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CEAM Research Seminar

May 6, 2022, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

The School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials invites you for their research seminar on “Technology Disruption on Earth and in Space by Process Intensification towards Industrial Transformation”. The seminar will be held both face to face and online, at Engineering South (S112) and via zoom (see website below, password 993545).

ABSTRACT: Technology disruption is often the answer to major societal or environmental challenge, transforms industries and allows us to redefine circularity. Covid has made us aware how critical it can be if global supply chains are interrupted, leading to a come back to resilient, self-sufficient and local manufacturing. The presentation will cover suites of projects and disruptive technologies of the Hessel group’s current research foci frame on Earth and in Space.

On Earth, energy and critical materials supply chains are nowadays majorly at risk and ask for new supply chains, such as ‘fertiliser-at-farm’ manufacturing. The economic feasibility of a combined thermal and non-thermal plasma processing is promoted by the internalisation of environmental benefits of its products life cycles. In this sense, a life cycle assessment of different ammonia production pathways is performed in order to quantify, from cradle-to-utilisation, credits of avoided emissions in the production, storage and transportation phases, by-products utilisation, use of local renewable resources, reduction of product wastes, and soil beneficiation.

Space laboratories are the ultimate disruptive barrier and the modern playground for out-of-box thinking. This talk will present the use of flow chemistry for asteroid mineral processing and mooncrust phosphate leaching, an on-satellite self-priming chip for space chemistry, and the manufacture of nanoemulsions to form astronaut designer beverages. It will also present engineered closed, circular life-environmental support (ECCLES) systems, such as a ‘space greenhouse’, combining circularly ‘astrofood’ manufacture, and phytomining in a space habitat. Future work will cover physical and digital twins of plant growth systems for and in space. Finally, the first Australian-led ISS-NASA experiment on developing cosmic-radiation stable medicinal formulations will be presented.

OUR SPEAKER: Prof Volker Hessel‘s research focuses on new continuous-flow and plasma-catalytic process concepts as well as application thereof in health, chemistry, energy, space, and agrifood. He is the Research Director of Adelaide’s Andy Thomas Centre of Space Resources and part-time professor at the University of Warwick/UK.


May 6, 2022
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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