- Process modeling and optimization of simulated moving bed and large-scale chromatography
- Modeling and design of reactive separation processes
- Separations for chiral and biological products for pharmaceuticals
- Design of hydrogen production processes from solar energy
- Adsorption processes for pharmaceutical products, nuclear wastes, and CO2 capture
- Modeling, design, and optimization of biofuel processes
Dr. Kawajiri’s research interests are process modeling, design, and optimization for novel separation and energy processes. Some specific topics include optimal design and operation of simulated moving bed (SMB) chromatography, adsorptive carbon capture, reactive separation, hydrogen production, enantiomer separation, and crystallization processes.
Simulated moving bed (SMB) chromatography
SMB chromatography has a long history of use in the sugar and petrochemical industries. It is now recognized as one of the most important separation techniques also in the pharmaceutical industry for large and small molecules. Dr. Kawajiri’s work addresses efficient process development, operation, and control of SMB processes utilizing nonlinear optimization techniques as well as experimental studies.
Pressure and temperature swing adsorption processes
Gas and vapor adsorption is recognized as a key technology in many energy and environmental problems. Dr. Kawajiri's research addresses modeling and optimization of adsorption processes for applications in CO2 capture and gas purification.
Modeling of crystallization processes
Although crystallization is recognized as one of the most powerful and cost-effective separation methods, design, and operation remain challenges. Dr. Kawajiri’s approach to this problem is to apply computational techniques such as mathematical modeling, parameter estimation, and nonlinear programming utilizing in-situ particle characterization techniques.