Recent Graduates and Newcomers – 2019

Shubham Pinge successfully defended his PhD thesis on mesoscale modeling of directed self-assembly of block copolymer lithography in January and started working at Intel in Portland, Oregon.

Mounica Divvela, successfully defended her PhD thesis on discretized modeling of electrically driven jets and droplets in June and started working in Computational Group at Intel in Portland, Oregon. 

George Shebert successfully defended his PhD thesis on modeling the dynamics of mesoscale materials and electrochemical systems for energy applications in July and started working Intel in Portland, Oregon

Chao-Wen ChangTravis O’NeilLeyan Wang, and Yash Joshi defended their MS thesis this summer.  Chao-Wen started his PhD study at Geogia Tech. this fall, and Leyan joined the PhD program at Nanyang Technical University in Singapore.  Travis started working at Global Research Center in GE in Niskayuna, NY. Yash will continue working in the group as research assistant, studying volume expansion of silicon-graphene hybrid anodes for Li-ion batteries.

Yiqi Shao, Incoming MS student, and Dr. Jongsung Won, postdoc joined group this summer. Yiqi has been working on membrane and electrode development for metal-free chemical flow batteries, Jongsung works on polymer/ceramic hybrid separators and graphene fibers.

Ritika Jain, Sanjana Bharadwaj, Naman Gupta, and Vaidik Shah incoming MS students, joined group in September. Ritika will work on development of polymer-ceramic hybrid separators for Li-sulfur batteries, and Sanjana will model the motionless 3D printing process. Naman and Vaidik will develop graphene/metal hybrids and gel electrolytes for energy storage applications.

Finally, Cecilia Gao and Kyle Kersy, incoming PhD students joined the group. Cecilia who received her BS and MS from Georgia Tech and UC Berkeley will investigate the interplay between the assembly of materials and rate capability in Li-S batteries. Kyle who earned his BS degree in chemical engineering at U Penn will work on the coupling between chemical modification and transport in organic chemical flow batteries.

Recent Graduates and Newcomers

Andrew Shah successfully defended his PhD thesis on modification of membranes and electrodes for Vanadium redox flow batteries in June and started working at Dow Chemical Co. in Midland, Michigan. Andrew was a recipient of the Austin Hooey Graduate Research Excellence Recognition Award in December, 2018 which is awarded to the best PhD student of the year in Chemical Engineering at Cornell to recognize outstanding performance in thesis work and excellent service to the department.

Ghazal Shoorideh started working at Apple and she will come back in January to have her PhD thesis defense. Our senior PhD students, Shubham Pinge and Mounica Divvela, both accepted offers from Intel, and will start working in January and in May, respectively.

Willy Halim, Snatika Sarkar and Rui Zhang defended their MS thesis this spring, summer and fall, respectively. Willy started working at SF Motors, and Snatika works at Conamix. Travis O’Neil, 2nd year MS student, accepted an offer from Edison Engineering Development Program at GE and he will start working at Global Research Center in Niskayuna, NY.

Five first year MS students in the department, Meichun An, Nicole Huang, Jasper Qiu, Avinash Umasankan, and Caspar Yi joined the group. Meichun started working on inclusion of graphene nanoribbon in silicon-graphene hybrid anodes, and Nicole works on non-flammable, high rate polymer-ceramic hybrid separators for Li-ion batteries. Jasper started working on mesocale modeling of line space patterns based on directed self assembly of block copolymer lithography. Avinash works on the tailoring polymeric binder in silicon/graphene electrodes, while Caspar is studying the layer-on-layer approach of sulfur infiltrated mesoporous carbon and graphene for Li-sulfur batteries .

Alumni News

Three former group members started their new academic career as an assistant professor this year. Dr. Ling Fei who was a postdoc in the group (2014 – 2016) took a faculty position in Chemical Engineering Department at University of Louisiana, Lafayette this spring. Our most recent postdoc, Dr. Jin Hong Lee (2017 – 2018) went back to his alma mater, Pusan National University, as an assistant professor in the Department of Organic Material Science and Engineering in August. Finally, Dr. Jay H. Park (PhD ’14) started his academic careers in the Plastics Engineering Department at University of Massachusetts, Lowell from this fall after his postdoctoral work at MIT and US Army Research Laboratory.

