Prof. Manjusri Misra's research featured in CEPS Annual Research Report 2022-2023


Professor Manjusri Misra's research on using coffee grounds and recycled plastics to create a biocomposites that can be used for rigid packaging and 3D printing applications was featured in the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences (CEPS) Annual Research Report 2022-2023.

A new life for waste plastics and coffee grounds

Today, about 400 million tonnes of plastic are produced annually, with roughly 80 per cent entering landfills or the natural environment. The primary contributor: single use plastics. Researchers have been investigating ways to turn recycled and waste plastics into new more sustainable products, such as biocomposites – a material made from combining plastics and a natural resource (like natural fibers).

In Canada, researchers are attempting to find new uses for an estimated 300,000 metric tonnes of used coffee grounds generated each year. Dr. Manjusri Misra, a professor in the School of Engineering, set out to develop sustainable biocomposites from coffee grounds. The coffee grounds were made into biocarbon and then combined with recycled plastics (water bottles and bale wrap) to produce a biocomposite. The evaluation of the biocomposites strength, durability and flexibility showed that the incorporation of biocarbon produced a biocomposite that demonstrated balanced properties for rigid packaging and 3D printing applications.

  • The team used spent coffee grounds collected at the U of G to create the biocarbon and collected bale wrap from local farms in their experiments.
  • The research successfully created biocomposites composed of 95 per cent sustainable input materials that have potential industrial uses, such as packaging and 3D printing applications, displacing fossil-based resources.
  • By utilizing recycled waste materials to produce biocomposites, this research is a significant step towards reducing our environmental footprint and achieving the global sustainable development goals.

For More Information, Visit CEPS Annual Report