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February 2020

CBE Faculty Candidate Seminar: Decomposition: Exploiting Structure in Chemical Systems to Solve Challenging Decision-Making Problems”

February 19 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Computational optimal decision-making tools are essential for ensuring that systems are designed, operated, and controlled in an economic and sustainable manner. Using optimization to make decisions for chemical and energy systems is particularly challenging due to the inherent presence of nonlinear process physics, both integer and continuous decisions, uncertainties in important parameters, and multiple relevant time scales. This talk addresses the method of decomposition, which solves large, computationally challenging decision-making problems through a set of smaller, easier-to-solve subproblems. The…

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CBE Faculty Candidate Seminar: Towards a “Greener” Route for Acetic Acid Production via the Carbonylation of Dimethyl Ether Over Small-Pore Molecular Sieves

February 24 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Catalyst design is a critical pillar, and current bottleneck, in the construction of a sustainable chemical industry. Practical catalytic materials are earth-abundant, active, selective, and stable. Developing materials that meet these criteria is challenging and involves a two-phase process that (1) extracts molecular-level understanding of the origin of reactivity for a given chemical pathway, and (2) exploits this understanding through tailored synthetic techniques. In this talk, I will focus on catalyst design for the Koch-type carbonylation pathway, a reaction…

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CBE Faculty Candidate Seminar: “Understanding and Design of Materials of High Energy Density Batteries”

February 26 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Environmental challenges and economic forces are reshaping the way we generate and consume energy on a global scale. To keep up with the accelerating adoption of electric vehicles, allow for grid scale energy storage, and meet the demands of future technological advances, new materials for high energy density batteries must be developed. High costs have prevented widespread deployment of lithium-ion batteries beyond portable electronics, and the safety hazards of exothermic reactions associated with traditional materials during cell failure remain…

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April 2020

CBE Seminar: “Model-Based Chemical Product Design and Analysis”

April 1 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Chemical products are usually designed and developed through heuristic rule-based and/or trial-and-error experiment-based approaches. Although this kind of approaches often lead to safe and reliable product designs, since it is not practically feasible to consider all alternatives, it may not be possible to find the optimal product. As an alternative approach, the use of model-based design methods has been gaining increased attention as they have the potential to rapidly generate and/or screen product candidates in a much larger design…

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John A. Quinn Distinguished Lecture: “Molecular and Colloidal Interactions in Water”

April 8 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Life occurs in water, and water-mediated interactions between molecules and interfaces are central to biological assembly processes.  Synthetic materials as common as shampoo rely on water-mediated interactions.  This presentation will describe experiments that highlight our lack of understanding of interactions in water. This lack of understanding presents the opportunity to formulate a refined set of design rules for self-assembly of engineered functional materials in water.

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CBE Seminar: Biomaterials-Mediated Inflammation Control”

April 22 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wu and Chen Auditorium (Room 101), Levine Hall, 3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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Abstract: Many chronic disabling diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus erythematosus are increasingly linked to inappropriate and chronic activation of inflammatory cells. A central event in the pathogenesis of these diseases appears to be an aberrant activation of innate immune sensors, most prominently the Pattern Recognition Receptors (PRRs), by nucleic acids that are released from dead and dying cells. Moreover, such extracellular nucleic acids have also been implicated in inflammatory diseases such as heart attack,…

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