Recent CAMP Research Activities

Professor Roshan Jachuck Leads Process Intensification & Clean Technology (PICT) Group at Clarkson

Professor Roshan Jachuck, of Newcastle University (UK), heads a newly established Process Intensification and Clean Technology (PICT) group within Clarkson's Department of Chemical Engineering and CAMP. He has over 10 years of research experience in this field and was responsible for setting up the first international Centre on Process Intensification at Newcastle University (UK). A faculty development grant of $375,000 from New York State's Office of Science, Technology, and Academic Research (NYSTAR) has brought Professor Jachuck and his team (three graduate students and post doctoral researcher Dr. Philip Leveson from Newcastle University) to CAMP.

The next generation processing plants for manufacturing advanced functional polymeric materials, nanostructured alloys and composites with improved product characteristics will emerge from the activities in the areas of process intensification and miniaturisation. Nano to microscale multi-functional modules equipped with nanosensors for real time data management will form an integral part of the process manufacturing plant. This innovative approach could make the process plants mobile thereby creating more opportunities for flexible distributed manufacture of high value products with improved product quality, while reducing waste, increasing energy efficiency and improving inherent safety.

Process Intensification (PI) is a novel design philosophy which aims to revolutionize process engineering by revisiting the fundamentals of fluid dynamics and transport phenomena. The concept of PI was conceived by Professor Colin Ramshaw ( Professor Jachuck's mentor) in the mid eighty's and it is generally believed that in the last few years PI has come of age. It is no longer considered an academic dream but has become an industrial reality. The reasons for this may be attributed to the fact that PI has a sound technological base and has the potential to improve processing competitiveness. The perceived benefits of this technology are many and are appropriate for the processing industry, which is currently braced with extreme challenges and is striving for a competitive edge. Process flexibility, improved product quality, speed to market, just in time manufacturing, reduced foot print, improved inherent safety and energy efficiency, distributed manufacturing capability and ability to use reactants at higher concentrations are some of the benefits of the proposed technology. In order to realise the benefits of process intensification reactors, intensified heat and mass transfer modules together with novel processing routes will be required.


Professor Sergiy Minko's Work Involves Nanostructured Responsive Materials

Professor Sergiy Minko (Egon Matijevic' Chair Professor of Chemistry) recently joined Clarkson University from the GW Leibniz Institute for Polymer Research in Dresden, Germany. He is an expert in colloid science and has done extensive work with "smart" responsive functional materials based on self assembly in polymer and colloidal systems. Polymer molecules are very sensitive to external stimuli and respond by dramatically changing conformations. This mechanism is in the origin of key functions and interactions in living organisms. The goal of Professor Minko's research is to introduce this concept into the world of synthetic materials combining basic fundamental, and application oriented research.

Synthetic approaches allow for the combination of various functions in the one material when the desired function/behavior can be "switched on" or "switched off" on demand or upon external stimuli. Hence materials are becoming "smart," expressing behavior which is characteristic rather for devices. Such a behavior is specially valuable at the nanoscopic level, when the construction of devices is limited by small sizes.

Responsive materials allow for the combination of dramatically different physical properties and the external signal results in expressing one of them or a combination of them. In this way geometrical size and shape, adhesion, wetting behavior, electroconductivity, light emission, etc. can be alternated with outside changes.