Packaging science and graphics merge to serve industry

By Peter Kent

ground breakign ceremony with SonocoA move to enhance the strengths of packaging science and graphic communications is setting the stage for Clemson to provide global leadership in packaging and graphics innovation. The Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics brings together teaching, research and industry partnerships in the two disciplines.

The program will be housed in a new 28,000-square-foot facility, named the Harris A. Smith Packaging Science Building for the former chief executive officer of Smith Container Corp. in Atlanta.

Scheduled for completion by spring 2009, the building will include three main laboratories: a state-of-the art computer-aided design lab; a package prototyping laboratory capable of developing a multitude of packages from paperboard, corrugated board, plastics and other materials; and an advanced printing technology laboratory.

“Our goal is to merge the industry’s current needs with what is needed for the future,” said Institute director Chip Tonkin. One area for future product development may be printed electronics, a market projected to be $200 billion in the next 20 years.

For information: Chip Tonkin, 864-656-5686,