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Chairholder Profile

Dominic Thibeault

Dominic Thibeault

OLEOTEK
Cégep de Thetford

Chair Title

NSERC Industrial Research Chair for Colleges in Renewable Thermoset Resin Development for the Composite Industry

Chair Program

Industrial Research Chairs Program

Role

 since 2016

Summary

The polymer and composite industry is facing significant challenges. The composite materials industry continues to depend on petrol and is strongly affected by the price fluctuations of raw materials. Moreover, a number of players in the industry are concerned about health and environmental restrictions, both present and future, which are becoming increasingly stringent. Thermoset resins involve chemistry that has not changed since its introduction in the middle of the 20th century. These petrochemical resins, made from non-renewable sources that pose health and environmental risks, are only very rarely substituted with greener or safer materials.

This industrial research chair focuses on developing new thermoset resins that are made with renewable materials and pose less health and environmental risks. My career path in chemistry has led me to work in two fields of expertise: renewable materials and polymers. We have demonstrated that epoxy and vinyl ester resins can easily be made using renewable materials. In fact, through a research program on bioplastics funded by an Innovation Enhancement Grant from NSERC’s College and Community Innovation Program (CCI-IE), researchers from OLEOTEK and CTMP, a centre for mineral and plastics technologies, recently developed a patent-pending vinyl ester resin made with renewable materials and without styrene. This new resin could be composed of over 95% renewable materials thanks to new biotechnologies. Another CCI-IE research program at the Cégep de Thetford, focused on oleochemistry, helped develop synthesis methods and identify important targets in the field of renewable epoxies. The knowledge from these two research programs paved the way for this industrial research chair.

These new resins will have many impacts on many levels in the community, starting with the industrial partners, who will be able to target new markets in the transport, energy, and infrastructure sectors. Composite materials manufacturers will also be one of the first to benefit from this research, given that the products developed will replace conventional resins. Moreover, the greener composite materials will benefit direct and indirect users. Industries will use the unique products to enter new markets and generate new economic activity. Knowledge acquired through the program will serve the current industry and future generations and position Canada to become a world leader in this rapidly expanding field. This is a forward-thinking chair that predicts the materials of tomorrow before legislative pressures, the price of non-renewable materials, and increasingly limiting social licences force the composite materials industry to make drastic changes.

Partners

  • Kruger inc.
  • Pultrusion Technique Inc.
  • Sanexen Services Environnementaux Inc.
  • Produits chimiques CCC Ltée
  • BHS Composites Inc.

Contact Information

OLEOTEK
Cégep de Thetford
835 Mooney Street West
Thetford Mines, Québec
G6G 0A5

Tel.: 418-338-1318, ext. 222
Fax: 418-338-1338
Email: dthibeault@oleotek.org

Website:
This link will take you to another Web site http://www.oleotek.org