Haskell Beckham
Haskell W. Beckham, Ph.D.
Principal Scientist
Polymer Science & Materials Chemistry
  • Atlanta

Dr. Beckham’s expertise includes polymers and textiles, organic and physical chemistry, fiber science, coloration, plastic degradation and stabilization, and material characterization. He is experienced in material design and development, patent analysis, testing of materials and test method development, material selection and formulation, and failure analysis. He has applied his expertise and experience to a broad range of issues related to plastics, adhesives, membranes, paints and coatings, stains and finishes, tires, porous polymers, foams, carpets, fabrics, fibers, nonwovens, cardboard, diapers and other absorbent materials, hydrogels, nanomaterials, food emulsions, food packaging, caulking and sealants, roofing materials, insulation, siding and other building components.

Dr. Beckham has authored book chapters and articles on topics related to polymers, textiles, and testing of materials. He has developed tests for wicking in fabrics for performance apparel, methods for evaluating filler dispersion in composites, ‘green’ dyes and finishes, smart fabrics, and test protocols for failure analysis of complex formulations. He has extensive experience with analytical tools and methods, in particular with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), that he has applied to characterize polymer structure and dynamics, formulations, fluids in absorbent materials, binding to cyclodextrins, antioxidants and UV stabilizers in plastics, and migration of moisture and plasticizers.

Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Beckham was a tenured full professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where for two decades he taught courses in polymers, textiles, chemistry and materials, and led a research program through which he trained graduate and undergraduate students, postdoctoral associates and visiting scientists. His current research interests include evaluation of polymers and textiles in consumer products, food packaging, agriculture, geosynthetics, aerospace, building and construction materials, medical devices, bioplastics and other biorenewables, industrial textiles, clothing for fire and arc flash protection, performance apparel, recreational and sports equipment for root cause and failure analysis, patent litigation support, product development and design support.

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • Ph.D., Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), 1991
  • B.S., Textile Chemistry, Auburn University, 1986
  • Outstanding Alumnus, Polymer and Fiber Engineering, Auburn University, 2011

    Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellowship, 2006

    Fiber Society Lecturer, 2006

    NSF CAREER Award, 1995

    NSF Research Initiation Award, 1994

    NSF NATO Fellowship, 1993

    Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship, 1992

    International SAMPE (Society for the Advancement of Material & Process Engineering) Student Award, first place Ph.D. category, 1991

    Auburn University Scholar, 1986

    Phi Eta Sigma, 1983

Publications

Xu B, Leisen J, Beckham HW. Nanoparticle dispersion in polymer nanocomposites by spin-diffusion-averaged paramagnetic enhanced NMR relaxometry: Scaling relations and applications. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 2014; 16:16790–16797.

Xu B, Leisen J, Beckham HW. Nanoparticle dispersion in polymer nanocomposites by spin-diffusion-averaged paramagnetic enhanced NMR relaxometry. Nanoscale 2014; 6 1318–1322.

Brown TR, Choudhury RP, Meree CE, Beckham HW, Kumar S, Shofner ML. Viscoelastic properties and structure of poly(acrylonitrile-co-methacrylic acid) polymer solutions for gel spinning at long aging times. Journal of Applied Polymer Science 2014; 131(3):39821.

Teuchert C, Michel C, Hausen F, Park D-Y, Beckham HW, Wenz G. Cylindrical polymer brushes by atom transfer radical polymerization from cyclodextrin-PEG polyrotaxanes: Synthesis and mechanical stability. Macromolecules 2013; 46: 2–7 (selected for issue cover).

Park D-Y, Kohl PA, Beckham HW. Anion-conductive multiblock aromatic copolymer membranes: structure-property relationships. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2013; 117(30): 15468–15477.

Guillot FM, Beckham HW, Leisen J. Hollow piezoelectric ceramic fibers for energy harvesting fabrics. Journal of Engineered Fibers and Fabrics 2013; 8(1): 75–81.

Yucelen GI, Kang D-Y, Schmidt-Krey I, Beckham HW, Nair S. A generalized kinetic model for the formation and growth of single-walled metal oxide nanotubes. Chemical Engineering Science 2013; 90: 200–212.

Leisen J, Gomez IJ, Roper JA, Meredith JC, Beckham HW. Spatially resolved solid-state 1H NMR for evaluation of gradient-composition polymeric libraries. ACS Combinatorial Science 2012; 14: 415–424.

