Welcome to The Institute for Polymer Research

Creative polymer science and engineering... Supporting industry in its search for excellence


Technological initiatives

Technological initiatives from the Institute for Polymer Research (IPR) have been instrumental in the development of better polymers for wire and cable applications, polymer modifications to make heat- and oil-resistant rubber, new polymer alloys and blends, systems for recycling polyolefin containers, the computer design of extrusion screws and dies and computer modelling and control of polymerization processes.

The Institute

The Institute carries out applied and fundamental research in areas that are of vital interest to the plastics, coatings, adhesives and elastomers industries. This includes work in such diverse fields as molecular weight characterization, thermal characterization, emulsion polymerization, polymer processing, polymerization kinetics, copolymerization, reactive extrusion, polymer-based catalysts, polymer photochemistry and development of new monomers and polymers.

Member firms in the Institute receive:

  • Two days of free consulting per annum by faculty members
  • Advanced research results before papers are published
  • Participation in Annual Symposium held in May
  • Membership on the IPR Industrial Advisory Council
  • Reduced rates on analytical and other research services
  • Priority on contract research

Intensive short courses

IPR also provides intensive short courses in Canada, USA, South America and Europe, or in-house for members firms.


IPR member, Professor Tizazu Mekonnen, was awarded the NOVA Chemicals sponsored Macromolecular Science and Engineering Division (MSED)  Early Career Instigator Award. 

This honour is bestowed upon researchers who have made substantial contributions to the polymer industry, aligning perfectly with Mekonnen's disruptive research in polymer engineering and sustainability.

Full article can be found here. 

Monday, January 15, 2024

2024 IPR Symposium

We are pleased to announce that this year's IPR Symposium will be a two-day event taking place on May 1-2, 2024 in E7 in 7303-7363. (For information about where to park please see map). 

The first day of the symposium will adopt the same format as in previous years with presentations given by IPR students and our two Keynote Speakers, Professor Alex Penlidis from the University of Waterloo and Dr. Steve Teertstra from Arlenxeo. Schedule for Day 1

Day two of the IPR Symposium will feature presentations from seven academic members of the IPR who will offer in-depth reviews of their research. Please follow this link to check the schedule and the list of covered topics.    

 Book of Abstracts  

Registration will open shortly.  For more information please contact Colleen Mechler (cmechler@uwaterloo.ca) or Jean Duhamel (jduhamel@uwaterloo.ca)