Packaging Researcher Honored

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Ragael Auras (view larger image)

Rafael Auras received the 2009-2010 College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Excellence in Teaching: New Teacher Award. The award was presented during the spring graduation ceremony for undergraduates in May.

His research focuses on sustainable packaging systems, life cycle assessment, carbon-neutral packaging, and the ability of packaging materials to biodegrade and be composted. His other research interests include mass and heat transfer in polymers, and food product/package compatibility and interaction. Auras is currently evaluating biodegradable polymers, especially for use as mulch on farms and in overwinter houses and transplant pots. He also is developing methods to improve understanding of how polymers degrade in soil and composting environments.

Auras came to MSU in 2000 as a Fulbright fellow in the School of Packaging. From 2002 to 2004, he was a research and teaching assistant and was then named an assistant professor. Auras received his doctorate in packaging from MSU in 2004, his master’s degree in materials science and technology from the National University of San Martin, Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1999, and his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the National University of Misiones, Argentina, in 1996.

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