Venue: Lobby of Auditorium between bldg. 4 & 5, level 0
Venue: Auditorium between bldg. 4 & 5, level 0
Asatekin lab focuses on new polymeric materials designed to self-assemble to impart improved and/or new functionality to separation membranes by controlling nano-scale morphology and surface functionality. Our work aims to develop new membranes for generating fresh water, treating wastewater, and process separations. We focus on preventing membrane fouling and controlling membrane selectivity while maintaining high flux and simple, scalable manufacturing methods.
Permeation through nanometre-pore materials has been attracting unwavering interest due to fundamental differences in governing mechanisms at macroscopic and molecular scales, the importance of water permeation in living systems, and relevance for filtration and separation techniques. Latest advances in the fabrication of artificial channels and membranes using two-dimensional (2D) materials have enabled the prospect of understanding the nanoscale and sub-nm scale permeation behaviour of water and ions extensively. In particular, graphene oxide (GO) membrane containing 2D graphene capillaries shows unique permeation properties such as ultrafast permeation of water and molecular sieving. In my talk, I will discuss our recent results on molecular and ionic permeation properties of GO membranes and its prospect for several applications.
We have recently reported the fabrication of metal–organic framework (MOF) membranes for potential application for selective removal of ions from water. Ultrathin and defect-free MOF membranes are required to achieve high ion flux. We have developed new seeding strategies for fabricating ultrathin and high-quality molecular sieving membranes on various porous substrates. For instance, hybrid MOF nanosheets are formed by growing MOF nanocrystals on both sides of 2D graphene oxide nanosheets. These flexible, micro-sized hybrid nanosheets allow for seeding substrates with large-pores and rough surface, eliminating substrate modification required in the conventional synthesis using nanocrystal seeds. We have further developed a novel nanocrystal-mask plasma etching method for synthesizing MOF/mesoporous GO (MOF/MGO) hybrid nanosheets. And then, a MOF membrane was fabricated by intergrowth of MOF within a preformed laminated MOF/MGO matrix. Due to their ultrathin thickness and well-aligned MGO nanosheets, this hierarchical structural MOF/MGO membrane is suitable for studying ion transport and selection. We have found that such membranes have fast, selective ion permeation properties and demonstrated selective transport of various cations and anions in MOF-based membranes.
Graphene oxide (GO) and reduced Graphene oxide (rGO) are 2D materials which exhibit unique anti-fouling and anti-bacterial properties along with high water permeability through its 2D channels, good selectivity and good thermal, mechanical and chemical stability. These unique properties offer the opportunity to incorporate GO and rGO and synthesize new membranes for water filtration applications such as Forward Osmosis, pervaporation, Reverse Osmosis, ultrafiltration and nanofiltration.
Venue: Campus Library, level 2 (seaside)
The 2019 Nano-Enabled Water Technologies Conference will feature a poster session. This will provide conference attendees with another way, in addition to the lectures, to share and exchange information.
Thirty-four participants from KAUST and various Saudi Universities will present their research using ePoster live solution.
Venue: Golf Club Restaurant
6:00 pm - A small bus will take participants from KAUST Inn 1, every 15 minutes
8:00 pm - A small bus will start transferring participants to KAUST Inn 1, students' accommodation, Tamimi and the Visitor Center
Delivering light into reactors to enable nanomaterials, and separating nanomaterials from water, are two barriers to broadening the use of nanomaterials for drinking water. Optical fibers provide new modalities to deliver UV-A, B, C or visible light into a wide variety of reactor geometries. This presentation will cover three novel water treatment objectives that can be achieved using optical fibers coated with nanomaterials, including destruction of organics, removal of hardness, and disinfection. The physics of light and interactions within optical fibers will be discussed, with the intent of maximizing effectiveness of light enabling nano-technology related reactions. Attaching nanomaterials, securely, to optical fibers prevents concern about their release into drinking water – and in some cases limits their ability to be fouled by non-targeted constituents in water.
Clean air and clean water are critical requirements for environmental sustainability. To assure the quality of these matrices, we currently rely upon a broad range of monitoring techniques - many of which are outdated, unreliable, or excessively expensive. Recent advances in both nanotechnology and biotechnology, however, are poised to provide novel and previously unattainable alternatives that have the potential to be more sensitive as well as more cost-effective than many existing methods. In this presentation, we will present work conducted to develop gold enabled plasmonic platforms that facilitate detection of inorganic, organic, biologic, and nanoparticulate contaminants. As will be shown, both light spectroscopy and Raman spectroscopy can be used to detect and quantify environmental contaminants in a range of different media. A particular focus will be on detection of antibiotic resistance genes in water.
