Modeling on Conjugated Porous Polymers
Two main aspects will be studied theoretically. On the one hand, the designed conjugated porous polymer structure will be modeled by means of force-field methodologies. On the hand, electronic structure calculations, mainly based on density functional theory, will be performed in order to determine molecular properties including optical features as well as the specific photocatalytic reaction mechanism. Fundamentaly, it will be studied solar fuels production by artificial photosynthesis processes as sustainable energy source.
Sustainable Water Technology and Water-Energy Nexus
Energy-efficient desalination and water treatment technologies play a critical role in augmenting freshwater resources without placing an excessive strain on limited energy supplies. In this sense, the high energy efficiency and often superior efficacy of membrane-based technologies have gained widespread implementation in various water treatment processes. Thus, new processes has been proposed merging areas such as biotechnology, energy productions or nutrient recovery with membrane-based technology. Our research group is fully devoted to merge membrane technology with other areas such as biotechnology, renewable energy and resources recovery to develop the next generation of hybrid technologies for water resource management, sustainable desalination, brine valorization and salinity gradient energy production, while increasing the impact of innovation in the water sector.
Harvesting energy from natural environments using electroactive bacteria
Our research group is fully devoted to merge environmental microbiology and electrochemical tools to restore soil and sediments polluted with organics compounds, while harvesting clean energy from enviroments. We truly believe that investing time in studying the basic aspects of this novel field will accelerate the design and implementation of innovative applications able to make Earth a better place to live in.
Our activities are mainly focus on: 1. designing and constructing electrochemical devices for harvesting electrical current from microbial metabolism in polluted enviroments like soils and sediments and 2. Designing strategies for cleaning-up polluted soils and sediments using electroactive microorganisms stimulated with electrochemical tools.
Increasing the sustainability of food chain by obtaining bioactive substances from agrofood industry residues
Food processing activities in Europe produce large amounts of byproducts and waste. The removal of these residues causes environmental problems that are heterogeneous due to the large variety of different waste materials produced by different sources. Such waste is only partially valorized at different levels (spread on land, animal feed, composting). However, the waste of these residues constitutes a loss of resources since they contain valuable substances. Vegetable and fruits processing byproducts and waste might provide value-added natural bioactive substances with a variety of activities having a high interest for the pharmaceutical, cosmetic and food industries. The development of strategies enabling the revalorization and reusing of agrofood industry residues to obtain bioactive substances will contribute to the sustainability of the food chain and to the implementation of the so-called clean technologies or waste-free technologies.