The basic concepts of sustainability will be discussed, as relevant to the general definition of sustainability (introduced by the UN Brundtland Commission in 1987), and to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of 2015. The discussion will include elements relevant to materials manufacturing, chemical processes, energy production, waste minimization, and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Emphasis will also be given to equity, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace. The students will also learn to quantify the environmental impact of materials, products and processes via the implementation of a life cycle assessment.
Students enrolled in this course will understand the importance of water and that of water quality for the sustainability of industrial processes. The course will provide an overview of water reclamation and reuse, as well as a survey on water quality related to industrial processes (e.g., mining). Wastewater characteristics will be reviewed, in connection with the conventional approaches for wastewater treatment processes. Emerging materials and technologies under development for water remediation will be discussed, with focus, for example, in technologies developed to extract valuable compounds (e.g., rare earth minerals) from contaminated water.
This course will cover concepts of sustainable design of chemical processes, including issues related to energy usage and GHG emissions, long-term availability of raw materials, and changes to process design that can lead to sustainable outcomes, including ‘green’ chemistry options. Upon completion of the course, the students will learn how to analyse flowsheets, quantify the environmental impact of a process, and identify potentially hazardous situations.
This course provides an opportunity for students to develop skills necessary to understand the basic principles of polymer life cycles, polymer properties and environmental footprints, manufacturing, design guidelines for sustainability, and recycling/upcycling. This course will provide an overview of the contradictory positive and negative characteristics of polymers with respect to sustainability. The course will also discuss conventional processing and additive manufacturing methods for producing polymeric parts and goods. The history of sustainability issues and its controversy concerning polymers (especially plastics) will be exemplified. Additionally, the course will cover the need for green that is forcing recycling and upcycling of polymers to become industrially feasible.
The Challenge consists primarily of a group research project on a topic relevant to the MS in Sustainability. Projects will be offered by Faculty members in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering. The instructor will coordinate the activities and assign some individual tasks. Specialistic presentations will be offered to support the projects development. Lectures will be offered on a variety of topics related to the wide concept of sustainability as applied to chemical engineering, energy, materials, and advanced manufacturing. Then, the students will form groups of 3-4 students, preferentially from different backgrounds, and they will complete an independent study on topics of our choice. The outcome will be similar to a review paper. Possible projects could be, e.g., recycling of asphalt, technoeconomic analysis of CO2 sequestration, cradle-to-cradle design of materials, etc. This dissertation will demonstrate how to combine material learned from all the courses offered within the MS in Sustainability to ensure progress.
In this course, students will learn to quantify pros and cons of cutting-edge technologies available for capturing, storing, and utilizing CO2 (CCUS). They will become familiar with technological developments in catalysis (for carbon utilization), materials design (carbon capture), and sequestration (geological repositories, hydrates, mineralization, direct capture from air). The graduates will quantify capital and operational costs associated with these technologies.
This course offers students the opportunity to master fundamentals and sustainable aspects of gas and liquid separations and emergent technologies for the prevention and remediation of liquid contamination. The course will cover existing technologies, as well as current cutting- edge research in these fields, with an emphasis on the potential applicability in the field.
Students will master the differences between management and leadership, will be able to assemble teams based on main personality traits, will effectively design risk mitigation strategies, and will be proficient in managing financial resources. Invited speakers from academia and industry will allow the graduates to understand that effective management/leadership depends on the circumstances.
Students will be able to plan and assess the efficacy of business strategies to ensure the sustainability of commercial operations. In particular, the graduates will be able to (a) Achieve and maintain the social license to operate; (b) Operate within the boundaries of environmental regulations; and (c) Promote the goals of a diverse, inclusive, and equitable work force.
In this course, students will master methods for predicting capital and operational costs of chemical plants, approaches for quantifying uncertainties and how such uncertainty could affect the profitability of industrial operations, and the most common approaches for decision making in industry, with their pros and cons. Industrial speakers will provide a framework for the material discussed in class.