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Personal profile

Research interests

Professor Trask is a member of the Bristol Composites Institutes (formly ACCIS), working in the field of Multifunctional Composites and Additive Manufacturing.

The focus of his research is directed towards the development of biologically inspired composite materials and structures, at the interface of engineering-chemistry-biological sciences, specifically targeted towards synthetic fibrous polymer composite materials in high performance applications. Nature has developed materials, objects and processes that function from the nanoscale to the macroscale. The aim of Professor Trask’s work is to mimic these systems to develop innovative and ingenious methods of adding functionality to advanced fibre reinforced polymer composite materials.

Current Research:

  • Additive Layer Manufacture of 4D materials and functionally graded multi-material composite systems
  • Biologically inspired design features and philosophies found in nacre for advanced body armour
  • Biomimicry of plantae vascules in the development of stimuli responsive self-healing composite structures.
  • Development of adaptive colour change camouflage (linked to Biological Sciences)
  • Hierarchical form and design strategies of Euplectella aspergillum (sea sponge) for structural efficiency and damage tolerance of airframe structures
  • Morphing structures using soft polymers for active camouflage based on the anatomical structure of cuttlefish papillae.

Postgraduate research student supervisor in the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Composites for Innovation and Science (ACCIS CDT)

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Research Output

  • 61 Article (Academic Journal)
  • 52 Conference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)
  • 10 Conference Paper
  • 1 Letter (Academic Journal)

Grand challenges in the design and manufacture of vascular self-healing

Qamar, I. P. S., Sottos, N. R. & Trask, R. S., 27 Feb 2020, In : Multifunctional Materials.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
11 Downloads (Pure)

4D printing with robust thermoplastic polyurethane hydrogel-elastomer trilayers

Baker, A. B., Bates, S. R. G., Llewellyn-Jones, T. M., Valori, L. P. B., Dicker, M. P. M. & Trask, R. S., 5 Feb 2019, In : Materials and Design. 163, 8 p., 107544.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 28 Citations (Scopus)
    391 Downloads (Pure)

    Compressive behaviour of 3D printed thermoplastic polyurethane honeycombs with graded densities

    Bates, S. R. G., Farrow, I. R. & Trask, R. S., 15 Jan 2019, In : Materials and Design. 162, p. 130-142 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 21 Citations (Scopus)
    360 Downloads (Pure)


    • 1 Fellowship awarded competitively

    EPSRC Fellowship - Engineering Fellowships for Growth - Morphogenesis Manufacturing: Smart Materials With Programmed Transformations.

    Richard S Trask (Recipient)

    1 Jun 20141 Jun 2019

    Activity: Other activity typesFellowship awarded competitively