Kamalesh K. Sirkar, PhD, is a Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering and the Foundation Professor in Membrane Separations at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). Sirkar is an internationally renowned expert in membrane separation technologies. He is the inventor of the commercialized membrane-based solvent extraction technology for which Hoechst Celanese received Honorable Mention in the 1991 Kirkpatrick Award. He has pioneered among others the notion of microporous membranes as membrane contactors of two immiscible fluid phases as well as the contained liquid membrane.
Sirkar was a professor of Chemical Engineering at IIT, Kanpur as well as at Stevens Institute of Technology. He has received a number of honorary degrees and awards including the 2005 AIChE Institute Award for Excellence in Industrial Gases Technology and the 2008 Clarence Gerhold Award of the Separations Division of AIChE.
He is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Current Opinion in Chemical Engineering. He was also the editor of the Elsevier Series in Membrane Science and Technology during 2005-2011. He served as an Associate Editor of Separation Science and Technology during 2005-2011. He is serving/has served as a member of the editorial boards of J. Membrane Science, I&EC Research, and Separation Science and Technology. Sirkar is a co-editor of the widely used Membrane Handbook. He has authored 180 refereed publications, 19 book chapters, 29 US patents and over 335 presentations. He was the President of the North American Membrane Society during 1998-1999 and a Director of the Separations Division of AIChE during 1993-1996. He is the Executive Director for the period 2010-2015 of the Membrane Science, Engineering and Technology Center (MAST), which is a NSF I/UCRC.
- Indian Institute of Technology at Kharagpur, B.Tech., 1963.
- University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, M.S., 1966.
- University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Ph.D., 1969.
Awards and Honors
- M. Engg., Honoris Causa, Stevens Institute of Technology, 1987;
- Kirkpatrick Award, 1991, Honorable Mention to Hoechst Celanese for Membrane Solvent Extraction with direct mention of K.K. Sirkar, the inventor of this technique;
- Professional and Scholarly Publishing Award for the Most Outstanding Engineering Work in 1992 awarded to W.S. Winston Ho and K.K. Sirkar for the “Membrane Handbook” in February 1993;
- Harlan J. Perlis Award for Research at NJIT, 1997;
- Honorary Fellow, Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers, 2001;
- Themis Medicare Chemcon Distinguished Speaker Award, CHEMCON 2001, December 20, 2001;
- Co-winner of Graduate Research Paper Award in Membrane Separations, Separations Division of AIChE, 2004;
- Co-winner of Graduate Research Paper Award in Crystallization and Evaporation, Separations Division of AIChE, 2004;
- 2005 AIChE Institute Award for Excellence in Industrial Gases Technology, October 30, 2005.
- 2006 Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award in the Environmental Category of the Research and Development Council of NJ, November 2, 2006;
- Co-winner of Graduate Research Paper Award in Extraction, Separations Division of AIChE, 2006, November 11, 2006;
- Clarence Gerhold Award of the Separations Division of AIChE, November 17, 2008; American Institute of Chemical Engineers organized two special sessions to honor Professor Kamalesh Sirkar´s contributions to Membrane Science and Technology at the Annual AIChE meeting (Centennial) at Philadelphia, PA on November 17, 2008;
- Fellow, AAAS, December 19, 2008
- 2009 NJIT Excellence in Research Medal; award lecture at www.njit.edu/overseersmedals
- Innovators Award by the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame (NJHOF), October 22, 2009.
Courses I Teach
- Membrane separation techniques and technologies for solving separation problems in chemical, environmental, food, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries (involving both gas mixtures and liquid solutions)
- Develop new and improved membrane separation techniques and membrane structures, characterize them, model membrane separation performance and apply them to problem solving
- Membranes for selective removal of CO2 or VOCs from air/N2
- Fabrication of membranes for UF, NF and LPRO processes for water treatment and solvent processing
- Porous membrane-based equilibrium contacting processes,membrane distillation
- Membrane reactors, fuel cells
- Fermentation-membrane separation processes; membrane-based bioseparations
- Development of novel membrane-based controlled release techniques
"Chromatographic Method for Biomolecule Purification using a Hollow-Fiber Membrane Module," Robert G. Luo and Kamalesh K. Sirkar, US Patent 6,022,477, February 8, 2000.
"Controlled Release Device Based on Aqueous-Organic Partitioning in Porous Membranes", K. Sirkar, S. Farrell and R. Basu, US Patent 6,110,481, August 29, 2000.
"Gas Separation Using Hollow Fiber Contained Liquid Membrane," K.K. Sirkar, U.S. Patent 6,156,096 December 5, 2000.
