College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Thivani Senathiraja’s passion for taking on problems is leading to grand successes

Senathiraja is working with Chris Cornelius, the Dr. Thomas D. McGee and Dr. Ick-Jhin Rick Yoon Department Chair in Materials Science and Engineering/Wilkinson Chair in Materials Science and Engineering and Professor of Chemical Engineering, by courtesy, to promote green energy by optimizing and increasing the performance and durability of hydrogen fuel cell membranes. Her research and leadership have resulted in her receiving several awards, including the local Guiding Start Award from the Graduate Society of Women Engineers.

Chowdhury computational research crosses new frontiers in protein structure study

Research led by Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering assistant professor Ratul Chowdhury has landed firmly on the cutting edge of new computational technology in protein research – and on the cover of a recent issue of Nature Biotechnology, one of the highest ranked journals in this field.

Mars Wrigley Confections donates more than $750k worth of lab equipment to ISU

The spirit of giving isn’t just limited to the Christmas holiday season! That’s what Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (CBE) Professor of Practice John Kaiser has experienced recently with the help of generous benefactors at his former employer, Mars Wrigley Confections. They’ve supplied more than $750,000 worth of lab equipment to the department.

George Burnet, one of CBE’s most influential figures, passes away

A pillar in the history of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering has passed away. George Burnet V, who progressed from student to faculty member to department chair over a span of more than 60 years, died January 13 at the age of 98.

CBE alumnus, Hall of Fame member G. Paul Wilhite passes away

Paul Wilhite, a 1959 B.S. graduate of Iowa State’s Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering and a member of the department’s Hall of Fame, has passed away.

Apply now for CBE’s 2023 BioMaP undergrad research program

The application period for the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering’s 2023 BioMaP REU program is now open. The program will be held from May 30 – August 4.

Efraín Rodríguez-Ocasio is growing a research career in the “corn place”

Growing up, Efraín Rodríguez-Ocasio did not foresee himself pursuing a Ph.D. in chemical engineering in a state he thought of as the “corn place.”  

But after discovering the opportunity to work with Laura Jarboe, Cargill Professor of Chemical Engineering, Rodríguez-Ocasio has found Iowa State fertile ground to grow a career in bioplastics research.

CBE’s AIChE student chapter proudly represents ISU at national conference in Phoenix

The Department of Chemical Engineering’s American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) student chapter recently returned from the organization’s Annual Student Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. Twenty ISU student members took part in the event.

Tessonnier-led research bridges gap for more efficient conversions of lignin for cleaner and greener chemicals

Effective conversion of lignin to increase the production of bio-oil and reduce a solid by-product called “char” has been addressed in Iowa State University engineering research and published in Energy & Environmental Science.

CBE’s Shanks named Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Fellow

Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering faculty member Brent Shanks has been named an American Chemical Society (ACS) Industrial & Engineering Chemistry (I&EC) Fellow for the Class of 2023.

Help uphold AIChE student chapter’s tradition of excellence! FundISU page is now available

Twenty Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering undergraduates have made the trip to Phoenix for the AIChE Annual Student Conference. While the experience is definitely worth the trip, it is costly. Prior to departing, the chapter’s faculty advisor Dr. Stephanie Loveland estimated more than $10,000 had been spent on air and hotel reservations and conference registration fees alone. The chapter has established a FundISU page through the Iowa State University Foundation to allow contributions that will help defray some of these costs. Contributions can be made through December 9.

Grad student Dhananjay Dileep is working to make the chemical recycling of plastics more commercially viable

Born into a family of doctors in India, Dhananjay Dileep, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, grew up wanting to help fix the world. Today, Dileep is working toward this goal by making the chemical recycling of plastics more commercially viable.

Phillips 66 CEO, alumnus Mark Lashier to CBE Hall of Fame

Mark Lashier earned a B.S. in chemical engineering at Iowa State University in 1985 and a Ph.D. in 1989. In the years since he has earned respect and recognition as an engineer, business professional and industry leader. The President and Chief Executive Officer of Phillips Petroleum Co. joined the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (CBE) Honors and Awards Banquet where he was inducted into the department’s alumni Hall of Fame.

Four graduate students top CBE’s Perfect Pitch research competition

The comment, “So, tell me about your research!” will be easier to field for CBE’s graduate students who took part in this year’s Perfect Pitch competition. The students once again faced a 90-second time limit (with the aid of one PowerPoint slide) in presenting an “elevator speech” of what their research is all about.

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