Greener Solutions


The Greener Solutions program is project based class that partners students with companies, non-profits, and/or government agencies interested in promoting the adoption of more sustainable chemistry. Every year we recruit teams of graduate students and advanced undergraduates to work closely with one of our partner organizations on an interdisciplinary projects that leverages students knowledge in a real-world context. Learn more about our current and past projects below.



 FALL 2014


2014 Class Flyer

We are now accepting applications for the 2014 class

Click here to download the Fall 2014 application (due May 30, 2014)

This fall we will be partnering with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control, Safer Consumer Products branch to investigate the human and environmental health consequences of current technology. We will also be partnering with the Biomimicry Institute to look to biologically inspired designs to find what else is possible

We are also developing a 2-unit seminar continuation for Spring semester, 2015 called Greener Solutions Translation. Students who participate in the fall course can opt to continue in Greener Solutiosn Translation, a seminar in which students will translate the teams' findings for a variety of audiences, polishing communication skills, and investigating subsequent research and development steps.


FALL 2013


We partnered with Levi Strauss &Co. and Biomimicry 3.8 to identify and evaluate potential biomimetic approaches to fabric finishing that would eliminate the use of formaldehyde and diisocyanates.  Students worked alongside industrial partners to identify the most promising replacement materials and have identified a number of inherently less hazardous approaches to fabric finishes which will need to be tested in the lab.  

Click here to download slides from the final presentation.

Summary Report Team 1

Summary Report Team 2


FALL 2012


During the fall of 2012 we partnered with Hewlett Packard and the Department of Toxic Substance Control on a project related to the informal e-waste recycling sector. An interdisciplinary team of students from Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Environmental Science and Public Health worked with scientist at HP to characterize the processes and emissions from common e-waste recycling practices. This information informs changes to the design of consumer electronics that minimize the use of harmful substances, as well as identifying emerging contaminated from newer generations of electronics. The student team produced a comprehensive report for HP which they presented to the materials division in December. They will be presenting the report to an international HP audience in May.

Course Syllabus`12

Greener Solutions Flyer`12

Greener Solutions Application `12


Final Report: Identifying substances of concern during informal recycling of electronics 

Watch the full final presentation here.