"Apparatus for Removal of Volatile Organic Compounds from Gaseous Mixtures," K.K. Sirkar, S. Majumdar and T. Poddar, U.S. Patent 6,165,253, December 26, 2000.
"Improved Membrane Separation of Carbon Dioxide", K.K. Sirkar, A.S. Kovvali and H. Chen; U.S. Patent 6,635,103, October 21, 2003.
"Preparation of Microporous Films from Immiscible Blends via Melt Processing and Stretching", C. Chandavasu, M. Xanthos, K. Sirkar; U.S. Patent 6,824,680, November 30, 2004.
"Method and Apparatus for Isolation and Purification of Biomolecules", K.K. Sirkar, R.G. Luo, Y. Xu and X.P. Dai, U.S. Patent 6,986,847, January 17, 2006.
Systems and Methods for Selective Separation of Gaseous Mixtures Using Hollow Fibers", K.K. Sirkar, U.S. Patent 7, 318, 854, January 15, 2008.
"Highly Selective Membrane Systems and Methods for Use in Protein Ultrafiltration", K. K. Sirkar, and M. Feins, US Patent, 7,497,950, March 3, 2009.
"Solid Hollow Fiber Coolding Crystallization Systems and Methods", K. K. Sirkar, and D. Zarkadas,US Patent 7,754,083,B2, July 13, 2010.
"Antisolvent Crystallization in Porous Hollow Fiber Devices and Methods of Use Thereof", K. K. Sirkar and D. Zarkadas, US Patent 7,811,381, October 10, 2010.
"Iontophoretic Drug Delivery System based on Conductive Polyaniline Membrane", K.K. Sirkar and Qiuxi Fan, US Patent 8,036,738, October 11, 2011.
"Desalination Devices and Systems using Porous Hydrophobic Hollow Fibers and Hydrophobic Porous Coatings", K.K. Sirkar and B. Li, US Patent 8,167,143 BS, May 1, 2012.
H. Chen, A.S. Kovvali, S. Majumdar and K.K. Sirkar, “Selective CO2 Separation from CO2-N2 Mixtures by Immobilized Carbonate-glycerol Membranes”, I&EC Res., 38(9), 3489-3498 (1999).
K.K. Sirkar, P.V. Shanbhag and A. S. Kovvali, "Membrane in a Reactor: A Functional Perspective, I&EC Res., 38(10), 3715-3737 (1999).
S. Farrell and K.K. Sirkar, "A Mathematical Model of an Aqueous-organic Partition-based Controlled Release System using Microporous Membranes," J. Controlled Release, 61 (3), 345-360 (1999).
J. Whu, B.C. Baltzis and K. K. Sirkar, "Modeling of Nanofiltration-assisted Organic Synthesis," J. Membrane Sci., 163(12), 319-331 (1999).
X. P. Dai, R.G. Luo and K. K. Sirkar, "An Integrated Process for Biomolecule Isolation and Purification", Biotechnol. Prog., 15 (12), 1095-1105 (1999).
D. Bhaumik, S. Majumdar and K.K. Sirkar, "Pilot-plant and Laboratory Studies on Vapor Permeation Removal of VOCs from Waste Gas using Silicone-coated Hollow Fibers," J. Membrane Sci., 167 (2), 107-122 (2000).
A.S. Kovvali, H. Chen and K.K. Sirkar, "Glycerol-based ILMs for Olefin-paraffin Separation", I&EC Res., 41 (3), 347-356 (2002).
M. Xanthos, C. Chandavasu, K.K. Sirkar and C.G. Gogos, "Melt Processed Microporous Films from Compatibilized Immiscible Blends with Potential as Membranes", Poly. Eng. & Sci., 42(4), 810-825 (2002).
S. Majumdar, A.K. Guha and K.K. Sirkar, "Fuel Oil Desalting by Hydrogel Hollow Fiber Membrane", J. Membrane Sci., 202 (1-2), 253-256 (2002).
A.S. Kovvali and K.K. Sirkar, "Carbon Dioxide Separation with Novel Solvents as Liquid Membranes", ", I&EC Res., 41(9), 2287-2295 (2002).
Y.J. Qin, J.P. Sheth and K.K. Sirkar, "Supported Liquid Membrane-based Pervaporation for VOC Removal from Water", I&EC Res., 41 (14) 3413-3428 (2002).
C. Chandavasu, M. Xanthos, K.K. Sirkar and C.G. Gogos, "Fabrication of Microporous Polymeric Membranes by Melt Processing of Immiscible Blends", J. Membrane Sci., 211(1), 167-175 (2003).
