Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology, Department of Reaction Engineering and Catalysis

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Main research field

Reaction Engineering, Catalysis, Biotechnology, Environmental Engineering/Technology

Specific research areas

biocatalysis, biotransformations, bioseparation processes, water treatment, environmental catalysis, chemical engineering in environmental protection, analysis and modelling of the chemical reactors,

Techniques/methods

Mathematical modeling, Experimental and model based optimization, Kinetic measurements, Simulation of process by ChemCAD, Pinch Technology, HEN Design, MEN Design, HPLC chromatography, GC and GC-MS chromatography, TOC, AAS, Protein purification

Equipment

HPLC, GC, GC-MS, UV-VIS spectrophotometer, Microreactor system, Ultrafiltration membrane reactors, Bioreactors, Adiabatic batch reactor, RTD modelling system, Various size and shape moulding systems, Wicke-Kallenbach difussion cell, UV-VIS spectrophotometer, AAS, High pressure Parr reactor, etc.

Technology keywords

  • Process Plant Engineering
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Plastics and Rubber related to Chemical Technology and engineering
  • Process optimisation, waste heat utilisation
  • Mathematical modelling
  • Enzymology/Protein Engineering/Fermentation

Services offered

  • Teaching and Training
  • Quality control
  • Preparation of environmental or energy related studies
  • Project documentation and solutions
  • Technical proposals

Market sectors

  • Alternative Energy
  • Commodity Chemicals
  • Specialty Chemicals
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Support Services
  • Health Care Equipment & Services
  • Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology
  • Gas, Water & Multiutilities

Short summary (English)

I. Prof. Vasic-Rački's research group is mainly interested in the four areas of applied biocatalysis - isolated enzymes or the whole cells as biocatalysts, fermentation technology and micro reactor technology. Application of the methodology of chemical engineering at the mathematical modeling and optimization of biocatalytic processes are the main strategies in all investigations. Theoretical modeling of enzyme kinetics and reactors can be used to find the optimal operation points, to create an optimal environment for biocatalysts and to optimize the productivity of the process. Therefore, modeling of enzyme reaction kinetics and reactors as a tool of enzyme reaction engineering plays an important role in the development of enzyme-catalyzed reaction for large-scale production. The group has extensive experience in the synthesis of chiral compounds such as amino acids, hydroxy-acids, alcohols etc., which is catalyzed by oxidoreductases with cofactor regeneration, as well as mathematical modeling and optimization of processes for these compounds. II. Catalysis is the backbone of the chemical industry. It is also an integral part in some of our most important pollution control and environmental cleanup processes. Because of its substantial impact on the global economy and environmental protection, catalysis remains an active and vital area of research and development. Prof. Zrnčević's research group interest is in the identification of catalyst design variable in order to obtain more active, selective and stabile catalysts for development more sustainable and less damaging manufacturing processes and in modification and reconstruction of existing plant to solving environmental problems and reducing utility costs. The range of activities cover synthesis and characterization, studies of interrelationship between structural and chemical properties of solid materials and their catalytic properties, tailoring of the textural properties, kinetics, selection of suitable reactor system, the optimization of heat and mass transfer involved in the catalytic process and mass and energy integration in production systems. The research activities will provide a basis for the advancement of processes that make efficient use of energy and raw materials with minimal impact on the environment. Also catalytic solutions will be developed for the abatement of pollutants that are detrimental to the environment. III. The key expertise of prof. Gomzi/Tomašić research group is analysis and modelling of chemical reactors used for various chemical processes. Mathematical models of multiphase chemical reactors are usually represented by a large system of specific equations with a large number of parameters. Thus, solution of these models requires an accurate estimation of all these parameters and an appropriate numerical algorithm for the solution of model equations. Due to a wide variety of the reactor types, their construction and operational constrains, an universal simulation software has not been available up to now. The research activities cover analysis and modelling of the reactors applied for different purposes: a) in reinforcement of various polymers, especially of the networking polyethylene during vulcanization and production of power cables, b) for advanced desulphurization and their integration into other process units, c) advanced bioreactors for composting of municipal waste, d) monolithic, photocatalytic and another types of advanced reactors for removal of organic air impurities, etc.

