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Augmenting Protocols for In-situ Separation of Biocompounds.

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In our modern world the source of for many chemicals is to acquire and refine oil. This process is becoming an expensive to the environment and to human health. Alternative processes for acquiring the final product have been developed but

In our modern world the source of for many chemicals is to acquire and refine oil. This process is becoming an expensive to the environment and to human health. Alternative processes for acquiring the final product have been developed but still need work. One product that is valuable is butanol. The normal process for butanol production is very intensive but there is a method to produce butanol from bacteria. This process is better because it is more environmentally safe than using oil. One problem however is that when the bacteria produce too much butanol it reaches the toxicity limit and stops the production of butanol. In order to keep butanol from reaching the toxicity limit an adsorbent is used to remove the butanol without harming the bacteria. The adsorbent is a mesoporous carbon powder that allows the butanol to be adsorbed on it. This thesis explores different designs for a magnetic separation process to extract the carbon powder from the culture.

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2015-05

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Process Control Applications in Microbial Fuel Cells(MFC)

Description

Microbial fuel cells(MFC) use micro-organisms called anode-respiring bacteria(ARB) to convert chemical energy into electrical energy. This process can not only treat wastewater but can also produce useful byproduct hydrogen peroxide(H2O2). Process variables like anode potential and pH play important role

Microbial fuel cells(MFC) use micro-organisms called anode-respiring bacteria(ARB) to convert chemical energy into electrical energy. This process can not only treat wastewater but can also produce useful byproduct hydrogen peroxide(H2O2). Process variables like anode potential and pH play important role in the MFC operation and the focus of this dissertation are pH and potential control problems.

Most of the adaptive pH control solutions use signal-based-norms as cost functions, but their strong dependency on excitation signal properties makes them sensitive to noise, disturbances, and modeling errors. System-based-norm( H-infinity) cost functions provide a viable alternative for the adaptation as they are less susceptible to the signal properties. Two variants of adaptive pH control algorithms that use approximate H-infinity frequency loop-shaping (FLS) cost metrics are proposed in this dissertation.

A pH neutralization process with high retention time is studied using lab scale experiments and the experimental setup is used as a basis to develop a first-principles model. The analysis of such a model shows that only the gain of the process varies significantly with operating conditions and with buffering capacity. Consequently, the adaptation of the controller gain (single parameter) is sufficient to compensate for the variation in process gain and the focus of the proposed algorithms is the adaptation of the PI controller gain. Computer simulations and lab-scale experiments are used to study tracking, disturbance rejection and adaptation performance of these algorithms under different excitation conditions. Results show the proposed algorithm produces optimum that is less dependent on the excitation as compared to a commonly used L2 cost function based algorithm and tracks set-points reasonably well under practical conditions. The proposed direct pH control algorithm is integrated with the combined activated sludge anaerobic digestion model (CASADM) of an MFC and it is shown pH control improves its performance.

Analytical grade potentiostats are commonly used in MFC potential control, but, their high cost (>$6000) and large size, make them nonviable for the field usage. This dissertation proposes an alternate low-cost($200) portable potentiostat solution. This potentiostat is tested using a ferricyanide reactor and results show it produces performance close to an analytical grade potentiostat.

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Date Created
2018

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3D Printing of Stainless Steel 316L for Corrosive and Low-pressure Environments

Description

Corrosion is one of the key failure modes for stainless steel (SS) piping assets handling water resources managed by utility companies. During downtime, the costs start to incur as the field engineer procures its replacement parts. The parts may or

