Overview of Research in the Department of Applied Chemistry
Research in the Department began in 2004 through initiatives by Prof Bhekie Mamba (Appointed HOD in 2011), Prof Rui Krause and Dr Manelisi Shumane. The primary focus was to study and quantify the amount of pollutants in South African waters and to develop cyclodextrin based nanoporous polymers for drinking water purification. Since then over 40 post graduate students have graduated with MSc and PhD degrees in the Department. Today over 50 Masters, PhD, and Post-Doctoral candidates are enrolled in any given year.
Over 80 % of the staff members are actively involved in world class research with collaborators from other parts of the world including India, USA, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Brazil, Argentina, Israel etc. The Department has an average collective publication record of over 20 papers per year since 2008. It is a host to the Mintek/NIC Nanotechnology Innovation Centre, The Nanomaterials Science Research Centre, The DST/NRF SARChi in Nanotechnology and Water, and ESKOM Nanotechnology for Water Research.
The Department has distinguished itself as leaders in nanotechnology and water research in the country. It has memoranda of understanding with industry partners such as Johannesburg Water, the Water Research Commission and ESKOM. Most of its research funding comes from a number of sources including ESKOM, DST/Mintek NIC, the Water Research Commission, the National Research Foundation (NRF), the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Strong Materials, IBSA, the University Research Funding, Johannesburg Water and Bilateral agreements with external institutions.
Research in the Department is conducted mainly under the Centre for Nanomaterials Science Research (CNSR) and the Nanotechnology Innovation Centre (NIC). Other research in the department includes analytical/environmental chemistry, electrochemistry research, natural products chemistry, polymer science research and computational chemistry.
Professor Patrick G. Ndungu
Deputy HOD: Research
Tel.: +27(0)11 559 6180
Fax: +27(0)11 559 6154