Kettering University, USA
Steven Nartker is an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering department at Kettering University. Currently he is working on developing membrane separation technologies that can be used in the purification of methane produced from anaerobic digestion. The successful implementation of low cost and energy efficient membranes will lead to an improved biogas generation facility. This research is focused on identification of membrane materials, construction of polymeric membranes using nanoscale production techniques and characterization of materials and devices. Electrospinning technology will be explored as a technique to prepare fibrous membrane materials as well as materials suitable for sensor and battery applications.
Pure cellulose nitrate (CN) and blends of cellulose nitrate and poly (caprolactone) (PCL) were electrospun to form nonwoven mats. Mixed solvent systems of tetrahydrofuran (THF) and N,N-dimethylformamide were employed. The concentrations were varied to obtain sub-micron and nanoscale fiber mats. These fiber mats were analyzed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), contact angle analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). The fiber morphology, surface chemistry and contact angle data show that these electrospun materials exhibit promising applications in the biomedical field.