Prof. Dr. Ulrich Tallarek
Porous Media; Morphology;
Transport Phenomena; High-Performance Computing
Full Professor - Materials and Interface SciencePhone: +49-(0)6421-28-25727
Ms. Kirsten BubenheimPhone: +49-(0)6421-28-27061
Department of Chemistry, Philipps-Universität Marburg,
Hans-Meerwein-Strasse, 35032 Marburg, Germany
Our research interests include the basic understanding of analytical methods, from the mechanisms of analyte-surface interactions to macroscale transport behavior. This approach relies on the discovery of the fundamental material morphology – surface functionality – mass/charge transport relationships. It requires complementary simulation methods to capture the widely different spatio-temporal scales involved in analyte transport (e.g., molecular dynamics simulations of solvent structure and mobility in micro- and mesopores; lattice-Boltzmann method for simulation of fluid flow in the macropore space of porous media; random-walk particle-tracking for the analysis of advective-diffusive transport; stochastic approach for analyte sorption at functionalized surfaces) as well as the precise physical reconstruction of porous media, e.g., with confocal laser scanning microscopy or electron microscopy. A variety of experimental chromatographic analysis methods are used to complement the modeled data for morphological and functional optimization.
More specifically, our activities cover analytical and physico-chemical research on experimental, theoretical, and numerical aspects of the hierarchical transport in porous media and functional devices, with emphasis on separation science. The investigated materials are (i) functionalized channel networks and membranes used, e.g., in preconcentration units, reactors, or desalination devices, and (ii) particulate and monolithic adsorbents employed as fixed-bed separation units. Our research investigates closely related topics and coupled transports with increasing complexity to achieve a thorough understanding of morphology, functionality, and macroscale transport. This comprises the reconstruction of monolithic and particulate bed morphology, the analysis of disorder of spatial random systems and its consequences for hydrodynamic dispersion, the characterization of the involved surfaces and interfaces, consideration of (electro)chemical reactions, the transient and stationary dynamics of the fluid flow fields, as well as the resulting (electro)hydrodynamics. Experimental analytical separation methods are combined with direct imaging techniques and advanced numerical simulation approaches for identification and analysis of key transport phenomena. The gained knowledge on how microscopic structural details and mesoscopic interrelations affect molecular transport allows us to better analyze, understand, and optimize separations traditionally observed on a macroscopic scale.
Key Words: Porous media; Transport phenomena; Materials, separation, and interface science; Quantitative morphology-transport relationships: disorder-diffusion-dispersion correlations; Reconstruction of porous media (monoliths, packed beds, membranes); Three-dimensional simulation of flow and coupled mass-charge transport; Lattice-Boltzmann method; High-performance computing; Slurry packing process; Bed morphology; Structure and dynamics of fluids in mesopores; Molecular dynamics simulations.