PhD Defenses and Newcomers

Joe Carlin and Mohammad Aljishi successfully defended their PhD thesis in August and November. Joe joined Axium Nano to develop next generation separator materials, and Mohammad went back to Saudi Aramco who sponsored his PhD program at Cornell.

Four first year MS students in the department, Travis O’Neil, Chao-Wen Chang, Leyan Wang and Josh Yashi, joined the group. Travis started working on polymer-ceramic hybrid separators for Li-air batteries, and Chao-Wen is studying moisture barrier films based on layering graphene/polymer hybrids. Leyan and Josh work on encapsulating silicon particles and hybridizing silicon with graphite, respectively, for Li-ion battery anode applications.

PhD defenses and Newcomers

Jangwoo Kim and Zhenia (Yevgen) Zhmayev successfully defended their PhD thesis in November and January. Jangwoo joined IBM develop next generation battery materials, and Zhenia started working in BASF in Germany as a senior research engineer.

Christopher Klaassen, 1st PhD student in the department joined the group. Chris graduated from Texas Tech University, and will work on controlling assembly of catalysts and graphene in Li-Air Battery Cathodes. Dr. Jin Hong Lee from KIST (Korea Institute of Science and Technology) also joined the group as a postdoc. Jin Hong earned his PhD degree on ionogel electrolyte materials for Li-ion batteries from Seoul National University, and will be working on the development of high rate, high capacity Li-Sulfur batteries.

Defenses and Newcomers

Mayank Jhalaria and Mounica Divvela successfully defended their MS thesis in July. Mayank joined the PhD Program in Chemical Engineering at Columbia University in September, and Mounica moved on to our PhD Program, continuing working on the mesoscale modeling of gas-assisted electrospinning and air-controlled electrospray.

Brian Williams also successfully defended his PhD thesis in August. He joined Axium Nano where he works on the development of mesoporous carbon materials and flexible Li-S batteries.

Dr. Seung Wan Kim joined the group as a postdoc in September. He received his PhD in Materials Science & Engineering at KAIST in 2011. Before he joined the group, he worked in the Open Innovation Team and Technology Planning Group at Samsung SDI as senior research engineer and project manager for LIB anode development for five years. He will take over Dr. Ling Fei’s work on silicon/graphene hybrid anode materials.

Christopher Klaassen, 1st year PhD student, joined the group. Chris received his BS in chemical engineering from Texas Tech Universiity, and will be working on creating synergy between graphene and redox mediator for Li-air battery cathodes.

Rui Zhang and Snatika Sarkar, 1st year MS students, also joined the group. Rui will work on flexible Li-S batteries based on directly deposited sulfur containing block copolymer and reduced graphene oxide, and Snatika will work on the chemical modification of mesoporous carbon nanofibers for energy storage applications.

Awards, Defense, and Newcomer

Andrew Shah, 3rd year PhD student in the group, received the Outstanding Graduate TA of the Year Award this year. Andrew TAed ChemE 3320, Analysis of Separation Processes, in the Spring semester. This TA of the Year Award is chosen by the undergraduates and faculty in the department.

The poster on Photo/stress/time Sensitive Nanomaterials for Webbing Products by Mani Korah, Hongshen Liu and Zhenia Zhmayev in the group has been selected as the 1st place at the CCMR Symposium Poster Competition on May 27. The best poster was chosen by the industrial participants of the Symposium and Cornell faculty.

Soshana Smith successfully defended her PhD thesis in May. She will start working at Axium Nano in July where she will develop polymer-ceramic hybrid separators for Li-ion batteries.

Willy Halim, new MS student in the department, joined the group. Willy received his MEng degree from the Department in May, and started working on the controlling micro and meso pores in conductive carbon for Li-sulfur battery cathode application.


Newcomers and Defenses

Mohammed AlAmer, 1st year PhD student, joined the group in the fall. He received his BS degree from McGill University in Canada in 2012, and had been working at Saudi Aramco before he was selected to pursue his PhD under the Saudi Aramco Fellowship. He will be studying catalytic reactions in a model Taylor-Couette reactor.

Runbang Tang, MS student in the department, also joined the group in the fall. He will be working on the study of the effect of mesopores in a carbon substrate on the performance of Li-sulfur batteries.

Shubham Pinge and Sri Dithya Atluri successfully defended their MS thesis. Shubham is now in our PhD program continuing working on mesoscale modeling of directed self assembly for lithography, and Sri started working at Inspire Energy in February.