Dibakar Bhattacharyya has been a fixture at the University of Kentucky’s School of Engineering for over five decades and is renowned for his analysis, which focuses on incorporating life sciences supplies with synthetic membranes for filtering and producing clear water.
Recently, the director of UK’s Center of Membrane Sciences, identified to colleagues as “DB,” is contributing his decades of membrane expertise to help contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. He has the theory and the means to develop a medical face mask that will capture and deactivate the COVID-19 virus on contact.
DB’s concept is to create a membrane masks with a more porous and spongy construction that will embrace charged domain and enzymes, which might seize and effectively deactivate the virus.
The new membrane will construct upon the center’s National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and National Science Foundation-funded activities, which have developed various functionalized membranes for environmental remediation. In contrast to passive membranes, functionalized membranes present further advantages by interacting with undesired particles like viruses by selective binding or deactivation.
To build and test the membrane, DB plans to collaborate with researchers throughout campus along with Thomas Dziubla, Isabel Escobar and Zach Hilt from the College of Engineering, Allan Butterfield within the College of Arts and Sciences, and Thomas Chambers with the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.