New Refrigerant in Watson Library

University of Kansas testing new environmentally friendly refrigerant in Watson Library

The University of Kansas is testing a new environmentally friendly refrigerant in a Watson Library air-conditioning chiller.  Built in 1924, Watson Library is the oldest and largest of KU’s libraries.  The library has two York chillers that operate on refrigerant HFC-134a. The American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) act requires the production and use of hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants in the U.S. to be phased down by 85% over the next 15 years. The global reduction in HFCs is expected to avoid up to 0.5 °C in global temperature rise.  Foundation Distinguished Professor Mark B. Shiflett in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering is leading a research effort to develop new technology for efficiently recycling and repurposing HFC refrigerants called Project EARTH. Professor Shiflett working with the Chemours Company, Johnson Controls, Inc. (JCI), and KU facilities retrofitted one of the two York chillers to a new environmentally-friendly replacement for HFC-134a called Opteon™ XP10 (R-513A), which is a non-ozone depleting, low-global warming hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) refrigerant. R-513A has a 56% reduction in global warming potential (GWP) compared with HFC-134a and is compatible with existing equipment designs. Professor Shiflett stated, “We are grateful to Chemours who donated the refrigerant and JCI who provided the labor for this first side by side comparison of R-513A and HFC-134a in two 900-ton York commercial-scale chillers. Mechanical engineering seniors as part of their Capstone senior design course monitored the baseline performance of HFC-134a. A chemical engineering graduate student will monitor the cooling capacity and energy efficiency of R-513A this summer and we are expecting the performance to be equivalent to HFC-134a. This is a great example of how industry is partnering with our new Institute for Sustainable Engineering at KU (, which is making a positive impact on our environment.”

News & Events

Chemical & Petroleum Engineering Awards Banquet

Several of our group members were honored at the departmental awards banquet.

Nicole Montoya (top left) – Outstanding Master’s Chemical Engineering Research Award
Madelyn Bennett (top center) – Outstanding Academic Achievement Award (GPA 3.95 or higher), Academic Honors Award (GPA 3.5 or higher)
Lucia Matamoros Valenciano (top right) – Academic Honors Award (GPA 3.5 or higher)
Daniel Cho (middle row left) – Academic Honors Award (GPA 3.5 or higher)
Max Cordry (middle row center)– Fred Kurata Thermodynamics Award
Alex Henne (middle row right), Sophia Terian (bottom left), Nathan Ohl, and Melvin Loo – Best Senior Chemical Engineering Laboratory Group
Sophia Terian (bottom left) – Academic Honors Award (GPA 3.5 or higher)
Hannah Uhl (bottom center) – Outstanding Junior in Chemical Engineering
Sarah Dixon (bottom right) – Outstanding Sophomore in Chemical Engineering

Prof. Mark Shiflett awarded KU’s highest research achievement award

Congratulations! Prof. Mark Shiflett was awarded the 2023 Higuchi – Irvin Youngberg Research Award in Applied Sciences for his work to develop sustainable processes and products for the chemical industry. The Higuchi Research Achievement Awards are KU’s highest award for faculty accomplishments in research, scholarship, and creative activity. The awards are designed to recognize significant research achievement conducted at the University of Kansas or any other Regents institution.

-Published on: 4/30/2023

DOE EnergyTech University National Competition

Grad students Kalin Baca and Abby Harders participated in a competition put on by the Department of Energy. They won 3rd place for their presentation about utilizing membrane technology and extractive distillation to separate and recycle complex refrigerant mixtures at the end of their life. 184 teams from 124 schools across 44 states participated in the EnergyTech competition. Read more about the competition here. Well done, Kalin and Abby!

-Published on: 4/11/2023

Goodbye, Dr. Rajkumar Kore!

We celebrated Dr. Rajkumar Kore who has worked five years with Prof. Shiflett’s research group and wish him well in his new position at INVISTA.

-Published on: 3/18/2023

Separation of Refrigerant Mixtures using Membranes

PhD student Abby Harders recently published a new paper:

Solubility, Diffusivity, and Permeability of HFC-32 and HFC-125 in Amorphous Copolymers of Perfluoro(butenyl vinyl ether) and Perfluoro(2,2-dimethyl-1,3-dioxole)

Authors: Abby N. Harders, Erin R. Sturd, Luke Wallisch, Hannes Schmidt, Yuniva Mendoza-Apodaca, David R. Corbin, Whitney White, Christopher P. Junk and Mark B. Shiflett

-Published on: 2-14-2022

2022 AIChe Poster Awards

Claire Sabolay – 1st Place | Environmental Group 1 & 3rd Place | Environmental Division

Dorothy Haggard – 2nd Place Separations Group 1

Lucia Matamoros Valenciano – 3rd Place | Separations Group 1 

Congratulations to Claire, Dorothy, and Lucia!

