Luzdary Ruelas

MIT ChemE Undergraduate Research and Innovation Scholar
Advisor: Allan Myerson
Department: Chemical Engineering
Years: 2016-2017

Alternative Antisolvent Crystallization of Diphenhydramine with Functionalized Iron Oxide Nanoparticle

The global shift towards sustainable technology has motivated research for waste minimization in chemical processes such as crystallization. Crystallization is used to form a pure crystal from a saturated solution. Currently antisolvent crystallization is the most widely used technique but it fails to meet green chemistry specifications by adding more solvent to the original solution ultimately increasing waste. Using functionalized iron oxide nanoparticles as an alternative to antisolvent crystallization addresses waste problems since the particles have magnetic and tunable properties making separation easier and allowing their reuse. My SuperUROP project will focus on developing a crystallization and purification method for a diphenhydramine system using functionalized nanoparticles.

SuperUROP allows me to drive the work and lets me devote myself to research. My project is to change the solubility of diphenhydramine in solvents by adding functionalized iron oxide nanoparticles. My background provides insight for beginning but crystallization is new to me so I hope to learn more about the field. This project excites me because it addresses issues from environmental factors to the manufacture of drugs.