Department of Chemical Engineering

ChE Seminar Series: "Multilayer Nanocoatings Capable of Separating Gases, Killing Bacteria and Stopping Fire"

Dr. Jaime C. Grunlan  (Department of Mechanical Engineering - Texas A&M) will be offering a lecture titled "Multilayer Nanocoatings Capable of Separating Gases, Killing Bacteria and Stopping Fire"

Date: October 15th, 2015

Time: 10:30am – 12:00 pm

Place: INQU 004 - Amphitheater

"Multilayer Nanocoatings Capable of Separating Gases, 
Killing Bacteria and Stopping Fire"
Layer-by-layer (LbL) assembly is a conformal coating “platform” technology capable of imparting a multiplicity of functionalities on nearly any type of surface in a relatively environmentally friendly way. At its core, LbL is a solution deposition technique in which layers of cationic and anionic materials (e.g. nanoparticles, polymers and even biological molecules) are built up via electrostatic attractions in an alternating fashion, while controlling process variables such as pH, coating time, and concentration. Here we are producing nanocomposite multilayers (50 – 1000 nm thick), having 10 – 96 wt% clay, that are completely transparent and exhibit oxygen transmission rates below 0.005 cm3/m2•day.  This exceptional oxygen barrier makes these coatings interesting for food, consumer products and flexible electronics packaging.  These same ‘nanobrick wall’ assemblies are very conformal and able to impart flame resistance to highly flammable foam and fabric by uniformly coating the complex three-dimensional geometries.  I’ll also describe how all-polymer thin films can separate H2 from N2 (or CO2) with selectivity greater than 2000, which exceeds other commonly used gas separation membranes (including zeolites).  These films can also be produced with graphene oxide to generate high barrier and low sheet resistance.  With surprisingly high Seebeck coefficient (> 100 ?V/K), these films also exhibit a very high thermoelectric power factor (up to 3000 ?W/m•K2).  We hope to eventually produce fabric that can generate voltage from body heat.  Our work in these areas has been highlighted in C&EN, ScienceNews, Nature, Smithsonian Magazine, Chemistry World and various scientific news outlets worldwide.  For more information, please visit my website: 
Dr. Jaime C. Grunlan
Dr. Jaime Grunlan is the Linda & Ralph Schmidt ’68 Professor of Mechanical Engineering.  He obtained a B.S. in Chemistry from North Dakota State University and a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Minnesota.  Prof. Grunlan was promoted to Full Professor in 2014, becoming the Linda & Ralph Schmidt ’68 Professor in 2015.  His research focuses on thermal and transport properties of nanocomposite materials, especially in the areas of thermoelectric energy generation, gas barrier and fire prevention.  He won the NSF CAREER and 3M Untenured Faculty awards in 2007, the Dow 2009 Young Faculty Award, the 2010 Carl A. Dahlquist Award, the 2012 L.E. Scriven Young Investigator Award, sponsored by the ISCST, the 2013 E. D. Brockett Professorship, the 2014 Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station Fellowship and 2015 Dean of Engineering Excellence Award for his work in these areas.  He has published over 120 journal papers and filed several patents. He has graduated 16 PhD students who have gone on to become professors and work for top companies like PepsiCo, 3M, Boeing and Intel. Dr. Grunlan also holds joint appointments in Chemistry and Materials Science and Engineering. He is an Editor for Journal of Materials Science, Associate Editor for Green Materials and serves on the International Advisory Board for Macromolecular Rapid Communications and Macromolecular Materials and Engineering.