-Published on: 12/06/2022

2022 AIChe Conference

  1. AIChE Poster Session 11-15-2022 “Prof. Aaron Scurto, Karim Al-Barghouti, Kalin Baca, Andrew Yancey, Abby Harders, and Prof. Mark Shiflett at AIChE Phoenix Poster Session, 11-15-2022”
  2. Abby Mark AIChE 11-14-2022 “Abby Harders and Prof. Mark Shiflett at AIChE RAPID poster session, Phoenix AZ, 11-15-2022”
  3. AIChE EFRI In-person Meeting 11-16-2022 “NSF EFRI Research Team at AIChE Phoenix 2022 meeting, 11-16-2022”

-Published on: 11/30/2022

Congratulations, Raj!

Congratulations to Dr. Raj Kore and his wife Vidya who had a baby boy, named Virajas, born on Monday, Nov 7, 2022!

-Published on: 11/11/2022

3 Minute Thesis

Ms. Kalin Baca, PhD student, Chemical Engineering, took 2nd Place Overall in the University of Kansas, 3 Minute Thesis Competition.  The title of her presentation was “Recycling Refrigerants to Reduce Global Warming”.

Way to go Kalin!

-Published on: 11/11/2022

Fall 2022 AIChe Conference

Sunday, Nov 13 – Friday, Nov 18, 2022
Phoenix Convention Center
Phoenix, Arizona

The Shiflett Research Group has 15 presentations and posters covering a variety of research topics from refrigerant separations to PFAS removal to undergraduate laboratory education. 

Felipe AnayaA State-of-the-Art Pilot-Scale Distillation Column for the Unit Operations Laboratory at the University of Kansas15-Nov4:32-4:50W-105BOral
Felipe AnayaA Novel Approach for Laboratory Experiments in Process Dynamics and Control15-Nov6:02-6:20W-105BOral
Ethan Finber/MarkShiflettSeparation of Azeotropic Refrigerant Mixtures Using Extractive Distillation with Ionic Liquid Entrainers14-Nov4:48-5:06N-132AOral
Madelyn BennettChlorine Stability of Bio-Inspired Liquid Infused Membranes14-Nov11:00-1:30North Hall EPoster
Kalin BacaPhase Equilibria for HFC-32, HFC-125, and Binary Mixtures (R-410A) with a Variety of Ionic Liquids15-Nov4:30-6:00North Hall EPoster
Andrew YanceyPhase Equilibria for HFC-32, HFC-125, and Binary Mixtures (R-410A) with a Variety of Ionic Liquids15-Nov4:30-6:00North Hall EPoster
Karim Al-BarghoutiPhase Equilibrium and Transport Properties of Water and Ionic Liquids Used in Biomass Processing14-Nov10:20-10:40N-223Oral
Clarice SabolayRemoving Pfas from Water Using Zeolites: Cheaper and More Efficient14-Nov11:00-1:30North Hall EPoster
Kalin BacaProject Earth (Environmentally Applied Research Towards Hydrofluorocarbons) Ionic Liquids Approach15-Nov4:30-6:00North Hall EPoster
Abby HardersSeparation of HFC-32, HFC-125, HFC-134a, HCFC-22, and HFO-1234yf Using Copolymers of Perfluoro(butenyl vinyl ether) and Perfluoro(2,2-dimethyl-1,3-dioxole)15-Nov4:30-6:00North Hall EPoster
Dorothy HaggardInvestigation of Imidazolium-Based Ionic Liquids with the Sorption of HFC-32 and HFC-125 Refrigerant Gases14-Nov11:00-1:30North Hall EOral
Lucia ValencianoMeasuring Heat of Absorption for Hydrofluorocarbon Refrigerants and Ionic Liquids14-Nov11:00-1:30North Hall EPoster
Charles PongeAdsorption of Pfas By Zeolites14-Nov6:35-7:00N-225AOral
Ethan Finberg/Mark ShiflettSeparation of Refrigerant Mixtures Using Extractive Distillation with Ionic Liquid Entrainers15-Nov4:30-6:00North Hall EPoster
Andrew YanceyThe Use of Zeolites and Carbons for the Separation of Refrigerant R-410A: Thermodynamic Modeling of Pure Gas and Binary Sorption16-Nov3:36-3:54N-131COral
KU Evening Reception13-Nov8:15-10:15N-121ABKU Evening Reception

-Published on: 10/17/2022

Separation of Refrigerant Mixtures

Our graduate student, Andrew Yancey-Jardon, recently published a new paper:

Separation of Azeotropic Hydrofluorocarbon Refrigerant Mixtures: Thermodynamic and Kinetic Modeling for Binary Adsorption of HFC-32 and HFC-125 on Zeolite 5A

Authors: Andrew D. Yancey, Dr. Darren P. Broom, Mark G. Roper, Dr. Michael J. Benham, Dr. David R. Corbin, Prof. Mark B. Shiflett

-Published on: 9/05/2022

Ionic Liquids Research Posters

Kalin Baca and Dorothy Haggard both presented Research Posters at the “2022 Gordon Research Conference on Ionic Liquids” that was held in Newry, Maine, Aug 7 – 12, 2022.  Kalin received recognition and an award for one of the top-4 posters out of 85 posters presented at the conference

-Published on: 8/14/2022

Ethan Finberg, M.S. Chemical Engineering

Congratulations to Ethan Finberg who successfully defended his M.S. Chemical Engineering Thesis entitled “Refrigerant Separation with Extractive Distillation using Ionic Liquid Entrainers”.

