Brown Engineers Win Seven Awards at AIChE National Meeting

Several Brown University engineering students attended the 2014 American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) Annual Meeting in November in Atlanta. Six undergraduate engineering students and one graduate student returned to Providence with awards.

During the meeting, the Nanoscale Science and Engineering forum hosted an award session to honor graduate students whose research achievements, in the broad area of carbon nanomaterials, demonstrate a high level of excellence. Finalists were selected based on their abstract submissions and then presented their work in the award session to a panel of judges. Brown chemical and biochemical engineering fifth year doctoral student Megan Creighton was awarded the first place prize for her research on "Molecular Barrier Functions of Graphene Oxide in Liquid-Liquid Systems." She is advised by Professor Robert Hurt.

Image removed.Brown undergraduate team at AIChE annual meeting Nine undergraduates attended the national meeting and competed in the national poster competition, including Helen Bergstrom '15, Anna Brown '16, Theresa Cloutier '15, Jenna Ditto '15, Collin Felton '15, Naser Mahfouz '15, Danna Nozik '16, Rebecca Pinals '16, and Finn van Kreiken '15.

"It was another strong showing from our students in the national competition," said faculty advisor Indrek Kulaots. "The students represented Brown well, and deserved to be congratulated for their efforts."

More than 200 posters were presented, and the competition was divided into ten topic areas, and the topic areas were broken down further into subgroups.

Nozik presented in the materials engineering and sciences VII subgroup and won first place. She presented a poster entitled, "Biohybrid Fibro-porous Vascular Scaffolds: Effect of Crosslinking on Properties." Her poster was based on research she conducted over the summer at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Bergstrom presented in the sustainability category, and won second place. She presented a poster titled, "Rethinking the Traditional Wall- Textile Wall Assembly Systems for Healthier, Energy-Efficient Structures." Her work was the product of a collaboration between Brown University, RISD, and FHE Erfurt (Germany), and she worked with faculty advisor Derek Stein.

Brown presented her poster titled, "Multiple Wavelength Interferometry for the Characterization of Material Properties," and won second place in the materials engineering and sciences VI subgroup. Her poster was based on research she conducted over the summer at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She is advised at Brown by Indrek Kulaots.

Mahfouz presented his poster titled, "Graphene Oxide-based Materials for Environmental and Selective Barriers," and won third place in the separations category. Professor Robert Hurt is his faculty advisor.

Cloutier competed in the Food, Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology category and won third place for her poster entitled, "Towards Inducing hMSC Chondrogenesis in Hydrogels through Treatment with Kartogenin." She is advised by Assistant Professor Anita Shukla.

Pinals won third place in the Materials Engineering and Sciences V subgroup. She presented a poster entitled, "Band-Gap Tuning of Colloidal Silicon-Based Quantum Dots by Surface Functionalization Using Conjugated Organic Ligands." Her poster was based on research she conducted over the summer at the Colorado School of Mines. She is advised at Brown by Assistant Professor Andrew Peterson.