Kang D-Y, Tong HM, Zang J, Choudhury RP, Sholl DS, Beckham HW, Jones CW, Nair S. Single-walled aluminosilicate nanotube/poly(vinyl alcohol) nanocomposite membranes. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 2012; 4: 965–976.

Simile C, Beckham HW. Permeability-saturation-capillary pressure relations in textile fabrics from an integrated upward-horizontal-downward wicking test. Journal of the Textile Institute 2012; 103(9): 945–951.

Xu B, Leisen J, Boehme U, Scheler U, Beckham HW. 1H NMR T1 Relaxation of polymer/montmorillonite nanocomposites with different clay contents and degrees of exfoliation: magnetic field effects. Zeitschrift für Physikalische Chemie 2012; 226(11-12): 1229-1242.

Yucelen GI, Choudhury RP, Leisen J, Nair S, Beckham HW. Defect structures in aluminosilicate single-walled nanotubes: A solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance investigation. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2012; 16: 17149–17157.

Yucelen GI, Kang D-Y, Guerrero-Ferreira C, Wright ER, Beckham HW, Nair S. Shaping single-walled metal oxide nanotubes from precursors of controlled curvature. Nano Letters 2012; 12: 827–832.

Owens TL, Leisen J, Breedveld V, Beckham HW. Validation of the integrated upward-horizontal-downward wicking test for providing intensive properties of textile fabrics. Journal of the Textile Institute 2012; 103(9): 952–959.

Choudhury RP, Lee JS, Kriegel RM, Koros WJ, Beckham HW. Chain dynamics in antiplasticized and annealed poly(ethylene terephthalate) determined by solid-state NMR and correlated with enhanced barrier properties. Macromolecules 2012; 45: 879-887.

Foston M, Hubbell C, Park D-Y, Cook F, Tezuka Y, Beckham HW. Surface modification by electrostatic self-assembly followed by covalent fixation. Angewandte Chemie 2012; 51: 1849–1852.

Bernardo G, Choudhury RP, Beckham HW. Diffusivity of small molecules in polymers: Carboxylic acids in polystyrene. Polymer 2012; 53: 976–983.

Lee JS, Leisen J, Choudhury RP, Kriegel R, Beckham HW, Koros WJ. Antiplasticization-based enhancement of poly(ethylene terephthalate) barrier properties. Polymer 2012; 53: 213–222.

Owens T, Leisen J, Beckham HW, Breedveld V. Control of microfluidic flow in amphiphilic fabrics. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 2011; 3(11): 3796–3803 (selected for issue cover).

Foston M, Beckham HW. Cyclic poly(dimethylsiloxane) via ring-closing dehydrocoupling of α,ω-dihydroxy-PDMS with α,ω-dihydrido-PDMS in dilute solution. Polymer 2010; 51: 2515–2519.

Foston M, Beckham HW. Cyclic poly(dimethylsiloxane) from kinetically controlled cyclodepolymerization of linear precursors in dilute solution. Polymer 2010; 51: 2112–2118.

Xu B, Leisen J, Beckham HW, Abu-Zurayk R, Harkin-Jones E, McNally T. Evolution of clay morphology in polypropylene/montmorillonite nanocomposites upon equi-biaxial stretching: A solid-state NMR and TEM approach. Macromolecules 2009; 42(22): 8959–8968.

Nam S, Leisen J, Breedveld V, Beckham HW. Melt dynamics of blended poly(oxyethylene) chains and rings. Macromolecules 2009; 42: 3121-3128.

Hubbell CA, Beckham HW, Cook FL. Reactive-ionic dyeing of films and fibers via ionic assembly and covalent fixation. AATCC Review 2009; 9(5): 43–47.

Leisen J, Schauss G, Stanley C, Beckham HW. Magnetic resonance imaging applications in textile and fiber engineering: fabrics and diapers. AATCC Review 2008; 8(5): 32–36.

Singla S, Beckham HW. Miscible blends of cyclic poly(oxyethylene) in linear polystyrene. Macromolecules 2008; 41(24): 9784-9792.

Nam S, Leisen J, Breedveld V, Beckham HW. Dynamics of unentangled cyclic and linear poly(oxyethylene) melts. Polymer 2008; 49: 5467-5473.

Leisen J, Beckham HW. Void structure in textiles by nuclear magnetic resonance I. Imaging of imbibed fluids and image analysis by calculation of fluid density autocorrelation functions. Journal of the Textile Institute 2008; 99(3): 243-251.

