The Combustion and Catalysis Lab is directed by Professor Marco J. Castaldi. The main focus is the thermal and catalytic conversion of carbon based material to desired products. For example, municipal solid waste and biomass to synthetic fuels, liquid fuels to hydrogen and greenhouse gases (carbon-based) to fuels.
Professor Castaldi was recently quoted in a recent Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN) feature. The article by Alexander Tullo presents the issues associated with plastic waste. The article “Plastic has a problem; is chemical recycling the solution?” published October 6, 2019 C&EN VOL. 97, ISSUE 39 details how new and existing conversion technologies are planning to process the plastic wastes that are not or cannot be recycled. Currently about 9% of plastics are recycled because the public does not separate their waste enough, the markets for recycled material are weak and product performance dictates exacting properties which recycled material normally cannot meet. To read more please visit https://cen.acs.org/environment/recycling/Plastic-problem-chemical-recycling-solution/97/i39.
Maryland Could See Waste Crisis
After stricter limits on waste-to-energy facilities in Maryland, the state could see a drastic uptick in the amount of waste that needs to be landfilled. If Maryland’s two WTE facilities close, it will add millions of tons of household waste back into the landfill stream. State projections, meanwhile, show that the state’s landfills will be full within 30 years at the current rate – if the WTE facilities close early, that rate would grow exponentially. State officials are hoping that improved recycling can offset the waste flow or municipalities would have to pay to send the waste out of state. At present, Montgomery County pays nearly $1 million annually to send waste to Pennsylvania or Virginia.
Prof. Castaldi’s Testimony to the Maryland House and Senate
Please tune in today, Wednesday, July 31, 2019 at 3pm to WHCR-90.3FM to From City to the World, hosted by CCNY President Vince Boudreau.
President Boudreau will discuss sustainability and waste management with Professor Marco Castaldi, the Director of the Earth Engineering Center here at CCNY and a Professor in our Chemical Engineering Department.
On the second half of the show Cheryl Huber, the Assistant Director of Greenmarket, the country’s largest network of outdoor farmers markets will join the conversation. She will discuss her organization’s work with an emphasis on Grownyc’s Zero Waste program.
To listen to or watch From City to the World tune in to WHCR-90.3FM or go to www.whcr.org and click on the From City to the World banner at the top of the home page.
Prof. Castaldi received a Fellow grade in Ameican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). The ASME Committee of Past Presidents confers the Fellow grade of membership on worthy candidates to recognize their outstanding engineering achievements. Professor Castaldi is an ASME MEMBER for over 15 years in which he focused on basic and applied research to make current and new processes more environmentally benign. He has participated in many ASME initiatives and primarily interfaced with MER, EEWRC, and IGTI.
CCL student Romina Gamarra won the First Place in the Environmental Science category in the Westchester Science and Engineering Fair (WESEF) on March 16th, 2019. She has been working in CCL labs for the last three summers and advised by Dr. Marco Castaldi. Last year she had placed 4th in WESEF and 3rd in Genius Olympiads. After her win in WESEF, she was also selected to attend the New York State Science and Engineering Fair (NYSSEF) for the upcoming April. Congratulations and best wishes to Romina in her path to success!
Professor Marco J. Castaldi, Director of the Earth Engineering Center of CCNY, who has been associated with WTERT since its foundation in 2002, is the head of WTERT-U.S.A. The leadership transition occurred during the EEC/WTERT 2018 bi-Annual Conference held at CCNY on October 4th & 5th, 2018. Professor Castaldi will continue to research novel and traditional thermal conversion systems that convert MSW into energy and chemicals. For more information regarding some of the activities of WTERT-USA please see the CCNY-EEC website.
Professor Castaldi is interviewed for a financial news segment regarding the increasing problem of plastic wastes. In the segment, Prof. Castaldi answers some questions about the suitability of using Waste-to-Energy and other thermal processes (i.e. gasification and pyrolysis) as a part of the solution to the plastic waste problem. For more please see the following-
Plastics have gained significant attention recently due to a number of domestic and international activities. This brings awareness to an issue that we have long been investigating but theoretically and practically with organizations ranging from the US EPA and start-up companies. A new story has been published in Chemical & Engineering News from the American Chemical Society exploring the use of plastic waste for energy generation where Professor Castaldi has been interviewed and quoted. To read the entire story please the following link:
CCL alumni Alexsandra Guerra started a company called Nori in Seattle as a marketplace for reversing climate change. The company hosts summits, publishes weekly blogs, hosts webinars to engage experts into the design process, and hosts a weekly podcast on all things carbon removal. All of this can be found at https://nori.com.
Nori recently launched a crowd sale of tokens for early investors. The campaign can be seen here: republic.co/Nori
Visiting researcher Axel Fache will be working in CCL studying development of a catalytic methanation reactor for power-to-gas applications. Axel works in Laboratoire de thermique, énergétique et procédés (LaTEP), Pau, France. The aim of his project is to develop a catalytic reactor converting CO/CO2 (from waste and biomass valorization processes) and H2 (from renewable electricity origin) into synthetic methane. In CCL, Axel will be working for 2 months to perform experiments, and to compare some simulation results to experimental results of dynamic methanation.