U of MN ECEPS (Exploring Careers in Engineering and the Physical Sciences) Program

CSP researchers Debbie Schneiderman and Lindsay Davis (Summer student) lead 25 high school girls  in exploring the properties of absorbable and nonabsorbable medical sutures.  These students were participating in the CSE's Exploring Careers in Engineering and the Physical Sciences program (ECEPS).  The experiment has three modules:  1) students compare the threads or "sutures" that can be drawn from different molecular weights of polycaprolactone; 2) students test the tensile strength of different purchased medical sutures that are absorbable and non-absorbable; and 3) students observe their rate of degradation.  Topics of discussion included the importance of developing new plastics that will degrade in the environment.

Module 1 - Students melting caprolactone to pull into sutures
Lindsay Davis (CSP Summer Researcher), Jacob Kautzky (Heisig), Jane Wissinger (Professor), Cameron Ginochio (URS), Rosemary Olatunbasun (SEED)
Module 2 - Testing the strength of the medical sutures