Student NameMarshall Cohen
Faculty Mentor NameJuan C. Nino
CollegeCollege of Engineering
MajorMaterials Science and Engineering
MinorBusiness Administration
Research InterestsPolymers, renewable energy, semiconductors.
Academic AwardsAssembly for Action Scholar
OrganizationsMaterials Advantage, Alpha Sigma Mu, Beta Theta Pi, Dance Marathon, Green Greeks.
Hobbies and InterestsWrestling, renewable energy, surfing, hiking.

Research Project

Functionalized Nanocellulose for Advanced Opioid Sequestration Systems

The concentration of opioids in drinking water has increased over the past year. While the current methods of water treatment can remove some of the opioids, they still leave around 10% of the concentration in water. Because of this, a new method must be developed to sequester these molecules and make drinking water safer. Nanocellulose is a polymer made from cellulose, an abundant and renewable resource. Nanocellulose can be functionalized relatively easy, allowing modifications to its behavior. In this project we are proposing to use sulfonation to introduce functional groups to the nanocellulose that will allow it to better adsorb opioids. We will test the ability of the nanocellulose filters to extract simple amines at first, but then move on to more complex amines and then finally opioids. This new approach to removing opioids from water can help in preventing the numerous long-term side effects that come from drinking water contaminated with these drugs.