Neacsu V, Leisen J, Beckham HW, Advani SG. Use of magnetic resonance imaging to visualize impregnation across aligned cylinders due to capillary forces. Experiments in Fluids 2007; 42(3): 425-440.

Girardeau TE, Leisen J, Beckham HW. Chain dynamics of polyoxyethylene in nanotubes of a-cyclodextrin by solid-state 2H NMR. Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics 2005; 206(10): 998-1005 (selected for issue cover).

Leisen J, Sharaf MA, Beckham HW. Evolution of crystallinity, chain mobility and crystallite size during polymer crystallization. Macromolecules 2004; 37(21): 8028–8034.

Kolel-Veetil MK, Beckham HW, Keller TM. Dependence of thermal properties on copolymer sequence in diacetylene-containing polycarboranylenesiloxanes. Chemistry of Materials 2004; 16(16): 3162-3167.

Singla S, Zhao T, Beckham HW. Purification of cyclic polymers prepared from linear precursors by inclusion complexation of linear byproducts with cyclodextrins. Macromolecules 2003; 36(18): 6945–6948.

Leisen J, Hojjatie B, Coffin DW, Lavrykov SA, Ramarao BV, Beckham HW. Through-plane diffusion of moisture in paper detected by magnetic resonance imaging. Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 2002; 41(25): 6555–6565.

Beckham HW, Keller TM. Diacetylene-terminated diacetylene-containing polysiloxanes. Journal of Materials Chemistry 2002; 12(12): 3363–3365.

Leisen J, Beckham HW, Benham M. Sorption isotherm measurements by NMR. Solid-State NMR 2002; 22(2-3): 409–422.

Singla S, Beckham HW, Rezac ME. Localized chain mobility and gas transport properties of thermoplastic aromatic polymers. Journal of Membrane Science 2002; 208: 257–267.

Leisen J, Beckham HW, Hojjatie B, DW Coffin DW. In-plane moisture transport in paper detected by magnetic resonance imaging. Drying Technology 2001; 19(1): 201–208.

Lee HS, Carr WW, Leisen J, Beckham HW. Through-air drying of unbacked tufted carpet. Textile Research Journal 2001; 71(7): 613–620.

Karangu NT, Girardeau TE, Sturgill GK, Rezac ME, Beckham HW. Solution polymerization of an a,w-diethynyl diimide to a diacetylene-containing polyimide via oxidative coupling. Polymer 2001; 42(5): 2031–2037.

Lee HS, Leisen J, Beckham HW, Carr WW, Wepfer WJ. Factors influencing the air flow through unbacked tufted carpet. Textile Research Journal 2000; 70(10): 876–885.

Pschirer NG, Marshall AR, Stanley C, Beckham HW, Bunz UHF. Synthesis and characterization of poly[1,5-(3,7-di-tert-butyl)naphthyleneethynylene] by alkyne metathesis. Macromolecular Rapid Communications 2000; 21: 493–495.

Nagapudi K, Hunt J, Baker J, Shepherd C, Beckham HW. Synthesis, dynamic mechanical, and solid-state NMR spectroscopy of crown-ether-based aliphatic polyurethane rotaxanes. Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics 1999; 200: 2541-2550.

Nagapudi K, Leisen J, Beckham HW, Gibson HW. Solid-state NMR investigations of poly[(acrylonitrile)-rotaxa-(60-crown-20)]. Macromolecules 1999; 32: 3025–3033.

Leisen J, Carr WW, Warner S, Good J, Beckham HW. Magnetic resonance imaging of water ingress and distribution in fluorochemical-finished polyester cut-pile carpet. Textile Chemist and Colorist 1999; 31: 21-26.

Beckham HW, Carr WW, Fülber C, Spiess HW, Blümich B. Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging of water distributions in loop-pile nylon carpet tile. Journal of the Textile Institute 1998; 89(2): 436–440.

Karangu NT, Rezac ME, Beckham HW. Synthesis and properties of processable polyimides containing diacetylene groups. Chemistry of Materials 1998; 10:567–573. 

Rezac ME, Sorenson ET, Beckham HW. Transport properties of crosslinkable polyimide blends. Journal of Membrane Science 1997; 136: 249–259. 

