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Civil and Environmental Engineering faculty Kalpana Katti presents Plenary Lecture at Biot-5 Poromechanics Conference

Dr. Kalpana Katti, University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering presented an invited plenary lecture at the Biot-5 conference in Vienna Austria in July 2013 on “FTIR investigation of molecular interactions in swelling clays and their role on swelling and other macroscopic properties”. The co-author on this presentation was Dr. Dinesh R. Katti, Professor and Interim Chair, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. In this talk Dr. Kalpana Katti demonstrated novel use of infrared spectroscopy in measurement of flow through nanosized and sub-nanosized porosities in clays, a method developed by the Katti group at NDSU. Measurement of flow through porous media is important for energy exploration, to understand nutrient transport in biological tissues, for biomedical applications (such as drug delivery), to evaluate movement of fluid through soils near and at landfills and also various environmental applications. The technique developed by the Katti group enables measurement of flowrates through nanoscale-mesoscale porosities using a combination of advanced infrared spectroscopic techniques with atomic force microscopy phase imaging. The experiments were conducted in the Advanced Materials Laboratory in the Civil and Environemental Engineering department. The Biot Conferences are named after Maurice Anthony Biot (1905-1985) the founder of the field that is commonly referred to as Biot theory of poroelasticity, a field with unparalleled impact on a wide variety of disciplines, including civil and biomedical engineering, biology, geophysics, acoustics, and materials science. The first Biot conference on Poromechanics was held in 1998 at the Université catholique de Louvain (Belgium), the Alma Mater of Maurice Biot. The 2013 Biot-5 Conference commemorated the “Grandfather" of Poromechanics, Karl von Terzaghi (1883-1963), at the Technical University in Vienna, the location of Terzaghi’s first full professorship appointment before moving to MIT in the USA.