Phosphorene is two-dimensional material exfoliated from bulk phosphorus and it possesses a band gap. Specifically, relevant to the field of membrane science, the band gap of phosphorene provides it with potential photocatalytic properties, which could be explored in making reactive membranes that can self-clean. The goal of this study was to develop an innovative and robust membrane able to control and reverse fouling with minimal changes in membrane performance. To this end, for the first time, membranes have been embedded with phosphorene. Membrane modification was verified by the presence of phosphorus on membranes, along with changes in surface charge, average pore size and hydrophobicity. After modification, phosphorene-modified membranes were used to filter methylene blue (MB) under intermittent ultraviolet light irradiation. Phosphorene-modified and unmodified membranes displayed similar rejection of MB; however, after reverse-flow filtration was performed to mimic pure water cleaning, the average recovered flux of phosphorene-modified membranes was four times higher than that of unmodified membranes. Furthermore, coverage of MB on phosphorene membranes after reverse-flow filtration was four times lower than that of unmodified membranes, which supports the hypothesis that phosphorene membranes operated under intermittent ultraviolet irradiation can become self-cleaning.
Highly efficient, low-energy-consuming, reliable, and easily-applicable pathogen inactivation methods are in great demand for protecting human health from waterborne diseases, especially in regions suffering from energy shortages and infrastructure deficiencies. Nanowire-assisted low-voltage electroporation enables effective and energy-efficient pathogen inactivation. Nevertheless, the insufficient stability of the nanowires has become a major obstacle in practical applications: a state-of-the-art copper-oxide-nanowire-modified copper foam (CuONW-Cu) electrode can only sustain disinfection for about 10 minutes. We have tried two different strategies to improve the stability of the nanowires: 1) applying a protective polydopamine (PDA) coating and 2) converting CuONWs to Cu3PNWs. Applying either of these strategies has successfully increased the lifetime of the electrode to more than 10 hours while retaining the high microbial inactivation efficiency. In the meantime, the energy consumption of the electroporation disinfection process has been further reduced to 1.2 J per liter of water treated.
Given the vast abundance and inexhaustibility of sunlight, tapping into solar energy to supplement clean water supply and to treat wastewater is a viable solution to current global challenges of fresh water scarcity and clean energy shortage. Solar driven water evaporation, which uses photothermal materials to capture and convert sunlight to heat so to generate water vapor, is an integral part of any solar powered clean water production. In this presentation, various advanced photothermal materials with proper heat management that are able to capture whole solar spectrum and convent it to heat with extremely high efficiency will be covered. Very recent development of next-generation solar still design will be presented. The application of solar water evaporation to brine treatment with zero-liquid discharge (ZLD) will be introduced along with fully solar driven sorption-based atmospheric water generators (AWGs).
Incomplete understanding of how a nanomaterial’s properties control its activity, fate, and bioavailability in plants and soils hinders development of novel nano-enabled applications, e.g. CeO2 for managing stress or CuO/ZnO NPs for supplementing plant nutritoin. My current research aims to develop a more fundamental understanding of how the properties of nanomaterials can be engineered to promote uptake and phloem loading in foliar applications, and how nanomaterial, soil, and plant properties together affects nanomaterial transformation, fate, and bioavailbility/toxicity in plants. Using synchrotron X-ray analysis, the spatial distribution and speciation of metal and metal oxide NPs in live plants is used to determine how the nanomaterial properties influence their foliar and root uptake, and their translocation to other parts of the plant. Overall, the body of evidence to date indicates great potential for manipulating nanomaterial properties for beneficial applications in agriculture and for increasing agrochemical utilization efficiency and sustainability of food production.
Conventional processes for ammonium removal are biological processes, like (de)nitrification and Annamox®. In both cases the ammonium is converted to nitrogen gas and all potential energy is lost. On top of that about 1-2% of ammonium will be discharged as N2O which is an unwanted strong greenhouse gas. Alternative treatment methods try to recover the ammonium as concentrated streams that can be reused, recovering the energy potential and preventing N2O emissions. But these alternative methods, like stripping, use a lot of energy.
