The department is actively engaged in research in a number of areas, such as, risk & hazard analysis for chemical, petroleum, petrochemical & allied industries, development of low cost treatment technology, life cycle assessment, biological and physico-chemical treatment of wastewaters, and VOC control technology.
A number of M.Tech./Ph.Ds have been produced in the area of wet air oxidation, decolourisation and detoxification of wastewater, electrocoagulation and electro-chemical treatment of industrial wastewater, automobile exhaust control, catalyst development, VOC control by biofiltration, modeling and simulation, design of wastewater treatment systems and air pollution control equipment, solid waste management, etc. The department has gained considerable expertise in the treatment of high-strength and toxic wastewaters. The academic and research capabilities have been enriched through our M.Tech and Ph.D programmes.
The department has been working in the area of biochemical engineering for the development of new chemicals and products, basic engineering aspects in the design of bioreactors, biogasification of industrial and domestic wastes and cattle dungs, biosorption of toxic and volatile matter, etc. The Department has produced a number of M.Tech and Ph.D theses in various areas of biochemical engineering, including process development and environmental biotechnology. A number of biogas projects sponsored by the Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources (MNES), Government of India.
A very active and intensive research in the area of thermal processing of biomass materials and industrial wastes is being carried out in the department. A number of agri and forestry wastes like bagasse, rice husk, saw dust, pine needles, etc. and industrial waste like press mud from sugar mills have been used in thermal processing. Several reactor configurations like downdraft gasifiers, fluidized bed reactors and fixed bed reactors have been used in lab-scale experiments.
The department is actively working on the thermal processing of biomass to derive gaseous and liquid fuels and char in downdraft reactor and fixed and fluidized bed reactors. Basic research to understand the fluidization characteristics of different biomass materials in different size ranges, with and without solid carriers, is intensively pursued. Work on the kinetics of slow and fast pyrolysis and oxidation characteristics of biomass and industrial wastes is also being carried out.
Currently the department is running a M.Tech programme in Computer Aided Process Plant Design and working in the area of modeling of thermal cracking processes, fire propagation and mitigations, high pressure catalytic reactors, immobilized whole cell bioreactors, CFD based modeling and analysis of chemical reactors, separation systems and thermal crackers, multiple effect evaporators, heat exchangers, etc.
The department is actively engaged in the area of novel catalyst development for use in environmental catalysis. A number of catalysts have been developed for automobile exhaust, control, wet air oxidation and thermolysis. We are closely collaborating with the Department of Chemistry in this area.