J. Sheth, Y.J. Qin, K.K. Sirkar and B.C. Baltzis, "Nanofiltration-based Diafiltration Process for Solvent Exchange in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing", J. Membrane Sci., 211(2), 251-261 (2003).
Y. J. Qin, J.P. Sheth and K.K. Sirkar, "Pervaporation Membranes highly Selective for Acetic Acid over Water", I&EC Res., 42(3), 582-595 (2003).
S. Majumdar, D. Bhaumik and K.K. Sirkar, "Performance of Commercial-size Plasmapolymerized PDMS-Coated Hollow Fiber Modules in Removing VOCs from N2/Air", J. Membrane Sci., 214(2), 323-330 (2003).
X.P. Dai, S. Majumdar, R.G. Luo and K.K. Sirkar, "Protein Loading, Elution and Resolution Behavior in a Novel Device that Integrates Ultrafiltration and Chromatographic Separation", Biotechnol. Bioeng., 83(2), 125-139 (2003).
G. Obuskovic, S. Majumdar and K.K. Sirkar, "Highly VOC-Selective Hollow Fiber Membranes for Separation by Vapor Permeation", J. Membrane Sci., 217(1-2), 99-116 (2003).
Y. Xu and K.K. Sirkar, "Protein Mass Transfer Enhancement in Membrane Filtration-cum-Adsorption Process", J. Membrane Sci., 221(1-2), 79-87 (2003).
D. Bhaumik, S. Majumdar and K.K. Sirkar, "Hollow Fiber Membrane Degassing in Ultrapure Water and Microbiocontamination", J. Membrane Sci., 235, 31-41 (2003).
M. Feins and K.K. Sirkar, "Highly Selective Membranes in Protein Ultrafiltration", Biotechnol. Bioeng., 86(6), 603-611 (2004) (Accelerated Publication).
Q. Fan, K.K. Sirkar, Y. Wang and B. Michniak, "In Vitro Delivery of Doxycycline Hydrochloride Based on a Porous Membrane-based Aqueous-organic Partitioning System," J. Controlled Release, 98 (3), 355-365 (2004).
B. Li and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Membrane and Device for Direct Contact Membrane Distillation-based Desalination Process", I & EC Res., 43(17), 5300-5309 (2004).
D. Zarkadas and K.K. Sirkar, "Solid Hollow Fiber Cooling Crystallization", I&EC Res., 43, 7163-7180 (2004).
D. Zarkadas and K.K. Sirkar, "Polymeric Hollow Fiber Heat Exchangers (PHFHEs): An Alternative for Lower Temperature Applications", I & EC Res., 43, 8093-8106 (2004).
A.P. Korikov and K.K. Sirkar, "Membrane Gas Permeance in Gas-Liquid Membrane Contactor Systems for Solutions Containing a Highly Reactive Absorbent", J. Membrane Sci., 246(1), 27-37 (2005).
M. Feins and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Internally Staged Ultrafiltration for Protein Purification", J. Membrane Sci., 248 (1-2), 137-148 (2005).
P. Kosaraju, A. Korikov, A. Kovvali and K.K. Sirkar, "Hollow Fiber Membrane Contactor-based CO2 Absorption-Stripping Using Novel Solvents and Membranes", I & EC Res., 44(5), 1250-1258 (2005).
Y. Xu, X.P. Dai, R.G. Luo and K.K. Sirkar, "A New Integrated Membrane Filtration-cum-Chromatographic Device", Biotech. Prog., 21 (2), 590-597 (2005).
B. Li and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Membrane and Device for Vacuum Membrane Distillation-based Desalination Process", J. Membrane Sci., 257 (1-2), 60-75 (2005).
D. Zarkadas and K.K. Sirkar, “Incremental Heat Transfer Number for Laminar Flow in Circular Tubes with the Boundary Condition of the Third Kind and Simple Design Formula for Shell-and-tube Laminar Flow Heat Exchangers with Constant External Resistance”, Int. J. of Transport Phenomena, 7, 297-306(2005).
A. P. Korikov, P.B. Kosaraju and K.K. Sirkar, “Interfacially Polymerized Hydrophilic Microporous Thin Film Composite Membranes on Porous Polyproyplene Hollow Fibers and Flat Films,” J. Membrane Science, 279, 1-2, 588-600 (2006).
D. M. Zarkadas and K.K. Sirkar,"Antisolvent Crystallization in Porous Hollow Fiber Devices", Chemical Engineering Science, 61(15), 5030-5048 (2006).
P. Kosaraju and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Solvent-resistant Hydrophilic Hollow Fiber Membranes for Efficient Membrance Solvent Back Extraction", J. Membrane Sci., 288 (1-2), 41-50, (2007).
