D simulation programs, to obtain realistic visual representations”. The objective: apply or adapt leather’s characteristics to 3D visualization and other simulation programs. Thanks to this project, for example, operators will be able to define a plan to create a database of all different leather types for 3D simulation, useful in the product development phase.
Sustainability and Environmental safety
The last 1,000-euro prize by Leather Naturally went to Wenkai Zhang, another researcher at LASRA. The title of his project work is “the destiny of the biocides used in the leather industry and their impact on the environment”. In other words, investigate the biocides used in the leather industry and on their degradation products”.
In picture is Megha Mehta, winner of the contest