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.

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.

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.

Testing hybrid, soft/hard nanocarriers to deliver drugs to the brain

Rizia Bardhan made a fist with one hand then covered it with her other hand, like a baseball player catching a ball in the web of a fielder’s glove.

The fist represents a special nanocarrier filled with medicine, said the Iowa State University associate professor of chemical and biological engineering. The other hand represents a cell working out whether to catch that nanoparticle then take it, drugs and all, across its protective membrane into its interior.

Chowdhury, Kozminsky, Wang join CBE faculty in fall semester

The Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering welcomes three new faculty members: Ratul Chowdhury, Molly Kozminsky and Jing Wang, who are beginning their appointments in the fall 2022 semester. All will be tenure-track assistant professors.

CBE research group’s article featured on the cover of the Journal of the American Chemical Society

The work being done by the research groups of Chemical and Biological Engineering professors Eric Cochran, Brent Shanks, and Jean-Philippe Tessonnier is making headlines. The article “ Bioenabled Platform to Access Polyamides with Built-In Target Properties,” which is a result of their research, has been featured on the June cover of the Journal of the American Chemical Society (JACS).

Expanded BioMaP undergrad research program underway with 18 students

Students from Iowa State University and around the nation are settling in for a summer of hands-on research work with ISU’s Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (CBE) with the BioMaP Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates.

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