L. Song, B. Li, K.K. Sirkar and J Gilron, " Direct Contact Membrane Distillation-based Desalination: Novel Membranes, Devices, Larger-scale Studies and a Model", I & EC Res., 46, 2307-2323 (2007).
J. Gilron, L. Song and K.K. Sirkar, "Design for Cascade of Crossflow Direct Contact Membrane Distillation", I & EC Res., 46, 2324-2334 (2007).
D. M. Zarkadas and K. K. Sirkar, "Cooling Crystallization of Paracetamol in Hollow Fiber Devices", I & EC Res., 46, 2928-2935 (2007).
A. Thongsukmak, and K.K. Sirkar, "Pervaporation Membranes Highly Selective for Solvents Present in Fermentation Broths", J. Membrane Sci., 302, 45-58 (2007).
F. He, J. Gilron, H. Lee, L. Song, and K.K. Sirkar, "Potential for Scaling by Sparingly Soluble Salts in Crossflow DCMD", J. Membrane Sci., 311 (1-2), 68-80 (2008).
P.B. Kosaraju and K.K. Sirkar, "Interfacially Polymerized Thin Film Composite Membranes on Microporous Polypropylene Supports for Solvent Resistant Nanofiltration," J. Membrane Sci., 321, 155-161 (2008).
K. K. Sirkar, "Membranes, Phase Interfaces and Separations: Novel Techniques and Membranes-An Overview", I&E Chem. Res., 47, 5250-5266 (2008). (100th Anniversary Review).
Q. Fan, K. K. Sirkar and B. Michniak, "Iontophoretic Transdermal Drug Delivery System Using a Conducting Polymeric Membrane", J. Membrane Sci., 321, 240-249 (2008).
L. Song, Z. Ma, X. Liao, P.B. Kosaraju, J.R. Irish and K. K. Sirkar, "Pilot Plant Studies of Novel Membranes and Devices for Direct Contact Membrane Distillation-based Desalination", J. Membrane Sci., 323, 257-270 (2008).
A. Thongsukmak and K.K. Sirkar, "Extractive Pervaporation to Separate Ethanol from its Dilute Aqueous Solutions Characteristics of Ethanol-Producing Fermentation Processes", J. Membrane Sci., 329, 119-129 (2009).
F. He, K.K. Sirkar and J. Gilron, "Studies on Scaling of Membranes in Desalination by Direct Contact Membrane Distillation -2: CaCO3 and Mixed CaCO3/CaSO4 Systems", Chem. Eng. Sci., 64, 1844-1859 (2009).
K.-Y. Lin, M. Xanthos and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Polypropylene based Microporous Membranes via Spherulitic Deformation", J. Membrane Sci., 330, 267-278 (2009).
Q. Fan, K.K. Sirkar and X. Wu, " A Thermo-sensitive Release System Based on Polymeric Membrane for Transdermal Delivery of Doxycycline HCI", J. Membrane Sci., 337, 175-181 (2009).
K.-Y. Lin, M. Xanthos and K.K. Sirkar, "Novel Polypropylene Microporous Membranes via Spherulitics Deformation: Processing Perspectives", Polymer, 50, 4671-4682 (2009).
F. He, K.K. Sirkar and J. Gilron, "Effect of Antiscalants to Mitigate Membrane Scaling by Direct Contact Membrane Distillation", J. Membrane Sci., 345, 53-58 (2009).
L. Song, B. Li, D. Zarkadas, S. Christian and K.K. Sirkar, "Polymeric Hollow Fiber Heat Exchangers for Thermal Desalination Processes", I& EC Res., 49, 11961-11977 (2010).
S. Roy, S. Addo Ntim, S. Mitra and K.K. Sirkar, "Facile Fabrication of Superior Nanofiltration Membranes from Interfacially Polymerized CNT-Polymer Composities", J. Membrane Sci., 375, 81-87 (2011).
H. Lee, F. He, L. Song, J. Gilron and K.K. Sirkar, "Desalination with a Cascade of Crossflow Hollow Fiber Membrane Distillation Devices Integrated with Hollow Fiber Heat Exchanger", AIChE J., 57(7), 1780-1795 (2011).
L. Yang, A. Thongsukmak, K.K. Sirkar, K.B. Gross and G. Mordukhovich, “Bio-inspired Onboard Membrane Separation of Water from Engine Oil”, J. Membrane Sci., 378, 138-148 (2011).
S. Roy, A. Thongsukmak, J. Tang and K.K. Sirkar, “Concentration of Hydrogen Peroxide Solution by Pervaporation”, J. Membrane Science, 389, 17-24 (2012).
