Abdul Ghaffar

Postdoctoral Fellows

Postdoctoral Fellow


Al-Jazri West, Level 4, 4204-WS18

Research Interests

My primary research is focused on environmental functional materials, adsorption and membrane technology for water decontamination, treatment and desalination. I have experience in composites, membrane fabrication and surface design for application in environmental water treatment, separation and filtration. I have been working on 2D materials, biomass derived carbon, ultrathin membranes, stimuli responsive membranes, solar-water desalination and energy generation, and porous organic frameworks.

Selected Publications

Munir Ullah Ullah Khan, Safir Ullah Khan, Xiaohan Cao, Muhammad Usman, Xinchen Yue, Abdul Ghaffar, Muhammad Hassan, Chengjian Zhang, Xinghong Zhang, Copolymerization of carbonyl sulfide and propylene oxide via heterogeneous Prussian Blue Analogue catalyst with high productivity and selectivity, Chemistry An Asian Journal 2022, 18, e202201050
• Abdul Ghaffar, Qaiser Imran, Muhammad Hassan, Muhammad Usman, Munir Ullah Khan, Simultaneous solar water desalination and energy generation by high efficient graphene oxide-melanin photothermal membrane, Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering 2022, 10, 108424.
• Abdul Ghaffar, Cheng Chen, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Underwater superoleophobic PVA-GO nanofibrous membranes for emulsified oily water purification, Environmental Science Nano 2019, 6(12), 3723–3733.
• Lina Zhang, Abdul Ghaffar, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Stable graphene based membrane with pH responsive gates for advanced molecular separation, Environmental Science & Technology 2019, 53(17), 10398–10407.
• Abdul Ghaffar, Lina Zhang, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Scalable graphene oxide membranes with tunable water channels and stability for ion rejection, Environmental Science Nano 2019, 6(3), 904–915.
• Lina Zhang, Baoliang Chen, Abdul Ghaffar, Xiaoying Zhu, Nanocomposite membrane with polyethylenimine grafted graphene oxide as a novel additive to enhance pollutant filtration performance, Environmental Science & Technology 2018, 52(10), 5920–5930.
• Kaijie Yang, Jun Wang, Xiaoxiao Chen, Qiang Zhao, Abdul Ghaffar, Baoliang Chen, Application of graphene-based materials in water purification: from the nanoscale to specific devices, Environmental Science Nano 2018, 5(6), 1264–1297.
• Abdul Ghaffar, Lina Zhang, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Porous PVdF/GO nanofibrous membranes for selective separation and recycling of charged organic dyes from water, Environmental Science & Technology 2018, 52(7), 4265–4274.
• Abdul Ghaffar, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Biochar composite membrane for high performance pollutant management: Fabrication, structural characteristics, and synergistic mechanisms, Environmental Pollution 2018, 233, 1013–1023.
• Abdul Ghaffar, Xiaoying Zhu, Baoliang Chen, Structural characteristics of biochar-graphene nanosheet composites and their adsorption performance for phthalic acid esters, Chemical Engineering Journal 2017, 319, 9–20.


Ph.D Environmental Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China.

M.E. Environmental Engineering, Kunming University of Science & Technology, Kunming, China.

B.E. Textile Engineering, Hamdard University, Karachi, Pakistan.

Professional Profile

07/2023-Present: Postdoctoral Fellow, King Abdullah University of Science & Technology, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia.

11/2021-10/2023: Postdoctoral Fellow, Zhejiang University-University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Institute (ZJU–UIUC), Haining, China.

07/2019-06/2021: Postdoctoral Fellow, Shenyang National Laboratory for Materials Science, Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenyang, China.

03/2010-08/2011: Technical Engineer, Chakwal Mills, Lahore, Pakistan.

Scientific and Professional Membership

• American Chemical Society (ACS)
• Association of Environmental Engineering & Science Professors (AEESP)
• The North American Membrane Society (NAMS)
• Materials Research Society (MRS)
• International Water Association (IWA)
• European Geosciences Union (EGU)


• 2023: National Science Foundation of China RFIS, Research Fund.
• 2022: China Postdoctoral Science Foundation, Research Fund.
• 2019: International Postdoctoral Talent Exchange Postdoc, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China.
• 2021: Seal of Excellence, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, Postdoctoral Fellowships, European Union.
• 2018: Research exchange visiting fellowship, University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany.
• 2015: Academic PhD research fellowship, Zhejiang University, China.
• 2011: Academic M.E. research fellowship, China Scholarship Council.

Non-KAUST Affiliations

PSE - Physical and Engineering Division

Research Interests Keywords

2D materials Ultrathin Membranes Responsive membranes Composite membrane