CIRE2N seeks to educate in nanotechnology and nanosciences by leveraging existing research facilities and local resources.  Currently research efforts are based in a polluted marsh located at Las Cucharillas, a coastal wetland reserve in Cataño, Puerto Rico managed by Corredor del Yaguazo Inc.; a community-based NGO (non-governmental organization) that has a cooperative agreement with UPR-Río Piedras and Puma Energy.  This will facilitate the development of nanotechnology and knowledge transfer through training student and faculty in S&T entrepreneurship and commercialization to support financial sustainability, public education, and outreach.

Subprojects Details


Ammonia Alkaline Fuel Cell

The main objectives of this subproject are geared toward addressing challenges in: (1) Synthesis of nanocatalyst coated membrane (CCM) that enables better catalyst utilization under real fuel cell conditions. (2) Developing more stable facet selective Pt-based nanocatalysts and other novel nanocatalysts with high performance. (3) Assembling more durable alkaline membranes [...]


Nano zero valent iron, core-shell-Fe0/FexOy nanoparticles for remediation of heavy metals in wetland soil, and its reusability for energy applications.

The main goal of this subproject is to understand the behavior of the interaction of plants and nZVI for in situ applications in contaminated wetlands soils, a process known as phytonanoremediation.   The subproject will consist of three parts: 1) eco- hydrologic assessment of the wetland 2) bioprospecting of heavy [...]


A synergistic combination of algal wastewater treatment, hydrothermal biofuel production and fabrication of algal base nanomaterials.

A synergistic combination of algal wastewater treatment, hydrothermal biofuel production, and fabrication of algal base nanomaterials. The physical and chemical methods used for the generation of nanomaterials have various drawbacks such as high cost of production, requiring, high energy input and generation of toxic byproducts. To overcome these limitations, several [...]


Development of pH switchable polymer nanofibers for the recovery of polyphenolic compounds.

The occurrence of polyphenolic compounds such as tannic acid, gallic acid, catechol, and others is common in wetlands like Las Cucharillas.  These polyphenols can be applied in the creation of a wide range of materials such as plastics, resisns, and adhesives. The main goal of this sub-project is to recover [...]


Novel Metal Oxide Semiconductor (MOS) Heterostructures for highly sensitive gas sensors.

MOS are widely used gas sensing materials due to their low cost, wide range of detectable gases, and chemical stability at the operation conditions. IRG2 will tailor the synthesis of new nano composite MOS materials including (but not limited to): SnO2, ZnO, TiO2, WO3, and CuO. These materials will be [...]

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