-Published: 6/03/2022

New Refrigerant in Watson Library

University of Kansas testing new environmentally friendly refrigerant in Watson Library. Learn more here.

-Published: 5/16/2022

Nicole Montoya, M.S. Chemical Engineering

Congratulations to Nicole Montoya who successfully defended her M.S. Chemical Engineering Thesis entitled “Protein Thermal Stabilization and Delivery via Adsorption onto Porous Silicas”.

-Published: 5/11/2022

Top Scientists Worldwide

Prof. Mark B. Shiflett, Foundation Distinguished Professor, is among the top scientists worldwide. Dr. Shiflett was selected as one of the Top 2% of Scientists Worldwide from over 9 million scientists. The list is compiled by experts at Stanford University, based on number of publication citations. Congratulations, Dr. Shiflett!

-Published: 4/29/2022

2022 Chemical Engineering Departmental Awards

Recently the University of Kansas’ Department of Chemical Engineering held its annual awards ceremony. Three of our members were honored at the ceremony. Senior Greta Olsen won Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher. Erin Sturd won Most Outstanding Senior. Nicholas Reding won the Frank Bowdish Outstanding PhD award. Join us in congratulating Greta Olsen, Erin Sturd, and Nicholas Reding for their accomplishments!

-Published on: 4/26/2022

Tour of KU Natural History Museum

The Shiflett Research group recently visited the University of Kansas Natural History Museum. The museum contains a variety of exhibits, such as the Panorama shown here, which contains animal mounts dating back to 1893.

-Published on: 12/17/2021

2021 Graduation!

This past weekend was the graduation ceremony for Ankit Verma. Congratulations, Dr. Verma on successfully obtaining your PhD in Chemical Engineering!

-Published on: 12/17/2021

Congratulations, Nick and Ankit!

Congratulations to Nick Reding and Ankit Verma for graduating this semester and completing their PhDs! Shown here are photos from our celebration of Nick and Ankit’s time at KU.

-Published on: 11/29/2021

REU Presentations

This summer, five REU students joined the Shiflett Research Group to gain hands on experience in a variety of research areas. The photos above show the students giving presentations over their research projects.

-Published on: 5/31/2021

2021 Summer Picnic

The Shiflett, Allgeier, Scurto, and Morais Research Groups recently came together for a summer picnic and enjoyed food, games, and community.

-Published on: 7/19/2021

On the Run!

The Shiflett and Allgeier Research group recently participated in the GEAK 5K run! Ph.D candidate Ankit Verma placed 3rd overall in the men’s division of the race!

-Published on: 5/31/2021

Journal of Ionic Liquids

Dr. Shiflett has been selected by Elsevier to be the first Editor-In-Chief of the newly launched journal entitled “Journal of Ionic Liquids”.  A link to the Journal of Ionic Liquids can be found here:  

The journal will publish papers on the broad field of ionic liquids that include topics such as thermophysical properties, coatings, catalysis and chemical reactions, interfacial phenomena, lubricants, materials, membranes, molecular modeling, polymers, separations, scale-up, toxicity, and more.

The Journal of Ionic Liquids will be the first journal dedicated to the exciting and expanding field of ionic liquids.

-Published on: 5/19/2021

Congrats, Dr. Shiflett!

Dr. Shiflett recently received the 2021 University of Kansas Gould Award in Advising. The Gould Award is offered to an outstanding advisor nominated by students in the School of Engineering. Congratulations Dr. Shiflett!

-Published on: 5/19/2021

Congratulations, Madelyn!

Madelyn Bennet, an undergraduate researcher who works under Kalin Baca in Project EARTH, was chosen as the University of Kansas “Most Outstanding Sophomore in Chemical Engineering”. Congratulations, Madelyn!

Congratulations, Raj!

Dr. Raj Kore, a post doctoral researcher in the Shiflett Research Group, recently became a father to Rajvi, the newest little jayhawk in our group! Congratulations Raj!

Greetings from the Shiflett Research Group

The Shiflett Research Group recently took a photoshoot to celebrate the unique gifts that each one of our member brings to our group. T-shirts were made for all of our members with a word of their choice. We are happy to have such a unique group of people contributing to science and the community at the University of Kansas.

New Book Chapter!

A chapter entitled “A Sustainable Oxalate Process for Recovery of Metals from LiCoO2: Experimental and Modeling Study” by PhD student Ankit Verma, Dr. David Corbin and Dr. Mark Shiflett has been published in the “Ni-Co 2021: The 5th International Symposium on Nickel and Cobalt.” To learn more, follow the link below:

-Published on: 4/07/2021

Congrats, Erin!

Erin Sturd, a researcher in the membrane program of Project EARTH, was recently awarded the Undergraduate Research Award (UGRA) for the Spring 2021 semester. Erin is working on the development of mixed matrix membranes for the selective separation of hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants. Congratulations, Erin!

-Published on: 3/30/2021

New Publication!

A paper entitled “Effect of Particle Morphology on Metal Dust Explosion Severity and Sensitivity” by co-authors Nicholas Reding and Ankit Verma has been published in the Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries. To learn more about this paper, follow the link below!

