All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Vinoy Thomas

Advisory Committee Members

Claudia Lungu

Charles Monroe

Mark Weaver

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Engineering


Environmental pollution has exponentially increased since the industrial revolution due to many advancements in technology which has led to the use of innovative materials. In the manufacturing and fabrication processes of modern technology, society has become victim to the contamination via production byproducts. This issue needs to be addressed with greater efforts to solve this worldwide issue to ultimately minimize these potential detrimental public health effects and improve environmental preservation. This research study focuses on contributing to efforts with minimizing wastewater pollution by the fabrication and characterization of complex porosity gradient fibrous membrane that purifies via particle size exclusion, photocatalysis and also physical adsorption. The membrane consists of a nano/mico-fibrous composite network fabricated by side-by-side electrospinning for the initial aim of this study. The experimental setup resulted in a novel morphological structure that yields exceptional catalytic responsiveness in visible light compared to conventional materials that are currently used. Subsequently, there is a thermal bonded discontinuous polymeric microfibrous mat with activated carbon granule incorporation to serve as a superior mechanical stability agent with high physical adsorption capability. The second aim was to investigate fiber length dependence on mechano-morphological properties while achieving adequate activated carbon during processing when subjected to post-fabrication thermal bonding of resulting mat. Furthermore, the third aim was to fabricate the complex construct by combining methods from the first and second aim to assemble a system that filters through two water purification mechanisms (photocatalysis and physical adsorption) simultaneously. This study was investigated for characterization and verification for various aspects such as morphological analyses, crystallographic assessments, mechanical testing, while defining construct functionality by examining adsorption and photodegradation performance.

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