Welcome to the Auras Lab homepage. On this site, you will find information about our team, the latest news, and a general description of the activities conducted by us.


Packaging enables the safe and effective distribution of foods, medicine, and other goods around the globe, which enhances and sustains life as we know it. As such, packaging systems are highly intertwined in the daily lives of individuals. Single-use packaging, however, becomes a waste product after use. Its disposal contributes to “white pollution” (i.e., accumulation in the environment of human-made materials, especially polymers). When proper disposal methods are not available or implemented, white pollution is a cause of environmental distress. As a society, we have directed significant efforts to optimize packaging along the value chain, such as improving value, reducing waste, and lowering the environmental footprint. But more is needed to achieve our recent sustainability worldwide goals. My research group has centered on developing sustainable packaging systems derived from renewable resources and mitigating the end-of-life effects of these systems. We have conducted research in mostly three areas: Developing novel biobased and biodegradable polymerstailoring polymer biodegradability, and designing sustainable packaging systems. In this site, you will find information about this research, but also information about our work in teaching and outreach. If you need further or specific information, please check the News feeds, and do not hesitate to contact me at aurasraf(at)msu.edu if you have any consultation. Rafael AURAS