-Published on: 3/30/2021

Congratulations to our undergraduate researchers!

Madelyn Bennett and Lucia Matamoros were selected as SELF Engineering Fellows for the 2023 cohort. SELF fellows will develop their communication, business, engineering, leadership, managerial, entrepreneurial and interpersonal skills with an enrichment program. Additionally they will receive the SELF Undergraduate Scholarship. Greta Olsen won the Gerald Lage award, which implies: lettering in athletics, completing 100 credit hours, and having abound a 3.8 GPA. It is the highest academic honor given by the Big 12 Conference to student athletes. Madelyn, Lucia and Greta are all members of Project EARTH’s ionic liquids team. Congratulations!

-Published on: 3/30/2021

Congratulations, Ankit!

Ankit Verma received the 1st place KU presentation award at the Capitol Graduate Research Summit held virtually this year. This summit provides an opportunity for selected graduate students to expose state government, education officials, and the public to the quality of graduate research performed in the state of Kansas. Ankit’s research focuses on the development of sustainable processes for recovery of critical metals using oxalate chemistry and in this summit, he presented his work on the sustainable process for recycling of spent lithium-ion batteries. For more information, see the following link:

-Published on: 1/24/2021

Koerner Family Foundation Supplemental Stipend Award

Congratulations to Nick Reding on being selected to receive a $10K supplemental stipend award from the Koerner Family Foundation! The Koerner Family Foundation aspires to promote growth for engineers working to uncover innovative solutions to future challenges. Funding from this foundation will act as direct support for continued research on metal dust combustion dynamics and potential explosion protection methods.

-Published on: 1/14/2021

We are still accepting applications for the 2021 REU program in the Chemical and Petroleum Engineering department at the University of Kansas. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn about porous materials and grow as a researcher and scientist! The program will take place from May 24-July 30, 2021. The application deadline is January 25th, 2021. Apply at

-Published on: 1/12/2021

Project EARTH, a collaborative project focused on developing environmentally friendly methods of separating refrigerant mixtures that contribute to global warming, has been featured on the DOE Office of Science homepage! Click the following link to view our post!

-Published on: 12/12/2020

Congratulations, Nicole!

Project SAVE just published their first paper and made it to the cover of Langmuir! In this publication Nicole Montoya and other members of Project SAVE discuss how to adsorb proteins into mesoporous silica to conserve protein structure and activity. Project SAVE is eager to build upon this work and begin adsorbing the influenza vaccine and one of the key proteins in the COVID-19 protein based vaccine.

-Published on: 12/12/2020

New Publication!

A new publication entitled “Thermochemical Insights into Stability and Hydration of Ion-Exchanged Zeolite ZK-5 (KFI Framework)” was published in “The Journal of Physical Chemistry C”. Ankit Verma, Dr. David Corbin, and Dr. Mark Shiflett co-authored this paper in collaboration with Dr. Navrotsky’s group at Arizona State University. This thermochemical study demonstrates the critical role of extra-framework cations and documents the complexity of ion exchange effects in zeolites with complicated topology and cation distribution. To learn more about this paper, click on the following link: doi=10.1021/acs.jpcc.0c06796&ref=pdf

-Published on: 12/01/2020

Project EARTH (Environmentally Applied Research Towards Hydrofluorocarbons) was recently featured in “KU Discoveries” online magazine. Project EARTH is focused on how to effectively recycle and repurpose hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants to reduce their impact on global warming and climate change. The project is supported by a four-year, $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation and is a collaboration between the University of Kansas, University of Notre Dame, Texas A&M University, and Rutgers University.  In addition, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and several private companies are working closely with the Project EARTH team. To read the full article, click the link below:

Researchers will develop green technology to recycle refrigerants that drive climate change | The University of Kansas (

-Published on: 12/01/2020

Join the Shiflett Research Group at the 2020 AIChE Meeting!

The 2020 Virtual AIChe Meeting is this week! The Shiflett Research Group has 18 presentations and posters covering a variety of different research topics and interests. If you are interested in attending any of the conference talks or poster sessions, here are helpful resources to help you navigate this year’s virtual conference:

-Published on: 11/16/2020

A Novel Chemical Engineering Laboratory Model at the University of Kansas

Ethan Finberg, along with David Griffin and Mark Shiflett, recently published a paper on the KU Senior Chemical Engineering Lab course in the journal, Chemical Engineering Education. This publication explains how this unique course structure is able to enroll up to 92 students and teach three experiments with safety tours, presentations, and reports over the duration of a semester. This publication also discusses the experimental apparatuses used to produce accurate and repeatable results. All apparatuses are portable to efficiently utilize the limited lab space or be displayed in the classroom for teaching purposes. Congratulations Ethan!

-Published on: 11/10/2020

New Industry Collaboration

DOE Project

KU joins industry partners to advance gas-separation with green materials first created for soda bottles

A $1 million, 18-month collaboration between the University of Kansas School of Engineering and the RAPID Manufacturing Institute for Process Intensification launched in 2017 by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers will develop technology to separate gas using renewable, high-performance furanic-based polymers that were originally developed for replacing PET-based soda bottles. Click the above link to read more about this exciting project!