Short summary (Croatian)

I. Osnovni istraživački interesi grupe prof. Vasić-Rački su u području primijenjene biokatalize, pri čemu se za provedbu biotransformacija kao biokatalizatori koriste izolirani enzimi i cijele stanice mikroorganizama, a reakcije se provode u makro- i mikroreaktorima. Primjena metodologije kemijskog inženjerstva, matematičko modeliranje procesa i optimiranje biokatalitičkih procesa su osnovne tehnike koje se koriste u istraživanjima, Kinetički modeli reakcija kataliziranih biokatalizatorima, te odgovarajuće bilance tvari primjenjuju se za određivanje optimalnih procesnih uvjeta u svrhu postizanja maksimalne produktivnosti procesa. Ova metodologija, pokazala se kao izrazito uspješan pristup u razvoju enzimatski kataliziranih reakcija u svrhu njihove provedbe u uvećanom mjerilu. Grupa ima bogato iskustvo u provedbi sinteze kiralnih komponenata kao što su različite amino kiseline, hidroksidne kiseline, alkoholi i drugi spojevi. Najveći broj ovih reakcija proveden je primjenom oksidoreduktaza uz regeneraciju koenzima, a za sve analizirane sustave razvijeni su matematički modeli procesa i optimirani procesni uvjeti. II. Kataliza je kamen temeljac kemijske i srodnih industrija, ali i integralni dio mnogih značajnijih procesa kojima se uklanjaju za okoliš štetne emisije. Zbog svog velikog utjecaja na globalnu ekonomiju i zaštitu okoliša, kataliza i nadalje predstavlja značajan poticaj za istraživanja u tom području. Stoga je osnovni istraživački interes grupe u identifikaciji ključnih varijabli potrebnih za izvedbu aktivnijih, selektivnijih i stabilnijih katalizatora kao i u modifikaciji i rekonstrukciji procesa s ciljem rješavanja problema vezanih uz zaštitu okoliša i smanjenja troškova energenata. Aktivnosti koje to omogućavaju su: sinteza i karakterizacija katalizatora, izučavanje zavisnosti između strukturnih i kemijskih značajki katalizatora i njihovih katalitičkih značajki, oblikovanje katalizatora, istraživanje kinetike i mehanizma reakcija, optimiranje procesa prijenosa tvari i topline u katalitičkom procesu, izbor odgovarajućeg reaktorskog sustava, te integracija mase i energije u proizvodnim sustavima. Spomenutim istraživanjima stvoriti će se osnove za izvedbu novih, te unapređenje postojećih katalizatora koji pridonose razvoju katalitičkih procesa za uklanjanje za okoliš štetnih tvari, te razvoju ekološki prihvatljivih procesa. III. Istraživačka ekspertiza istraživačke grupe prof. Gomzi/Tomašić je naliza i modeliranje kemijskih reaktora koji se koriste u različitim kemijskim procesima. Matematički modeli višefaznih kemijskih reaktora obično su predstavljeni sustavima speficičnih jednadžbi koje sadrže velik broj parametara. Zbog toga rješenje takvih modela zahtjeva preciznu procjenu parametara i podrazumijeva primjenu odgovarajućih numeričkih algoritama za rješavanje jednadžbi modela. Uslijed različitih vrsta reaktora, različitih izvedbi i ograničenja radnim uvjetima ne postoji jedinstveni program za njihovu simulaciju. Istraživačke aktivnosti obuhvaćaju analizu i modeliranje reaktora koji se rabe za različite svrhe: a) za pojačavanje polimera, naročito pri umrežavanju polietilena tijekom vulkanizacije i proizvodnje kablova velike snage, b) za naprednu desulfurizaciju i integraciju u druge procesne jedinice, c) napredne biorekatore za kompostiranje komunalnog otpada, d) monolitnih, fotokatalitičkih i drugih tipova naprednih reaktora za uklanjanje organskih nečištoća iz zraka, itd.

Last update: 31.10.2014. 11:56:20

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