D. Singh and K.K. Sirkar, “Desalination of brine and produced water by direct contact membrane distillation at high temperatures and pressures”, J. of Membrane Sci., 389, 380-399 (2012).
G. Obuskovic and K.K. Sirkar, “Liquid Membrane-based CO2 Reduction in a Breathing Apparatus”, J. Membrane Sci., 389, 424-434 (2012).
D. Singh and K. K. Sirkar, “Desalination by Airgap Membrane Distillation using a two Hollow-fiber-set Membrane Module”, J. Membrane Sci., 421-422, 172-179 (2012).
J. Tang and K. K. Sirkar, “Perfluoropolymer Membrane Behaves like a Zeolite Membrane in Dehydration of Aprotic Solvents”, J. Membrane Sci., 421-422, 211-216 (2012).
F. He, J. Gilron and K. K. Sirkar, “High Water Recovery in Direct Contact Membrane Distillation using a Series of Cascades”, Desalination, 233, 48-54 (2013).
X. Jie, J. Chau, G. Obuskovic and K.K. Sirkar, “Preliminary Studies of CO2 Removal from Precombustion Syngas through Pressure Swing Membrane Absorption Process with Ionic Liquid as Absorbent”, I&EC Res., 52, 8783-8799 (2013).
J. Chau, G. Obuskovic, X. Jie, T. Mulukutla and K.K. Sirkar, “Solubilities of CO2 and Helium in an Ionic Liquid Containing Poly(amidoamine) Dendrimer Gen 0”, I&EC Res., 52, 10484-10494 (2013).
J. Tang and K.K. Sirkar, “Permeation and Sorption of Organic Solvents and Separation of their Mixtures through Amorphous Perfluoropolymer Membrane in Pervaporation”, J. Membrane Sci., 447, 345-354 (2013).
D. Singh, P. Prakash and K.K. Sirkar, “De-oiled Produced Water Treatment using Direct Contact Membrane Distillation”, I&E Chem. Res., 52, 13439-13448 (2013) .
J. Chau, G. Obuskovic, X. Jie and K.K. Sirkar, “Pressure Swing Membrane Absorption Process for Shifted Syngas Separation in a 3-valve System: Modeling vs. Experiments”, J. Membrane Sci., 453, 61-70 (2014).
X. Jie, J. Chau, G. Obuskovic, and K. K. Sirkar, “Enhanced Pressure Swing Membrane Absorption Process for CO2 Removal from Precombustion Syngas with Dendrimer-Ionic Liquid Mixture as Absorbent”, I&E Chem. Res., 53(8), 3305-3320 (2014).
D. Chen, D. Singh, K.K. Sirkar and R. Pfeffer, “Continuous Polymer Coating Encapsulation of Submicrometer Particles Using a Solid Hollow Fiber Cooling Crystallization Method”, I&E Chem. Res., 53, 6388-6400 (2014).
D. Singh and K.K. Sirkar, “High Temperature Direct Contact Membrane Distillation based Desalination using PTFE Hollow Fibers”, Chem. Eng. Sci., 116, 824-833 (2014).
D. Chen, D. Singh, K.K. Sirkar. Z. Zhu and R. Pfeffer, “Continuous Polymer Nanocoating on Silica Nanoparticles”, Langmuir, 30, 7804-7810 (2014).
T. Mulukutla, G. Obuskovic, and K.K. Sirkar, “Novel Scrubbing System for Post-combustion CO2 Capture and Recovery: Experimental Studies”, J. Membrane Science, Accepted (2014).
Kamalesh K. Sirkar, "Separation of Molecules, Macromolecules and Particles: Principles, Phenomena and Processes", Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK (2014).
Co-editor with W.S. Winston Ho, "Membrane Handbook", Chapman and Hall, New York (1992); Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston (2001).
Editor, "New Membrane Materials and Processes for Separation," Co-editor D.L. Lloyd, AIChE Symposium Series, No. 261, Vol. 84 (1988).
Professor Kamalesh K. Sirkar delivered a Plenary Lecture on "Novel Membrane-based Processes, Novel Membranes and Engineered Membrane Surfaces" at the 4th National Congress of the Mexican Society of Science and Technology of Membranes during June 25-27, 2014 at Merida, Yucatan, Mexico.
Professor Kamalesh K. Sirkar delivered a Keynote Lecture on "Novel Membrane Absorption-based Processes for CO2 Capture" at the International Congress of Membranes and Membrane Processes (ICOM 2014) which was held at Suzhou, China during July 20-25, 2014.