Process waters from agro-food industry are an important source of both reclaimed water and bioderived green chemicals. For example, waters coming from the production of olive oil are reach in biophenols, that can find use as nutraceuticals, antiinflammatory, but also as fine chemical substitutes of oil derived products. In this area, the use of integrated processes based on nanostructured membranes confirmed, on a laboratory prototype scale, the possibility to recover and valorize biofunctional molecules fractions. Simultaneously, water can be purified to the extend of being reused in the prodcutive line. The introduction of biofunctional membranes (i.e. membranes that bear biofuntional properties such as biocatalytic, biosensing, biocide activity, etc.) can promote advances in the process performance in terms of production properties, degradation of contaminants, biofouling control, etc. Biofunctional membranes can be obtained by introducing a biocomponent into the synthetic membrane matrix (biohybrid membranes) or by introducing a synthetic structure that exhibits the boactive property (biomimic membrane). The lecture will focus on the development of biohybrid membranes, highlighting the crucial role of membranes with nanongineered materials and structures to properly heterogenize biomolecules as well as guarantee suitable transport properties thus improving process performance. Case studies realted to the production of biophenols and the degradation of micropollutants will be illustrated.
Renal failure is a debilitating and chronical condition in which kidneys are no longer able to remove toxins and excess fluid from the body. For patients with terminal kidney disease, that were approximately 3.2 million at the end of 2017, haemodialysis is the primary support treatment. Two of the main drawbacks of the therapy are the massive use of water, about 120 l per patient per treatment, and the uncomplete removal of uremic toxins from blood. Our work is focused on the preparation and characterization of novel porous Mixed Matrix Membranes Adsorbers (MMMAs) to remove the toxic compounds present in the spent dialysate side f the process. The purified water might be reused, to produce new dialysis fluid for the same patient, in order to reduce substantially the amount of pure water required for a single dialysis treatment. Porous Mixed Matrix Membrane Adsorbers based on cellulose acetate were fabricated and modified with the addition of a natural zeolite, ZUF, to enhance the affinity towards urea, creatinine and uric acid. Water permeability tests and batch adsorption tests were performed on the prepared adsorbers and encouraging results have been obtained. According to the different amount of ZUF added, which ranges from 5 to 30 wt% of ZUF, it is possible to notice an increase in water permeability from 728 to 1379 l/(hm2bar). Moreover, the presence of ZUF increases the removal capacity of the pure cellulose acetate membrane up to 83% for urea and up to 28% for creatinine, while for uric acid it remains approximately the same. In parallel to this work, other adsorbent materials, like ZSM-5 zeolite and activated carbon, have been tested in batch adsorption experiments with the different toxins, to investigate their potential use as fillers for the MMMAs, To simulate real process conditions, experiments with mixtures of toxins are ongoing, while tests in a real dialysis set-up will be performed with the most promising MMMA.
Cloud-seeding materials as a promising water-augmentation technology have drawn more attention recently. We designed and synthesized a type of core/shell NaCl/TiO2 (CSNT) particles with controlled particle size, which successfully adsorbed more water vapor than that of pure NaCl, deliquesced at lower environmental RH of 62 - 66 % than the hygroscopic point (hg.p., 75 % RH) of NaCl, and formed larger water droplets ～ 6 - 10 times of its original measured size area, whereas the pure NaCl still remained as crystal at the same condition. The enhanced performance was attributed to the synergistic effect of the hydrophilic TiO2 shell and hygroscopic NaCl core microstructure, which attracted large amount of water vapor and turned it into liquid faster. Moreover, the critical particle size of CSNT particles (0.4 - 10 μm) as cloud-seeding materials was predicted via classical Kelvin equation based on their surface hydrophilicity. Finally, the benefits of CSNT particles for cloud-seeding application were determined visually through in-situ observation under Environmental - Scanning Electron Microscope (E-SEM) in microscale and cloud chamber experiments in macroscale, respectively. These excellent and consistent performances positively confirmed that CSNT particles could be the promising cloud-seeding materials.
Awards will be given to the three best posters.
Venue: Al Marsa Restaurant
6:30 pm - A small bus will take participants from KAUST Inn 1, every 15 minutes
8:30 pm - A small bus will start transferring participants to KAUST Inn 1, students' accommodation, Tamimi and the Visitor Center.
Venue: KAUST Inn 2 Time: 7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Venue: Al Marsa boat dock A light lunch will be served.
7:45 am - A small bus will take the participants to Al Marsa
12:00 pm - Guests will be returned to KAUST Inn
Please be advised that the core labs tour starts on time.
The big bus leaves from Bldg. 16 at 3:30 p.m.