-Published on: 10/15/2020


Join us at our monthly safety meetings!

1The Chemical and Petroleum Engineering Department (C&PE) is holding monthly safety meetings on the 3rd Wednesday of each month from 9:00 – 9:45 a.m. in the Breen Conference Center (ground floor of Slawson Hall).  The meetings are also available via Zoom. Anyone is welcome to attend. Interested in presenting a safety topic at an upcoming meeting?  Contact Dr. Berlyn Mellein ( Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to get updates about upcoming meetings!

-Published on: 10/10/2020


Congratulations Kalin, Abby, Ana, and Greta!

Project EARTH Logo 1A new publication entitled “Phase Equilibria, Diffusivities, and Equation of State Modeling of HFC-32 and HFC-125 in Imidazolium-Based Ionic Liquids for the Separation of R-410A” authored by graduate students Abby Harders and Kalin Baca, former post-doctoral researcher Ana Morais, and undergraduate researcher Greta Olsen was recently published in the Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research. This paper was a collaborative effort between Project EARTH researchers in the Shiflett Research Group and Dr. Edward Maginn’s research group at the University of Notre Dame.  Click the following link to learn more!

-Published on: 9/19/2020

Congratulations, Ankit!


Congratulations to Ankit Verma, co-inventor on International Patent WO 2020/086509A1 that was recently published.  The patent claims cover the use of oxalate-based reagents for the recovery and separation of Li and Co from used lithium-ion battery (LIB) cathodes.  Cobalt in particular is a critical metal with limited supply and methods for the economical recycle of Li and Co will be important in the future as the LIB market rapidly expands

-Published on: 9/19/2020

New Publication!

A paper entitled “Power generation from waste heat: Ionic liquid‐based absorption cycle versus organic Rankine cycle” where Dr. Shiflett was one of the authors has been published in the AIChE Journal. To learn more about this paper, click the link below!

-Published on: 9/16/2020

Grant Announcement

Prof. Mark Shiflett and Prof. Aaron Scurto were recently awarded a $2,000,000 Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation (EFRI) grant to study the separation and recycling of high global warming potential (GWP) refrigerant mixtures.  Project EARTH (Environmentally Applied Research Towards Hydrofluorocarbon) will use a combination of experiments, advanced computer simulations, and rigorous analytical methods to discover, synthesize, and test ionic liquids that are efficient at separating azeotropic hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) mixtures.  The research will be conducted by a team of researchers located at the University of Kansas (lead institution), the University of Notre Dame, Texas A&M University, and Rutgers University in collaboration with Brookhaven National Lab, Oak Ridge National Lab and the National Institute of Standards and Technology along with two industry partners (Chemours and Iolitec). The technical, economic, and environmental impacts of Project EARTH is immense, given the millions of kilograms of high GWP refrigerants that must be removed from the market. The market for recycling refrigerants is valued at more than a billion dollars and preventing the release of high-GWP refrigerants into the Earth’s atmosphere is equivalent to eliminating 175 million metric tons of CO2 (or annual emissions from 50 million cars).

-Published on: 9/01/2020

Congrats, Rajkumar!

Raj New Pic Profile 1986 ResizeA review paper by Dr. Rajkumar Kore, a post-doctoral researcher in the Shiflett Research Group, recently got accepted in the Journal of Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research. His paper is entitled “Review of Isobutane Alkylation Technology Using Ionic Liquid-Based Catalysts – Where Do We Stand?” Click below to read more!


-Published on: 8/16/2020

New Publication!

Graphical AbstractA paper entitled “A Review of Porous Adsorbents for the Separation of Nitrogen from Natural Gas, Industrial Engineering Chemistry Research” authored by former post-doctoral researcher Sachin U. Nandanwar, senior scientist David R. Corbin, and Dr. Shiflett was recently published in Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research. Click the following link to read more!


-Published on: 7/26/2020

Abby-gradCongratulations, Grad!

Abby Harders, a student who joined the Shiflett Research Group as a researcher in the 2019 KU Chemical Engineering REU Program, graduated from Bethel College this past weekend. Abby graduated Summa Cum Laude with a 4.0 GPA and earned a BA in Chemistry and Mathematics. Abby was recently named a University of Kansas Chancellor’s Fellow and will begin her doctorate research this summer.  Join us in congratulating Abby for graduating from Bethel College with the highest of honors! To view the Bethel College Virtual Commencement, including 30-second videos by Abby and the other Bethel graduates, click the link below!

-Published on: 5/18/2020

Congratulations Nick!

nicholas-reding-e1510252020809Nick Reding has successfully completed his PhD Comprehensive Exam. Nick’s proposal was titled “Design of Effective Energy Storage System Ventilation Techniques: Correlating Initial Turbulence to Hydrogen Deflagration Severity”. Join us in congratulating Nick for his success in completing his Comprehensive Exam!

-Published on: 5/16/2020

Congratulations Tugba!

Dr. Tugba Turnaoglu has been named the 2020 Recipient of the Frank Bowdish Outstanding PhD award at the University of Kansas. Tugba defended her thesis on “Phase Behavior of Binary Ionic Liquid Systems:  Ionic Liquids with Ammonia, Carbon Dioxide, and Dihydroxy Alchohols” in December of 2019 and is currently  working as a post-doctoral researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  Join us in congratulating Tugba for receiving this prestigious award!

