Research Interest | Projects | Patents

| Microfluidic System and Components | Fluid Behavior and Dynamics: Study and Application | Chemical and Biological Detection | Synthesis of dye-doped silica nanoparticles | Material-encapsulated Polymer Particles | Fabrication of Free-standing Nanomembranes
| Feedstock Recycling |

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Microfluidic System and Components

1. Droplet-based Microfluidics

Recent studies on droplet-based microfluidics have drawn great attentions with the development of new methods and applications in various fields of lab-on-a-chip technology. Droplets provide unique opportunities to handle fluids in a discrete manner, offering novel platform of miniaturized system for chemical and biological processes. Compartmentalization of pre-defined fluid in an immiscible phase system allows enhanced reaction with reduced dispersion of reactants, taking the advantages of mixing by recirculation and fast molecular transport across the interface between disperse and continuous phase due to the high interface-area-to-volume ratio. In addition, possible control of droplet breakup, coalescence and movement by various physical forces leads to individual and independent use of droplets as tiny and convenient reaction vessels and fluid carriers in a microfluidic system. These features of droplet-based microfluidics have been beneficial in such areas as biology, drug discovery and chemical synthesis.

2. Microfluidics for Biomaterials

Biological targets are always transported by body fluids in vitro and in vivo. Microfluidic systems operate on a scale that meets physical scale of cells and therefore allow us to interface and separate the cells at this micron-scale. We are targeting the functional cell encapsulation at single-cell level for the various applications, such as detection of pathogen and screening of genetically modified cell.

3. Nanoparticle Synthesis Using Microfluidics

Microfluidic systems are widely used in nanoparticle synthesis for its narrow size distribution and facile control of reaction conditions. We are researching on size and morphology of nanoparticles and its application.

Fluid Behavior and Dynamics: Study and Application

1. Study and Application of Taylor-Couette Flow

Flow dynamics and characteristics of Taylor-Couette flow are extensively studied using both experiment and CFD. This researches subjects also involves the design and manufacture of chemical reactors using Taylor-Couette flow, as well as studies on catalytic reaction, material synthesis and mixing in which Taylor-Couette flow can be applied.

2. Productivity Enhancement of the Microalgae in Raceway Pond

Generally, microalgae cultivation takes place in the raceway pond. Various experiments and numerical approaches are suggested to enhance mixing property inside the raceway pond. Our laboratory uses both experiments and computational flow dynamics to improve the productivity of microalgae as one of the future sources of energy.

Chemical and Biological Detection

The detection of specific biological molecules becomes more and more important with the development of biology into molecular regime dealing with a single cell rather than population of cells. We are developing materials and devices for the detection of biological species, including alpha-fetoprotein (AFP, liver cancer marker).

Synthesis of Dye-doped Silica Nanoparticles

Light emitting materials have been widely used in both chemical and bioanalytic applications due to the chemical stability and unique fluorescent properties. In order to use fluorescent dyes in biological applications, several properties such as high quantum yield, stability in aqueous phase, long-term photo-stability, non-toxicity and low cost are required. Generally fluorescent materials are developed to have strong emission. However, major problems of these materials in biological applications are stability in aqueous phase and toxicity. Because of these problems, the applicability of fluorescent dyes is limited and the new methods to modify the fluorescent dyes have been increased. One of the promising methods to solve the problems is encapsulation in stable materials such as silica.

Material-encapsulated Polymer Particles

Several synthesis methods to make polymer particles by heterogeneous polymerization such as emulsion, dispersion and suspension method have been developed, employing either oil-in-water or water-in-oil systems. Among these methods, suspension polymerization is particularly suited to the production of micron-size of polymer beads containing pigments, drugs and other materials because of its simplicity and economy. Here, one of the most important and complicated factors in suspension polymerization is stability of dispersed system which is characterized by a constant behavior through the process and the uniform distribution of the dispersed phase in the continuous phase. Also in a conventional suspension polymerization, it is hard to get fine particles and desired surface morphology. One of the solutions is to use droplet microfluidics which can overcome those kind of problems generating droplets of uniform size and shape. Our research interest is to make very stable emulsion solution using a microfluidic device and synthesis aiming material-encapsulated polymer particles from this emulsion.

Fabrication of Free-standing Nanomembranes

Flexibility and biocompatibility of the poly dimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membrane make it one of the most common tissue-mimicking materials. For practical application, these thin PDMS membranes should be large, free-standing and easy to handle. Therefore, we are working on fabricating large, free-standing PDMS nanomembrane to be used as an artificial skin scaffold.

Feedstock Recycling

Green technology with sustainable development has now been accepted by the governments, industry and the public as a necessary goal for achieving the desired environmental, economic and societal objectives. The challenge for chemists and engineers is to develop new products and processes that achieve all the benefits of sustainable development. This requires a new approach whereby the materials and energy input to a process are minimized, the synthesized products are recycled into high-value-added products, and the material losses are minimized. Recycling is a basic application towards the concept of green technology.

The current proliferation of plastics (mainly (PET) polyethylene terephthalate) poses serious environmental and economic concerns and their chemical recycling to useful feedstocks is a promising choice for the sustainable growth. Several different approaches by using either environmentally benign solvents or novel catalysts to depolymerize PET into its monomer bis(2-hydroxyethyl) terephthalate (BHET) have been investigated in our group. The objective is to develop a process that gives high monomer throughput in a short reaction time. To get further insight, the reaction mechanism and kinetics, and the modeling and simulation of the process is under investigation.

| Microfluidic System and Components | Fluid Behavior and Dynamics: Study and Application | Chemical and Biological Detection | Synthesis of dye-doped silica nanoparticles | Material-encapsulated Polymer Particles | Fabrication of Free-standing Nanomembranes
| Feedstock Recycling |

| Go to Previous Researches |