Category Archives: Research


Local ACS Chapter Hosts 2017 Student Research Symposium

ACS SRS RoomThe Upper Peninsula Local Section of the American Chemistry Society invites you to the 2017 Student Research Symposium. This year’s research symposium will be held on Northern Michigan’s campus within the atrium of the New Science Facility on Saturday, March 25. The event starts at 9:30 a.m.

The purpose of the event is to provide a venue for students to present their research in chemistry, chemical engineering and related fields. This symposium is an excellent opportunity for students, faculty and the community at large to learn about the interesting research being conducted in the UP. More details can be found online.

You can also check out our Facebook page for more information.

All are welcome. There is no charge to attend. RSVP here.

By Robert Handler, Chemical Engineering.


Caryn Heldt Featured in SWE People

Caryn Heldt
Caryn Heldt

The Society of Women Engineers highlighted the teaching and research efforts of Caryn Heldt (ChE) in their Winter 2017 issue of SWE Magazine.

RECOGNIZED FOR TEACHING AND RESEARCH

Caryn L. Heldt, Ph.D., associate professor of chemical engineering at Michigan Technological University, was named the recipient of the James and Lorna Mack Endowed Chair in Bioengineering. Her endowed chair is named for James Mack, a Michigan Tech alumnus and retired president and CEO of Cambex Corp., a developer of specialty chemicals. His company has successfully combined biology with engineering — especially in the rapidly emerging field of tissue engineering and cell therapy and the development of small molecule therapeutics.

Read more at SWE People.


Michigan Tech Partners in Department of Energy Research Institute

REMADEMichigan Technological University is one of 85 partners in a US Department of Energy-funded $70 million energy-saving project called the REMADE (Reducing Embodied-energy and Decreasing Emissions) Institute.

The project’s goal is to drive down the cost of technologies needed to reuse, recycle and remanufacture materials such as metals, fibers, polymers and electronic waste.  Ultimately REMADE hopes to achieve a 50 percent improvement in overall energy efficiency by 2027.

Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Jennifer Donovan.


Vitamins and Tears Make the News

TearsTechCentury, an engineering and technology news website published by the Engineering Society of Detroit, reported on research into vitamins and tears, by Maryam Khaksari and Adrienne Minerick (ChemEng). Read the story here.

In the News

Vitamins in tears may be an alternative to invasive bloodwork demonstrated by research led by Adrienne Minerick (ChE, CoE) and Maryam Khaksari (ChE, ChARM Lab).

Several science news outlets covered the story including Fit Pregnancy and Baby, TechCentury and Counsel & Heal. A number of science blogs also picked up the story: Bioscience Technology, BioSpace, Bionity.com and ScienMag.

Several more science news outlets covered the story including a Q&A on MedicalResearch.com, Lab Manager Magazine, NutraIngredients and an article in the French magazine Parents and Italian magazine Corrierre. A number of science blogs picked up the story in Italian, English and French.


SFI Works with LanzaTech on DOE Awarded Facility

Digital Journal reported on a $4 million U.S. Department of Energy grant to LanzaTech to design and plan a demonstration-scale facility using industrial off gases to produce 3M gallons/year of low carbon jet and diesel fuels. Michigan Tech’s Sustainable Futures Institute will help them evaluate the environmental footprint of the fuel produced.

LanzaTech Awarded $4M from DOE for Low Carbon Jet & Diesel Demonstration Facility

CHICAGO, IL–(Marketwired – Dec 30, 2016) – Carbon recycling company, LanzaTech, has been selected by the Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) to receive a $4M award to design and plan a demonstration-scale facility using industrial off gases to produce 3M gallons/year of low carbon jet and diesel fuels.

Professor David Shonnard, Director, Sustainable Futures Institute, Michigan Technological University:

The Michigan Tech Sustainable Futures Institute is excited to continue our relationship with LanzaTech, helping them innovate and develop products that meet environmental goals in addition to technical and economic targets.

Read more at Digital Journal.


Shonnard is an Invited Panelist

David Shonnard
David Shonnard

David Shonnard (Robbins Chair, ChE) and Robert Handler (SFI) have been invited as panelists in a breakout session at the Alternative Aviation Fuel Workshop hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) in Macon, Georgia September 14-15, 2016.

Handler will attend and join other experts from government, industry and academia to promote the environmental sustainability of biofuels in the aviation industry. Further information can be obtained from Handler at 7-3612 or rhandler@mtu.edu.

From Tech Today.



Shonnard Delivers SCPPE Keynote Address

David Shonnard
David Shonnard

David Shonnard (ChE/SFI) delivered the keynote address at the 4th International Conference on Sustainable Chemical Product and Process Engineering (SCPPE) held in Nanjing, China from May 31 – June 3, 2016.

The conference was hosted by Nanjing Tech University and the State Key Laboratory of Materials-Oriented Chemical Engineering.

Shonnard provided an update on research into sustainable biofuels through environmental life cycle assessment.

From Tech Today.


Unscripted: To Purify a Virus

Allison Mills Interviews Caryn Heldt
Allison Mills Interviews Caryn Heldt

A new theory about virus surfaces—that they’re hydrophobic—has opened up new processes to improve vaccine production, potentially making them more affordable around the world.

Virus Flocculation

Virus hydrophobicity is the focus of research by Caryn Heldt, an associate professor of chemical engineering, who won a National Science Foundation (NSF) Early Career Award grant. Heldt’s CAREER Award will help her explore a process that causes viruses to clump, making them easier to remove.

Our focus for purification is for improved vaccine manufacturing. Reducing cost could increase adaption around the world.

Read more and watch the video at Unscripted, by Allison Mills.