Student Fellows

Headshot of Akash Ball in front of a yellow background

Akash Ball

  • PhD candidate
  • 2024-25 J-WAFS Fellow for Water and Food Solutions
  • Department of Chemical Engineering

Akash is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Chemical Engineering at MIT. His research focuses on the computational discovery of novel functional materials as energy-efficient ion separation membranes for applications like water desalination, battery recycling, and heavy metal removal. Through his research, he plans to address the present challenges like slow water permeation, permeability-selectivity tradeoff, and high fabrication costs with currently available commercial membranes. By the end of his PhD, Akash hopes to discover existing candidate materials, propose new possible materials, and find experimental design rules that enable the synthesis of next-generation membranes. 

Before coming to MIT, Akash obtained a master's degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay and a bachelor's in chemical engineering from Jadavpur University in India. Additionally, he spent the summer of 2019 as an R&D intern at Haldor Topsoe New Delhi, designing equipment specifications to produce renewable ultra-low-sulfur diesel. Apart from working at Haldor Topsoe, he worked as a research intern in several prestigious institutions in India throughout his undergraduate days. In his spare time, Akash loves to paint, play badminton, and explore nature. 

Photo Credit: Devosmita Sen