-Published on: 5/16/2020

Congratulations Ana!

DSC02456Dr. Ana Morais, former Shiflett Research Group post doctoral researcher, recently published a paper in the  AIChE Journal and a paper in Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research. The first paper is titled “Phase equilibrium and diffusivities of hydrofluorocarbons in a synthetic polyol ester lubricant”.  The second paper is titled “Solubility and Diffusivity of Hydrofluoroolefin Refrigerants in a Polyol Ester Lubricant”. Ana is now working at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.  Click the following links to read more about Ana’s papers:

-Published on: 5/08/2020

Congratulations Ankit!

AVermaGraduate student Ankit Verma recently published a paper titled “Separation of Lithium and Cobalt from LiCoO2: A Unique Critical
Metals Recovery Process Utilizing Oxalate Chemistry” in ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering. Click the following link to learn more about Ankit’s work:

-Published on: 5/08/2020

Congratulations David!

dave-minnickDr. David Minnick, former post doctoral research in the Shiflett Research Group, recently published a paper in the Journal of Chemical Engineering Data. David’s paper is entitled “Solubility and Diffusivity of Bromodifluoromethane (Halon-1201) in Imidazolium Ionic Liquids: [C2C1im][Tf2N], [C4C1im][BF4], and [C4C1im][PF6]”.  David is now working as a Research Investigator at DuPont. Click the following link to read more about David’s paper:

-Published on: 5/08/2020

Congratulations Nick!

A paper by Nick Reding, graduate student in the Shiflett Research Group, recently got accepted in the Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries. His paper is entitled “Consequence Prediction for Dust Explosions Involving Interconnected Vessels using Computational Fluid Dynamics Modeling”. Read more about Nick’s paper by clicking the following link:

-Published on: 5/08/2020

Abby Harders named Chancellors Fellow

Abby-HeadshotAbby Harders has been selected to receive the University of Kansas Chancellors Doctoral Fellowship. The Chancellors Doctoral Fellowship is offered yearly to four incoming graduate students across all fields of study at KU who demonstrate the Chancellor’s values for doctoral education—exceptional academic ability and impressive research productivity. The Chancellors Fellowship was created by Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little in 2013 and is being continued by current KU Chancellor, Doug Girod. Join us in congratulating Abby and the other Chancellors Doctoral Fellows!

To learn more about the Chancellors Doctoral Fellowship, see the following link:

-Published on: 5/04/2020

Kalin Baca named SELF Graduate Fellow

40284_2Kalin Baca was recently selected to receive the University of Kansas Madison and Lila SELF Graduate Fellowship. This fellowship is offered to exceptional graduate students who demonstrate the potential to positively contribute to their area of study and to society.  In 1989, Madison and Lila Self created the Self Graduate Fellowship because of their “strong belief in the vital importance of developing leadership for tomorrow”. Join us in congratulating Kalin and 11 other doctoral students for being selected as a Self Graduate Fellow!

To learn more about the SELF Graduate fellowship and this year’s fellows, see the following link:

-Published on: 5/04/2020


Kansas Undergraduate Research Symposium

Greta Olsen, sophomore chemical engineering major, was selected as one of only 5 undergraduates from the University of Kansas – Lawrence campus to present her research at the Kansas Undergraduate Research Symposium held at the Kansas State Capitol on March 4.  Greta is working with a team of graduate students on Project EARTH – Environmentally Applied Research Towards Hydrofluorocarbons, which is developing new methods for separating azeotropic refrigerant mixtures so that they can be recycled, ultimately leading to a lower global warming impact.

-Published on: 3/04/2020

Frontiers Research Day

Nicole Montoya, Graduate student in Dr. Shiflett’s lab, presented a poster entitled “Mesoporous Silica-Immobilized Vaccines for Improving Thermo-tolerance and Shelf-life“ at the Frontiers Research Day at University of Kansas Edwards Campus. Nicole is leading a multi-disciplinary team composed of members from the School of Engineering, KU Structural Biology Center, and Pharmaceutical Chemistry focused on the development of mesoporous silicas to thermally stabilize vaccines so that refrigeration is no longer required

-Published on: 3/04/2020

Commercial Applications of Ionic Liquids

Dr. Shiflett recently published a book titled “Commercial Applications of Ionic Liquids“! Those interested in ordering the book can visit here for more information.

-Published on: 2/19/2020

On the Cover!

Dr. Turnaoglu’s published work, “High-Pressure Vapor-Liquid Equilibria of 1-Alkyl-1-Methylpyrrolidinium Bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide Ionic Liquids and CO2“, has been featured in the Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data.

-Published on: 1/1/2020

Congratulations, Tugba!

Tugba Turnaoglu successfully defended her Ph.D. Thesis entitled “Phase Behavior of Binary Ionic Liquid Systems: Ionic Liquids with Ammonia, Carbon Dioxide, and Dihydroxy Alcohols” and received Honors from her committee. Congratulations, Dr. Tugba Turnaoglu!

-Published on: 12/11/2019

Congratulations, Nick!

