Kamalesh Sirkar, distinguished professor of chemical engineering, is partnering with an international company to develop a new membrane-based apparatus to remove carbon dioxide from gas mixtures used in anesthesia. The breathing apparatus used in medical procedures involving anesthesia uses a special mix of gases. As the equipment is used, the patient's breathing introduces carbon dioxide into the mix. In order to reuse the mixture, the carbon dioxide needs to be separated out. The project will develop a specific liquid membrane to separate the gases.
Dr. Sirkar, who directs NJIT's Center for Membrane Technologies, has extensive expertise in membrane design, with more than 20 patents. Read an article about his work in NJIT Alumni Magazine. Most recently he developed a new filtration system to enable scientists and engineers to separate and purify two different kinds of proteins having relatively close molecular weight. Until now, doing such separations with membrane filtration was impossible. This research was reported in the June 20, 2004 issue of Biotechnology and Bioengineering. Last year, he patented a method for the separation of carbon dioxide from a gas mixture.