Two of NJIT's most advanced research centers -- the Center for Membrane Technologies and the Polymer Processing Institute are collaborating on an NSF-funded project to develop a technique for making nanoprous membranes without using solvents that produce contaminated wastewater. Kamalesh Sirkar, distinguished professor of chemical engineering and director of the membrane center, and Marino Xanthos, professor of chemical engineering and research director of the polymer institute,  principal investigator and co-PI, respectively, are leading the investigation team.

Membrane separation is a technology of increasing importance in a wide variety of industries from pharmaceuticals to food processing to environmental engineering. Read an article about membrane technologies in NJIT Alumni Magazine. NJIT researchers hold numerous patents for membrane advances for protein purification, removing carbon dioxide and other gases from air, and the removal of toxins from water. As the pores in the membranes get smaller, the level of purity that can be achieved in fields such as water treatment, or food and beverage manufacture.

The Polymer Processing Institute, an independent research corporation headquartered at NJIT, has as its main research focus is the modification of polymers through processing into special property, high-value products that are suitable for the medical, health care, automotive, electronics, construction, and packaging industries.The team is studying polymeric membranes with functional inorganic and organic fillers of appropriate shape and size to promote porosity at the nano level.