François Baneyx

Charles W.H. Matthaei Professor
Chemical Engineering

Adjunct Professor

Director, CoMotion
Vice Provost for Innovation
Director, Center for the Science of Synthesis Across Scales

  • (206) 685-7659
  • BNS 307


  • Ph.D., University of Texas (Austin), 1991
  • Ingénieur, E.N.S.I.G.C., Toulouse (France), 1987

Previous appointments

  • Department Chair, UW Department of Chemical Engineering, 2014-2018
  • Director, UW Center for Nanotechnology, 2005-2013
  • Site Director, NSF National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network, 2004-2012
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Du Pont (Wilmington), 1991

Research Statement

Research in the Baneyx laboratory lies at the confluence of synthetic biology, nanotechnology, molecular engineering and materials science. We are a lead lab in CSSAS, the Center for the Science of Synthesis Across Scales, an Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) directed by Prof. Baneyx that brings together investigators from three universities and two national laboratories.

Inspired by nature’s ability to fabricate intricate and often hierarchical materials with outstanding transport, optical, and magnetic properties, we seek to understand the rules that underpin the interaction of combinatorially-selected solid-binding peptides with inorganic and synthetic interfaces. We genetically install these peptides within the framework of rationally or computationally designed proteins, thus combining biological function (e.g., self-assembly, catalysis or molecular transport) with the adhesive and morphogenetic properties of the guest peptides. We use the resulting solid-binding proteins as “parts” in hybrid materials and devices, or synthesize them in cells to fabricate self-organizing, dynamic and living matter with applications ranging from biomedicine and bionanoelectronics to biomineralization and catalysis.

Honors & awards

  • Elected to the Washington State Academy of Sciences, 2016
  • Elected Fellow, American Academy of Microbiology (AAM), 2015
  • Elected Fellow, American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE), 2015
  • Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2013
  • UW College of Engineering Faculty Innovator Award: Research, 2010
  • Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Grand Challenge Exploration Award, 2008