University of Johannesburg: Prof Kriveshini Pillay on using nanotechnology as a tool for water treatment and combatting crime

Nanotechnology is an emerging field of cutting edge technology with the discovery of this field dating back to the 1800s. A multitude of nanomaterials have been synthesized and reported over the years. These are not limited to carbon nanomaterials but encompass a broad range of elements and compounds including TiO2 and various metallic nanoparticles.

According to Kriveshini Pillay, a Professor within the Department of Chemical Sciences at the University of Johannesburg (UJ), such materials have been noted for their interesting properties which enable them to be utilized in medical, electronic, water treatment and forensic applications.

“The ultimate goal of the research is to go beyond the laboratory experimental work, to introduce nanotechnologies in water treatment, forensic science and law enforcement to promote water security and crime-free environments, which is why this technology has gained tremendous significance,” said Professor Kriveshini Pillay when she delivered her professorial inauguration address titled “Nanotechnology as a tool towards solving South African problems.”

Prof Pillay’s inaugural took place in the University’s Ubuntu Chambers, Madibeng Building, Auckland Park Kingsway Campus on Thursday, 02 September 2021.

Prof Kriveshini Pillay argued that to solve two key South African problems namely poor water quality and crime, future perspectives on using nanotechnology to commercialise these research initiatives in the 4IR regime needs to be applied. “This will remove toxic water pollutants on site to ensure improved water quality for rural communities and automated tracking of water pollutants and the development of new nanocomposites and nanomaterials to address crimes will be geared towards improving blood detection and latent fingerprint detection.”

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