Corrosion is one of the key failure modes for stainless steel (SS) piping assets handling water resources managed by utility companies. During downtime, the costs start to incur as the field engineer procures its replacement parts. The parts may or may not be in stock depending on how old, complex, and common the part model is. As a result, water utility companies and its resilience to operate amid part failure are a strong function of the supply chain for replacement piping. Metal additive manufacturing (AM) has been widely recognized for its ability to (a) deliver small production scales, (b) address complex part geometries, (c) offer large elemental metal and alloy selections, (d) provide superior material properties. The key motive is to harvest the short lead time of metal AM to explore its use for replacement parts for legacy piping assets in utility-scale water management facilities. In this paper, the goal was to demonstrate 3D printing of stainless steel (SS) 316L parts using selective laser melting (SLM) technology. The corrosion resistance of 3D printed SS 316L was investigated using (a) Chronoamperometry (b) Cyclic Potentiodynamic Polarization (CPP) and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) and its improved resistance from wrought (conventional) part was also studied. Then the weldability of 3D printed SS 316L to wrought SS 316L was illustrated and finally, the mechanical strength of the weld and the effect of corrosion on weld strength was investigated using uniaxial tensile testing. The results show that 3D printed part compared to the wrought part has a) lower mass loss before and after corrosion, (b) higher pitting potential, and (c) higher charge transfer resistance. The tensile testing of welded dog bone specimens indicates that the 3D printed parts despite being less ductile were observed to have higher weld strength compared to the wrought part. On this basis, metal AM holds great value to be explored further for replacement piping parts owing to their better corrosion resistance and mechanical performance.

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Date Created
2021

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Synthesis and characterization of ZIF-71/PDMS membranes for biofuel separation

Description

Membranes are a key part of pervaporation processes, which is generally a more

efficient process for selective removal of alcohol from water than distillation. It is

necessary that the membranes have high alcohol permeabilities and selectivities.

Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) based mixed matrix membranes (MMMs)

Membranes are a key part of pervaporation processes, which is generally a more

efficient process for selective removal of alcohol from water than distillation. It is

necessary that the membranes have high alcohol permeabilities and selectivities.

Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) based mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) have

demonstrated very promising results. Zeolitic imidazolate framework-71 (ZIF-71)

demonstrated promising alcohol separation abilities. In this dissertation, we present

fundamental studies on the synthesis of ZIF-71/PDMS MMMs.

Free-standing ZIF-71/ PDMS membranes with 0, 5, 25 and 40 wt % ZIF-71

loadings were prepared and the pervaporation separation for ethanol and 1-butanol from

water was measured. ZIF-71/PDMS MMMs were formed through addition cure and

condensation cure methods. Addition cure method was not compatible with ZIF-71

resulting in membranes with poor mechanical properties, while the condensation cure

method resulted in membranes with good mechanical properties. The 40 wt % ZIF-71

loading PDMS nanocomposite membranes achieved a maximum ethanol/water selectivity

of 0.81 ± 0.04 selectivity and maximum 1-butnaol/water selectivity of 5.64 ± 0.15.

The effects of synthesis time, temperature, and reactant ratio on ZIF-71 particle

size and the effect of particle size on membrane performance were studied. Temperature

had the greatest effect on ZIF-71 particle size as the synthesis temperature varied from -

20 to 35 ºC. The ZIF-71 synthesized had particle diameters ranging from 150 nm to 1

μm. ZIF-71 particle size is critical in ZIF-71/PDMS composite membrane performance

for alcohol removal from water through pervaporation. The membranes made with

micron sized ZIF-71 particles showed higher alcohol/water selectivity than those with

smaller particles. Both alcohol and water permeability increased when larger sized ZIF-

71 particles were incorporated.

ZIF-71 particles were modified with four ligands through solvent assisted linker

exchange (SALE) method: benzimidazole (BIM), 5-methylbenzimidazole (MBIM), 5,6-

dimethylbenzimidazole (DMBIM) and 4-Phenylimidazole (PI). The morphology of ZIF-

71 were maintained after the modification. ZIF-71/PDMS composite membranes with 25

wt% loading modified ZIF-71 particles were made for alcohol/water separation. Better

particle dispersion in PDMS polymer matrix was observed with the ligand modified ZIFs.

For both ethanol/water and 1-butanol/water separations, the alcohol permeability and

alcohol/water selectivity were lowered after the ZIF-71 ligand exchange reaction.

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Date Created
2017