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  • Katherine Hollingsworth

Tuesday's UGM Webinar: Materials Innovations for Chemical Separations

UGM Plenary Speaker Spotlight

Next week's spotlight is on Professor Jeffrey Grossman; Department Head of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Morton and Claire Goulder and Family Professor in Environmental Systems, USA.

Materials Innovations for Chemical Separations


Materials innovation is essential to dramatically accelerate a transition to the clean and sustainable technologies urgently needed to maintain the habitability of our planet. Materials science and engineering will empower this critical transition by enabling researchers to understand and control the properties and behavior of matter down to the atomic scale. These new insights and capabilities support global optimizations of material composition and processing parameters across an exhaustive range of applications, performance metrics, and service conditions.

Key performance characteristics of engineering components often are dictated by the intrinsic properties of their constituent active materials. In these many cases the crucial development challenge for achieving the game-changing forward technology leaps currently needed to sustain human health and the Earth’s biosystem is to design, optimize, and manufacture superior new materials to maximize the performance envelopes of critical technologies.

This lecture will address the impact of materials design in selected representative applications. We will highlight our recent work on understanding the properties of novel resilient nanofiltration membranes aimed at improving the efficiency of the industrial chemical separation processes responsible for 15% of all global CO2 emissions.

In one application example, the development of a novel graphene-oxide based membrane will be described, from its inception as an idea using purely computational approaches, to the tight integration of experiment and simulation to accelerate initial laboratory prototypes, to the scale-up and commercialization of the material, now in pilot plants in the pulp & paper industry.

In another application example, the design of nano-porous silicon membranes will be discussed. In this case, overcoming the challenge of controlled nanoscale synthesis began with experimental innovation. Those early breakthroughs led to computational design that in turn led to the commercialization of the membranes, which could dramatically reduce the cost and number of steps in battery recycling.


Professor Jeffrey Grossman

Jeffrey C. Grossman is the Department Head of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Morton and Claire Goulder and Family Professor in Environmental Systems. He received his PhD in theoretical physics from the University of Illinois and performed postdoctoral work at the University of California at Berkeley.

He was a Lawrence Fellow at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and returned to Berkeley as director of a Nanoscience Center and head of the Computational Nanoscience research group, with a focus on energy applications. In fall 2009, he joined MIT, where he has developed a research program known for its contributions to energy conversion, energy storage, membranes, and clean-water technologies.

In recognition of his contributions to engineering education, Grossman was named an MIT MacVicar Faculty Fellow and received the Bose Award for Excellence in Teaching, in addition to being named a fellow of the American Physical Society. He has published more than 200 scientific papers, holds 17 current or pending U.S. patents, and recently co-founded a company to commercialize graphene-oxide membranes.

Other internationally renowned speakers at the User Group Meeting include:

  • Jörg Behler (University of Göttingen, Germany)

  • Carla Verdi (University of Vienna, Austria)

  • Georg Kresse (University of Vienna, Austria)

  • Jozef Bicerano (Bicerano & Associates Consulting, LLC, USA)

Register Now

Webinar Sessions

Tuesday October 4*: 10:00 am PDT / 1:00 pm EDT USA 9:00 pm GMT England 10:00 pm Europe CEST

Jeffrey Grossman's lecture will include a live Question and Answer session directly following the presentation.

*Recording and Slides

Registrations will also include a link to the recording and slides after the sessions end.



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