Nick Reding, a Graduate student in the Shiflett Research group, successfully defended his Masters thesis in Chemical Engineering on November 25th, 2019. His thesis is entitled “Mitigation of Metal Dust Deflagrations via Thermal Analysis and Active Explosion Suppression”. Congratulations Nick!

-Published on: 12/1/2019

On the Cover!

Nick Reding’s recently published work, “Mitigation of Iron and Aluminum Powder Deflagrations via Active Explosion Suppression in 1 m3 Sphere Vessel“, has recently been featured on a journal cover in Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research (IECR). Congratulations!

-Published on: 12/1/2019

Nice work, Ankit!

Ankit Verma, PhD Candidate in Shiflett Research Group, won the first place in the Graduate Student Poster Competition for his poster entitled “Role of Oxalates in Metal Separation and Recovery” at AIChE 2019 Sustainability and Sustainable Biorefineries Poster Session.

-Published on: 11/19/2019

Congratulations Ana!

Dr. Ana Rita Colaco Morais (center front row, blue shirt) completed her post-doctoral appointment in the Shiflett laboratory and has accepted a position at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado. Ana will be missed by her colleagues and students, and we wish her success in her new position.

-Published on: 9/27/2019

May 2019 Commencement

Foundation Distinguished Professor of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering Mark Shiflett, right, and Tugba Turnaoglu, doctoral graduate advised by Dr. Shiflett, prepare to walk down the Hill at KU’s May 2019 Commencement. KU School of Engineering set a record for doctorates awarded in the past academic year.

Link to article.

-Published on: 9/7/2019

Congratulations Nick!

A paper by Nick Redding, graduate student in the Shiflett Research Group, recently got accepted in I&EC Research. His paper is entitled “Mitigation of Iron and Aluminum Powder Deflagrations via Active Explosion Suppression in 1 m3 Sphere Vessel“.

-Published on: 8/31/2019

Congratulations Ankit!


Ankit Verma, PhD candidate in the Shiflett Research Group, published his 1st first-authored paper, entitled “Metal Recovery Using Oxalate Chemistry: A Technical Review” in I&EC Research, July 31,2019.

-Published on: 8/21/2019

Prof. Shiflett celebrates his 53rd birthday with his research team! Happy Birthday, Dr. Shiflett!

-Published on: 7/24/2019

Allgeier-Shiflett groups enjoy annual picnic together

-Published on: 7/14/2019


The Shiflett group shared another great time together supporting the local soccer team Sporting KC against Los Angeles FC.

-Published on: 7/14/2019

Congratulations Alejandra!

Recent research published by Alejandra Rocha and Dr. Shiflett has been featured in Advances in Engineering. Their publication was based on research regarding in situ atmospheric water vapor absorption and desorption in three imidazolium-based ionic liquids, over a given range of temperatures and relative humidity conditions.

-Published on: 5/9/2019

Congratulations Dr. David Minnick!

Congratulations to Dr. David Minnick who accepted a new position at DuPont!  Dave will be a Research Investigator and located at the Washington Works site in Parkersburg, West Virginia.  Dave previous worked for Battelle and was a post-doctoral investigator in the Shiflett group from 2016-2018.  Good luck Dave in your new career at DuPont!

-Published on: 5/9/2019

Congratulations Recently Published Researchers!

Congratulations to Dr. Minnick, Dr. Kore, and Dr. Morais for the recent publication of their research! Dr. Kore and Dr. Morais are both post-doctoral researchers with Shiflett Research Group, and Dr. Minnick previously attended KU for his graduate studies and worked in Shiflett Research Group as a post-doctoral researcher. He now works as a principal research scientist with Battelle. Read more about their research at the links below.

Minnick, D.L., Kore, R.R., Lyon, C.J., Subramanian, B., Shiflett, M.B., Scurto, A.M., Understanding Sulfur Content in Alkylate from Sulfuric Acid-Catalyzed C3/C4 Alkylations, Energy Fuels2019,

Morais, A. C. R., Alaras, L.M., Baek, D.L., Fox, R.V., Shiflett, M.B., Scurto, A.m., Viscosity of 1-Alkyl-1-methylpyrrolidinium Bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide Ionic Liquids Saturated with Compressed CO2, J. Chem. Eng. Data2019,

-Published on: 4/29/2019

Congratulations Ankit Verma & Nick Redding!

Ankit Verma and Nick Redding, both graduate students in Shiflett Research Group, were recently selected for the 2019 Outstanding Graduate Student Academic Achievement Award. They will receive their awards at the annual engineering awards banquet on Saturday, May 4. Both Ankit and Nick have a 4.0 GPA in their graduate studies at KU.

-Published on: 4/24/2019

Shiflett Research Group Publishes Research

Congratulations to Tugba Turnaoglu and Ana Morais for their recent publication in the Journal of Chemical and Engineering Data. This journal article features new research and data regarding high-pressure vaporliquid equilibrium for the binary systems of carbon dioxide (CO2) and a series of 1-alkyl-1-methylpyrrolidinium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide ionic liquids. Experiments were conducted using gravimetric (IGA and XEMIS microbalances) and volumetric (high pressure view cell) methods. Read more about their research in the Journal of Chemical and Engineering Data here.

