Yoshiaki Kawajiri

Georgia Tech Energy Faculty
Associate Professor
(404) 894-2856
Research Area: 
Separations Technology

Dr. Kawajiri joined the Georgia Tech faculty in 2008 after completing his Ph.D. study at Carnegie Mellon University and post-doctoral study at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics of Complex Systems in Magdeburg, Germany as an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow. He had previously engaged in research and development of separation processes at Organo Corporation, Japan for four years. Dr. Kawajiri's research interests are in the interdisciplinary area of process systems engineering and separation engineering. In particular, his interests include dynamic optimization, control, and parameter estimation techniques applied to novel separation processes.

What brought you to Georgia Tech?
Georgia Tech has a large and diverse faculty in chemical engineering, in particular in separations and process systems engineering. Close and intensive collaborations within Georgia Tech were very attractive.

What excites you most about your area of research?
We propose solutions to many challenging problems. We develop and apply state-of-the-art techniques in systems engineering and separations. By carrying out interdisciplinary research, we work with people who have different expertise to solve the same problem. It is exciting to get to know experts in other fields and learning their research.

Energy applications of your area of research?
My research addresses challenges in mathematical modeling and optimization for cyclic chemical processes. We are tackling many energy related problems, including biofuel production, carbon capture from flue gas, water splitting by solar energy, and nuclear fuel processing. Our approach is to apply modeling and computational optimization approaches to design efficient energy production processes.

How can effective integration of adsorption/separations technologies improve the power
conversion process?

Separations are critical steps in most chemical energy processes. For example, in biofuel production processes, often the target compounds are found among many impurities, which would inhibit efficient production. To make the power conversion process more efficient, such impurities must be removed. Adsorption is a powerful technique that selectively removes impurities and recovers the target compounds.

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