Lafayette ChBE has modern facilities and equipment, from which cutting-edge research can be performed.
The Center for Molecular Bioengineering (Acopian 232) is a recently renovated laboratory space in Acopian Engineering Center, adjacent to the Chemical Engineering Unit Operations Laboratory. The Center is partitioned into several “suites”, each enabling a core research area of expertise in molecular bioengineering: real time RT-PCR, biaxial materials testing with digital image correlation, biomaterials fabrication, protein crystallization and separation, and state-of-the-art microscospy, including an inverted fluorescence phase contrast microscope and an inverted confocal microscope with a 60” flat panel monitor to increase teaching capabilities. Other capital equipment include a Nanodrop spectrophotometer, protein electrophoresis equipment, chromatography apparatus, microcentrifuge, refrigerated centrifuge, chemical hood, refrigerator, and -20oC freezer. The Center is dedicated to undergraduate teaching laboratories and to student/faculty research in bioengineering.
The Environmental and Energy Engineering Laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art instrumentations to conduct its ongoing research in the biodiesel production and green engineering. The facilities include a gas-chromatograph/mass spectrometer, supercritical fluid extractor, and supercritical fluid reactor as well as being outfitted ancillary equipment such as an analytical balance, block heaters, freezer, and a laminar flow hood.
The Mammalian Tissue Culture Laboratory (Acopian 235) is located directly across the hall from the Center for Molecular Bioengineering. It is equipped with a biological safety cabinet, CO2 incubators, and necessary supporting apparatuses to grown and maintain mammalian cells in culture, such as a water bath, refrigerator, -20oC freezer, and a -80oC freezer, and an inverted phase contrast microscope with image acquisition and analysis capabilities. The cell culture suite is dedicated to student/faculty research projects and in teaching laboratories (in ChE 372: Biomolecular Engineering) to introduce students to sterile cell culture techniques.
This facility is planned as a center for fabricating micro- and nano-scale devices that explore various transport and kinetic phenomena. Research to be conducted in this facility will largely be in the area of microfluidics and semiconductor processing. Targeted courses that will use this facility include experimental design, integrated chemical engineering, and process design.
This laboratory will be equipped with all of the components necessary to pattern planar substrates, performing both traditional photo- and soft-lithography. Photomasks will be an outsourced item, with specific room lighting requirements created using light filtration in designated areas. Equipment will include the following: spin-coater, hotplate, UV exposer, developer, plasma reactor, vacuum oven, and casting systems. Substrate analysis will be performed using ellipsometry, profilometry, and a microscope equipped with digital imaging. Fluid flow introduced to a particular device will be controlled using one or more syringe pumps.