Beckham HW, Reddy S, Desai P, Abhiraman AS, Kulik AS, Spiess HW. Structure and temperature-dependent properties of poly(4-methyl-1-pentene) fibers. Macromolecules 1997; 30:3293–3301. 

Thadani S, Beckham HW, Desai P, Abhiraman AS. Thermorheological consequences of crystalline-phase crosslinking in polyamide fibers. Journal of Applied Polymer Science 1997; 65: 2613–2622. 

Kulik AS, Schmidt-Rohr K, Radloff D, Beckham HW, Pawelzik U, Boeffel C, Spiess HW. Coupling of the α and Β Processes in Poly(ethyl methacrylate) Investigated by Multidimensional NMR. Macromolecules 1994; 27: 4746–4754. 

Beckham HW, Spiess HW. Phase-restricted radiation crosslinking in semicrystalline polyolefins investigated by two-dimensional solid-State NMR. Die Makromolekulare Chemie 1994; 195: 1471–1482. 

Schmidt-Rohr K, Kulik AS, Beckham HW, Ohlemacher A, Pawelzik U, Boeffel C, Spiess HW. Molecular nature of the Β Relaxation in poly(methyl methacrylate) investigated by multidimensional NMR. Macromolecules 1994; 27:4733–4745. 

Beckham HW, Rubner MF. On the origin of thermochromism in cross-polymerized diacetylene-functionalized polyamides. Macromolecules 1993; 26: 5198–5201. 

Beckham HW, Rubner MF. Structural Characterization of the cross-polymerization of a diacetylene-functionalized polyamide. Macromolecules 1993; 26: 5192–5197. 

Beckham HW, Rubner MF. Mechanical Properties of diacetylene-functionalized polyamides. polymer 1991; 32: 1821–1825. 

Gebizlioglu OS, Beckham HW, Argon AS, Cohen RE, Brown HR. A new mechanism of toughening glassy polymers. 1. Experimental procedures. Macromolecules 1990; 23: 3968–3974. 

Beckham HW, Rubner MF. Synthesis and optical properties of a new class of polyamides containing reactive diacetylene groups. Macromolecules 1989; 22: 2130–2138. 

Leisen J, Beckham HW. Quantitative comparison of wicking in performance fabrics. Proceedings of the Annual International Conference & Exhibition of AATCC, 2010. 

Beckham HW. Should high-tech fabrics require high-tech labeling? Proceedings, Annual International Conference & Exhibition of AATCC, pp. 252–254, 2006.

Selected Book Contributions

Beckham HW. Ring Polymers: Effective Isolation and Unique Properties. In: Complex Macromolecular Architectures: Synthesis, Characterization, and Self-Assembly. Hadjichristidis N, Tezuka Y, Hirao A, Du Prez F (eds), John Wiley and Sons, pp 791–821, 2011.

Leisen J, Beckham HW. Fluid Distribution and Movement in Engineered Fibrous Substrates by Magnetic Resonance Microscopy. In: Magnetic Resonance Microscopy: Spatially Resolved NMR Techniques and Applications. Codd S, Seymour J (eds), Weinheim: Wiley-VCH, pp. 399–419, 2009.

Leisen J, Hou L, Beckham HW, Carr WW. Observation of the Water Distribution during Drying of Textiles. In: Spatially Resolved Magnetic Resonance. Blümich B, Blümler P, Botto R, Fukushima E (eds), New York: Wiley-VCH, pp 265–272, 1998.

Beckham HW, Schmidt-Rohr K, Spiess HW. Conformational Disorder and its Dynamics within the Crystalline Phase of the Form II Polymorph of Isotactic Poly(1-butene). In: Multidimensional NMR, FT-IR/Raman, and Fluorescence Spectroscopy of Polymers. Urban M, Provder T (eds), ACS Symposium Series, pp 244–253, 1995.

Beckham HW, Spiess HW. Two-Dimensional Exchange NMR Spectroscopy in Polymer Research. In: NMR - Basic Principles and Progress, Vol. 32. Blümich B (ed), Berlin: Springer, pp 163–209, 1994.

Selected Invited Presentations

Beckham HW. Failure analysis of industrial fabrics and design for failure prevention. IFAI Expo, Minneapolis, MN, October 13, 2014. 

Beckham HW, Cole C. Performance sportswear testing & risk in advertising. Webinar, Sports & Fitness Industry Association, September 11, 2014. 

