Mohammed Abdul Jawad

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Zhiping Lai of KAUST Receives AIChE’s 2020 Industrial Gases Award

Zhiping Lai of KAUST Receives AIChE’s 2020 Industrial Gases Award

Zhiping Z. Lai, Professor of Chemical Engineering at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Saudi Arabia has been co-recipient of American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ (AIChE’s) 2020 Industrial Gases Award.
The Institute Award for Excellence in Industrial Gases Technology recognizes sustained excellence in contributions to the advancement of technology in the production, distribution and application of industrial gases.

The 2020 Industrial Gases Award is being presented jointly to Hae-Kwon Jeong, Professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering at Texas A & M University and Zhiping Z. Lai, Professor of Chemical Engineering at KAUST.

Dr. Lai and Dr. Jeong are being recognized ‘for pioneering contributions and sustained excellence in the field of metal-organic framework membranes for gas separations development.’

As the program director of the university's chemical engineering program, Lai offers students opportunities to develop real-world solutions to global challenges by performing rigorous coursework studies and cutting-edge research in chemical engineering.

“Chemical engineers are destined to continue making vital contributions to our future lives.”

While reflecting on his work behind the award, Dr. Lai said:

“I have never felt so excited to be a chemical engineer as I do today, as I consider the potential impact of saving up to 90% of energy in the future chemical industry by employing membranes to replace existing separation technologies. I am often fascinated by the beauty of porous material structures that offer unprecedented opportunities for engineering applications. Chemical engineers are destined to continue making vital contributions to our future lives.”

Dr. Lai’s research mainly focuses on development of high-performance membranes out of ordered porous materials such as zeolites, metal organic frameworks, carbon nanotubes, covalent organic frameworks and porous polymers. The applications of these membranes are targeted to industrially important and energy-intensive separation systems including hydrocarbon mixtures, natural gas upgrading, seawater desalination, organic solvent nanofiltration, hemodialysis, and waste-water treatments. 

Lai is also interested in synthesizing nanostructured materials for applications in lithium-sulfur batteries, low-grade heat recovery, catalysis, and chemical sensors. 

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About AIChE: AIChE is a professional society of more than 60,000 members in more than 110 countries. Its members work in corporations, universities and government using their knowledge of chemical processes to develop safe and useful products for the benefit of society. Through its varied programs, AIChE continues to be a focal point for information exchange on the frontier of chemical engineering research in such areas as nanotechnology, sustainability, hydrogen fuels, biological and environmental engineering, and chemical plant safety and security. 

Source: 'Zhiping Lai receives AIChE’s 2020 Industrial Gases Award' - December 23, 2020 - Additional Input from: AIChE

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