(337bw) Complex Fluids and Transport Phenomena in the Pharmaceutical and Process Development Industry | AIChE

(337bw) Complex Fluids and Transport Phenomena in the Pharmaceutical and Process Development Industry


Yang, A. - Presenter, Carnegie Mellon University
Garoff, S., Carnegie Mellon University
Khair, A., Carnegie Mellon University
Tilton, R., Carnegie Mellon University
Research Interests

Complex fluids and colloidal systems are ubiquitous in process development and pharmaceutical manufacturing. Many complex fluids are involved in the coating, formulation, and delivery of actives. My research interests are in colloidal systems and complex fluids, specifically in their transport and formulation. Throughout my PhD I have gained a firm basis in the fundamental physics of these systems and have developed and used characterization tools, creative experimental design, and detailed problem solving to advance the field further. My goal for the next step in my career is to apply these skills to the many interesting pharmaceutical and process development applications that rely on and involve complex fluids and materials.

In my research I designed and fabricated microfluidic devices to measure colloidal transport through an electrokinetic phenomenon called diffusiophoresis. Diffusiophoresis is a colloidal transport mechanism that is driven only by a solute gradient. This is advantageous for driving particle transport in systems where a solute gradient naturally exists (typical of many biological systems) or where external driving fields can be costly or intrusive. Currently, diffusiophoresis and most colloidal transport is only well understood for simple material systems. My research focuses on transport of colloids in more industrially relevant materials. Such materials include surfactants, complexing polymers, and polyelectrolytes. By studying these systems, I gained a better understanding of the effect of more complex formulations on colloidal transport and determined which properties of these systems lead to better or worse transport. Along with the microfluidic experiments I developed numerical modeling schemes and performed extensive experimental characterization of the materials to elucidate their effect on the material formulations and transport.

Throughout my research process, I established clear research goals to advance the project and the fundamental understanding of these systems and designed precise experiments to address each goal. As a result, I broke down the properties of complex but more industrially relevant material systems into their fundamental effects on colloidal systems to help influence how they are used in industry. My career goal is to transfer these organizational skills and the research tools I developed in my PhD to my next research position. I am excited to utilize my overall ability to effectively design and interpret experiments, problem solve, and advance the complex fluids research field to help me contribute effectively to my future research career in industry.