Beckham HW. Introduction: common pitfalls, and Wrap-up: design considerations for failure prevention. Smart Design for Adhesion: An Industrial Perspective, Golden Gate Polymer Forum, Mountain View, CA, June 27, 2013.

Beckham HW. Dyeing tutorial. AATCC International Conference and Exhibition, Greeneville, SC, April 9, 2013.

Beckham HW. Innovative approaches for carpet dyeing, printing and finishing. 11th Carpet Manufacturing Workshop, Dalton State College, Dalton, GA, October 30, 2012.

Beckham HW. Antimicrobials in packaging: materials, efficacy and regulatory issues. Society of the Plastics Industry: Food, Drug and Cosmetic Packaging Materials Committee Spring Conference, June 5, 2012.

Beckham HW. Material structure, dynamics and morphology by magnetic resonance. Solvay Advanced Polymers, Alpharetta, GA, May 17, 2012.

Beckham HW. Where’s the water? MRI applications in textiles. AATCC Spring Committee Meetings, Research Triangle Park, NC, May 9, 2012.

Beckham HW. Coloration (dyeing/pigmentation) and finishing industrials. Techtextil North America, Atlanta, GA, April 24, 2012.

Beckham HW. Amphiphilic fabrics for control of microfluidic flow. AATCC International Conference and Exhibition, Charlotte, NC, March 23, 2012.

Beckham HW. Polymer nanocomposites: Nanoparticle dispersion by solid-state NMR and materials for quantum computing. Sandia National Lab, Albuquerque, NM, September 15, 2011.

Beckham HW. Material structure, dynamics and morphology by magnetic resonance. Ciba Vision, Johns Creek, GA, September 9, 2011.

Beckham HW. Where's the water? MRI applications in materials science and engineering. Samuel Ginn MRI Seminar Series, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, March 11, 2010.

Beckham HW. NMR studies of cyclic and threaded macromolecules. Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan, November 17, 2006.

Beckham HW. MRI applications in textile and fiber science. Invitations as Fiber Society Lecturer: Malden Mills, Lawrence, MA, February 15, 2006; Nano-Tex, Emeryville, CA, March 6, 2006; University of California, Davis, March 8, 2006; Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, April 6, 2006.

Beckham HW. Wicking of fluids in fibrous substrates. Invitations as Fiber Society Lecturer: University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, February 16, 2006; University of California, Davis, March 8, 2006.

Beckham HW. NMR characterization of pore structure and moisture movement in technical textiles and nonwovens. Techtextil North America, Atlanta, GA, April 9, 2002.

Beckham HW. Fundamentals of moisture transport in textiles. Techtextil North America, Atlanta, GA, March 23, 2000.

Beckham HW. Crosslinkable polyimides via oxidative coupling polymerization of diethynyl diimides. Department of Chemistry, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, April 8, 1999.

Beckham HW. Nuclear magnetic resonance in engineering research: Applications, instruments, and laboratory development. Department of Chemical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore, August 27, 1998.


Patents

U.S. Patent No. 5,223,574: Tough polymer compositions, June 29, 1993 (Gebizlioglu OS, Cohen RE, Argon AS, Beckham HW, Qin J).

U.S. Patent No. 5,115,028: Tough polymer compositions, May 19, 1992 (Gebizlioglu OS, Cohen RE, Argon AS, Beckham HW, Qin J).

Academic Appointments

Adjunct Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology, School of Materials Science and Engineering, 2013–present

Professional Affiliations

American Chemical Society (member)

Fiber Society (member)

American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (senior member, 2015 Chair of Materials Interest Group and member of Board of Directors)

The Textile Institute (member)

ASTM International (member)

Industrial Fabrics Association International (member)

Drycleaning & Laundry Institute (member)

Georgia Association of Manufacturers (associate member)

Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (INDA) (associate member)


Knowledge

News & Events

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • Ph.D., Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), 1991
  • B.S., Textile Chemistry, Auburn University, 1986
  • Outstanding Alumnus, Polymer and Fiber Engineering, Auburn University, 2011

    Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellowship, 2006

    Fiber Society Lecturer, 2006

    NSF CAREER Award, 1995

    NSF Research Initiation Award, 1994

    NSF NATO Fellowship, 1993

    Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship, 1992

    International SAMPE (Society for the Advancement of Material & Process Engineering) Student Award, first place Ph.D. category, 1991

    Auburn University Scholar, 1986

    Phi Eta Sigma, 1983