Engineered surfactants for water treatment

Required Availability
Summer 2022
Course Credit?
Paid Position?
Yes - $12/hr
Preferred Majors
Chemical Engineering | Chemistry
Amanda Koh

High internal phase emulsion polymer foams are a unique type of adsorbent that can be easily controlled and tailored to improve water quality in many different environments. While a lot of work has gone into using different types of polymers for the foam itself, little work has focused on the surfactant that is required to stabilize the initial emulsion. Not only could an improved surfactant enhance the water treatment properties of the material and make it more suitable to different flow environments, but the surfactants can also pose an environmental challenge of their if not treated properly. This work will focus on making new surfactants that have improved covalent interactions with the polymer adsorbent to reduce the environmental and manufacturing burden of the foam material while simultaneously improving their performance as an adsorbent. Ideally, students will continue this work into the academic year. During the academic year pay is not available, but students can continue the work for course credit.

Special Skills

Synthesis will be required, so you don't need to already have the skills but be prepared to run a lot of reactions and track synthesis accordingly.

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