Daryll James Munoz is currently an undergraduate student studying Chemical Engineering. He is an intern at the Rutgers Energy Institute for the summer of 2017, working with Professor Fuat Celik of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering.
1: Please briefly describe your research. My research aims to engineer and design titanium dioxide based catalysts that use sunlight to make hydrogen production more sustainable. A zero emission fuel, hydrogen has been a large focus in greener energy. We explore different methods to create defects in our catalyst and test their activity in chemical and hydrogen production through various reaction pathways. In addition, we investigate different sources for hydrogen production including landfill derived methane and biomass. My summer project focused on the formation and analysis of defects in our catalyst by placing it under various gaseous atmospheres under high pressure and high temperature conditions.
2: How did you come to be involved in this research? I began my involvement in research through the Aresty Summer Science program last summer and have continued to do research since then. Through programs like Aresty and REI, I was able to expand my understanding in catalysis and greener energy.
3: Where do you see your research fitting into our energy future? Hydrogen is a promising alternative fuel, but current methods of hydrogen production are unsustainable, requiring very high operational temperatures. By introducing catalysts to the reaction pathways, we can increase the overall sustainability of hydrogen production by decreasing operational temperature. Transitioning to greener energy sources will reduce the environmental stress that traditional fossil fuel consumption places on our planet.