The 1002nd Meeting of the Northeastern Section of the American Chemical Society
Thursday – March 11th, 2021
Title: At home chemical experimentation for Chemical Engineering students in the time of the Sars-CoV-2: a collage of electrochemistry, statistics, UV-Spectrophotometry, caffeine, particles, glucose, kinetics, and mass transfer.
By: Aaron Moment – Professor of Practice in Chemical Engineering at Columbia University
Abstract: In March of 2020 many universities adopted a remote learning format in response to the world wide Sars-Cov-2 outbreak, that has continued until the present time. Although laboratory courses have adapted in various ways, we found that students respond well to hands-on experiments conducted at home using kits and manuals that were developed specifically for this purpose. Many students expressed excitement and a high level of engagement upon receipt of a customized lab kit provided for them. With the advent of the smart phone and also inexpensive and reliable distribution of traditional supplies (e.g. scales, pipettes) through on-line marketplaces, this approach can be accessible, cost-effective, and fun. Students continue to work in lab-groups in this way, turn in traditional lab reports, and are supervised during traditionally timed laboratory sessions within their lab groups. We will illustrate several examples in this talk, currently running through Columbia Chemical Engineering, that tie together statistics, UV-VIS Spectrophotometry, coffee making, glucose quantitation, mass transfer correlations, and tablet disintegration. We plan to discuss details of these, as well as future improvements and directions for the at-home experimental approaches.
Aaron Moment is currently a Professor of Practice in Chemical Engineering at Columbia University, where he teaches core curriculum, electives related to pharmaceutical production technology, and maintains research interests in manufacturing and analytical technology for the fine chemical and pharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining Columbia, he worked for many years in industry at both Merck & Co., and DuPont Pharmaceuticals on chemical process development and commercialization projects. Within industry, Aaron led teams in process modeling, process analytical technology, and process development, and participated in several commercial projects. He earned a PhD in Chemical Engineering from MIT, in year 2000 under the direction of Paula Hammond, and a MS in Chemical Engineering from RPI in year 1994.