Polymer Membrane Research at UVA

geise research group

The Geise research group seeks to develop structure/property/processing relationships to guide polymeric materials design for membrane-based liquid separation and energy applications by understanding the influence of nano- and molecular-scale interactions and phenomena on mass transfer and system-level performance.

We are located in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Virginia.

Contact the Geise Group

geise lab

Geise Group Research:
Water-Energy Nexus

Our research focuses on experimental studies aimed at solving fundamental and practical problems related to water and ion transport through polymers that could be used as membranes in a variety of water and energy applications. Providing sustainable and economic supplies of purified water and clean energy solutions is a critical global challenge for the future, and polymer membranes will play a key role in these efforts.

We seek to rationally tailor and design polymers at the molecular level and process those polymers to engineer advanced membrane materials that will expand access to clean water and enhance the use of renewable energy sources.

Meet the Geise Group

drought conditions scene

Water Purification for a Thirsty World

Within the next 10 years, the United Nations predicts that nearly two-thirds of the world’s population may find themselves living in a water stressed area.

Today, the vast majority of desalination processes are performed using polymer-based membranes. Improved membranes are needed to meet the challenges of economically and sustainably purifying increasingly saline and contaminated water sources around the globe.

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night lights scene

Clean and Renewable Energy
to Light our Future

Energy demand around the globe is projected to increase by more than 50% over the next 35 years, and sustainable, low-carbon footprint energy resources are needed to meet this increasing energy demand.

Technologies such as large-scale flow batteries, reverse electrodialysis, and capacitive mixing rely on polymer membranes to regulate ion transport. Improved membrane selectivity will enable advances in renewable energy storage and generation technologies.

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Join the Geise Research Group

Prospective graduate students interested in joining the group should indicate their interest when applying for admission to the Department of Chemical Engineering at UVA

Undergraduate students interested in research opportunities should express interest by completing the undergraduate research interest questionnaire (login using your UVA e-mail address to complete the form).

Latest News from the Geise Group


May 2019

Kevin Chang Admitted to Doctoral Candidacy

Congratulations to graduate student Kevin Chang for successfully completing his Ph.D. Dissertation Proposal titled Influence of Polymer and Water Dynamics on Water and Ion Transport in Hydrated Polymers for Membrane Desalination Applications !


April 2019

Graduate Students Yuanyuan Ji, Patrick McCormack, and Kevin Chang Present Research at CHEERS 2019

Graduate students Yuan Ji (pictured along with Prof. Geise), Patrick McCormack, and Kevin Chang presented posters at the inaugural Chemical Engineering Research Symposium (CHEERS). Kevin Chang was also a member of the organizing committee for the event. Read more about CHEERS.


April 2019

Yuanyuan Ji is the 2019 UVA Three Minute Thesis winner

Graduate student Yuan Ji's three minute thesis presentation was selected as the audience/people's choice winner at UVA's 7th Annual Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition. Yuan spoke for three minutes (with a single slide) about her research on Using Selective Membranes to Provide Clean Water for Everyone. She was one of ten UVA finalists UVA (and one of four UVA Engineering finalists) following a preliminary round of the competition. Congratulations Yuan!

April 2019

Prof. Geise Wins Teaching Awards

Professor Geise was recently awarded the 2019 Hartfield Excellence in Teaching Award and the University of Virginia Student Council Teaching Award for 2019!

The 2019 Hartfield Excellence in Teaching Award, presented by the Jefferson Scholars Foundation at UVA, recognizes faculty in the School of Engineering and Applied Science who exemplify the highest standards and practices of teaching and demonstrate that communicating knowledge and inspiring students are as important to the education process as scholarship.

The Student Council Teaching Award, presented by the Academic Affairs committee of the UVA Student Council, recognizes professors across the University of Virginia who are committed to education and teaching excellence.

Prof. Geise is grateful to current and former students and colleagues for their support.

March 2019

Prof. Geise Wins All-University Teaching Award

Professor Geise was awarded the All-University Teaching Award for 2019 at the University of Virginia! This award, presented by the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, recognizes excellence in teaching among UVA faculty of any rank. Prof. Geise is grateful to current and former students and colleagues for their support.

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