The Search for Life (Science) in Engineering
USTAR Professor Randy Lewis Biology Department
Utah State University
Friday October 7
3:10 pm in CR 310
Prof. Lewis is an internationally renowned leader in researching and commercializing spider silk for engineering applications. Prof. Lewis isolated and described six different kinds of silk produced by orb-web weaving spiders while on the faculty in Molecular Biology at the University of Wyoming. Silk fibers exhibit very unique mechanical properties and can be stronger and more flexible that steel. However, uses of natural spiker silk were greatly limited by availability. After retiring from UW, Prof. Lewis joined the faculty at Utah State University as a USTAR Professor and has developed the technology to produce spider silk synthetically in quantities that make it very attractive for a variety of commercial applications.