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David Goodwin (Fed)

Research Chemist

David G. Goodwin Jr., Ph.D. is a research chemist in the Engineering Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Goodwin conducts research in the Infrastructure Materials Group (IMG) of the Materials and Structural Systems Division (MSSD). He specializes in physical evidence collection and preservation in forensic investigations, surface analytical chemistry, spectroscopic techniques, electron microscopy, nanomaterial and polymer nanocomposite characterization, use of advanced weathering devices, and environmental chemistry.

Goodwin is currently the co-project leader of the Reliability of Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Composites (FRP) used in Buildings and Infrastructure”  project which consists of an interdisciplinary team of researchers with backgrounds in materials and structural systems. The project evaluates the durability and performance of FRP retrofits used for strengthening, repair, and seismic retrofit of civil infrastructure. Specifically, Goodwin assesses the durability of FRP bonded to concrete using accelerated laboratory studies (freeze/thaw and moisture exposure) and outdoor weathering studies in different climatic zones across the United States. Collaborative efforts are also underway to evaluate and develop field inspection test methods for FRP bonded to concrete. Goodwin is also involved in developing a full-scale, FRP-retrofitted structural component testbed for monitoring structural health and performance using new sensors and non-destructive testing technologies.

Goodwin deploys to the field to collect, document, and assess material performance following disasters. Recently, Goodwin deployed to Anchorage, AK following the 2018 Cook Inlet Earthquake and evaluated the post-seismic condition of FRP retrofits following a decade of outdoor exposure in a sub-arctic climate. Most recently, Goodwin deployed to the Champlain Towers South Condominium collapse in Surfside, FL, to lead the effort to document and tag physical evidence. Currently, he co-leads the Evidence Collection and Preservation project within the National Construction Safety Team (NCST) investigation.

As a research chemist, Goodwin also investigates the degradation of building materials, consumer plastics, and polymer nanocomposites during long-term ultraviolet weathering (i.e., simulated sunlight exposure) in the state-of-the-art NIST SPHERE. In the Circular Economy of Plastics project, Goodwin is involved in generating nano- and microplastics from weathered consumer plastic for use in analytical test method development and toxicity studies by other NIST researchers. Goodwin also develops spectroscopic metrologies to monitor cement hydration during 3D-printing of concrete structures.

Prior to NIST, Goodwin graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry from Lafayette College in 2010 and received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Johns Hopkins University in 2016. As part of his undergraduate degree, Goodwin conducted forensic chemistry research to determine the chemical mechanism of a preliminary color test used by police to identify cocaine. Goodwin’s Ph.D. work focused on microbial interactions with carbon nanotube/polymer nanocomposites and quantification of surface oxygen functional groups on carbonaceous nanomaterials. In 2018, Goodwin completed his National Research Council (NRC) Postdoctoral Associateship at NIST. His NRC postdoctoral research investigated the degradation of graphene and graphene oxide/polymer nanocomposites using the NIST SPHERE. During his NRC postdoctoral work, Goodwin also developed and applied unique test methods to assess graphene-family nanomaterial release from polymer nanocomposites during UV-weathering.

Goodwin is an advisory board member of the National Center for Transportation Infrastructure Durability and Life-Extension (TriDurLE), a US Department of Transportation funded research center. Goodwin is also a member of ACI committee 440, a member of the American Chemical Society (ACS), and a member of the Polymer, Surfaces, and Interfaces (PSI) Consortium between NIST and industry.

Postdoctoral Opportunities in the Infrastructure Materials Group:
NRC Postdoctoral Associateship Opportunity Regarding the Reliability of Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Composites (FRP) used in Buildings and Infrastructure.


Created October 1, 2019, Updated December 8, 2022