-Published on: 4/24/2019

Congratulations to our recently published researchers!

Congratulations to Tugba Turnaoglu, Nick Reding, Alejandra Rocha, and Raj Kore for their recent publications! In just a short 3 months, Shiflett Research Group has featured their research in five publications in various journals. Read more about their work in their respective research fields at the links below.

Broderick, M., Rocha, M.A., Khalifa, Y., Shiflett, M.B., Newberg, J.T., Mass Transfer Thermodynamics through a Gas-Liquid Interface, Journal of Physical Chemistry, 2019,

Reding, N.S., Shiflett, M.B., Characterization of Thermal Stability and Heat Absorption for Suppressant Agent/Combustible Dust Mixtures via Thermogravimetric Analysis/Differential Scanning Calorimetry, Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research,

Kore, R., Day, V., Shiflett, M.B., Structural Identification for the Reaction of Chlorosulfonic Acid with Tertiary N-Donor Ligand — Ionic Liquid or Zwitterionic Compound?, ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering2019,

Turnaoglu, T., Shiflett, M.B., The First Thermodynamic and Kinetic Analysis of Ammonia in Imidazolium Based Ionic Liquids using a Gravimetric Microbalance, Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, 2019,

Rocha, M.A., Shiflett, M.B., Water Sorption and Diffusivity in [C2C1im][BF4], [C4C1im][OAc], and [C4C1im][Cl], Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, 2019,

Congratulations to our researchers for recognition of their hard work!

-Published on: 3/30/19

Shiflett Research Group featured in KU News

A $1 million gift from University of Kansas alumni Richard and Elizabeth Hoover of Northport, Michigan, will establish a chemical engineering research lab at KU’s School of Engineering.

Mark Shiflett, Foundation Distinguished Professor in the Department of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering at KU, said being able to build laboratories such as the one supported by the Hoovers resonates with businesses that visit KU.

“Multibillion-dollar companies see these facilities, and they are really impressed. Companies such as DuPont and Chemours could go anywhere in the world to do research, and they come right here, to Kansas, working with us, and that offers tremendous opportunities to students,” Shiflett said. “And when projects we’ve worked on together are completed, these companies hire our students.”

This story has been featured in both KU News and the Lawrence Journal World. Read the full story by Michelle Tevis in the KU News here.

-Published on: 1/27/19

Dr. Shiflett featured as University of Delaware’s

Alumni spotlight

Congratulations to Dr. Shiflett for being featured as the alumni spotlight for the College of Engineering at the University of Delaware. Dr. Shiflett began his work with UD in 2011 as an adjunct professor in chemical engineering before coming to KU in 2016. See the full story here.

-Published on: 12/25/18

Congratulations to Dr. Shiflett!

Dr. Shiflett was recently elected as a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors! Join us in congratulating him for such a great honor. Read the full story here.

-Published on: 12/17/18

Congratulations to Alejandra!

We would like to extend our warmest congratulations to Alejandra Rocha for successfully defending her Master’s thesis. Her presentation on December 10th was entitled “Phase Equilibria of Imidazolium-Based Ionic Liquids and Water.” We are so proud of all her hard work throughout her time working with the Shiflett Research Group!

-Published on: 12/12/18

Jayhawks at AIChE 2018

The KU reception was a hit! Thanks to all of you who could attend, can’t wait to see you again next year! Be sure to find more pictures of us in the Gallery page of our website!

-Published on: 10/30/18

See you in Pittsburgh!

The Shiflett team is excited to be attending the 2018 AIChE conference next week (see our talks below)! KU will also be hosting a reception Sunday Oct 28th at the Westin Convention Center – Westmoreland Central Room from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm. Don’t forget to stop by!

Monday, October 29
1- Michael Shao, Mark B. Shiflett and Alejandra Rocha
Abstract Title: 106g Aspen Plus® Videos for Chemical Engineering Undergraduates
Time: 09:48-10:06 AM
Location: David L. Lawrence Convention Center-408

2-Nicholas Reding and Mark B. Shiflett
Abstract Title:189bl Characterization of Heat Absorption and Decomposition Products for Suppressant Agent/Combustible Dust Mixtures Via TGA/DSC/MS Analysis
Time: 03:30 PM – 05:00 PM
Location:David L. Lawrence Convention Center- Exhibit Hall B

3- David M. Griffin and Mark B. Shiflett
Abstract Title: 221e Integrating Laboratory Experiments into Chemical Engineering Core Courses
Time: 04:38 PM – 04:55 PM
Location:David L. Lawrence Convention Center- 411

Wednesday, October 31, 2018
4- Tugba Turnaoglu and Mark B. Shiflett
Abstract Title: 462g Solubility and Diffusivity of Ammonia in Aprotic and Protic Ionic Liquids
Time: 09:30 AM – 09:45 AM
Location:David L. Lawrence Convention Center- 316

Friday, November 02, 2018
5- M. Alejandra Rocha, S, Yong Zhang, Edward J. Maginn and Mark B. Shiflett
Abstract Title: 742a Liquid-Liquid Phase Separation of Ionic Liquids By Water Addition (Experiment and Simulation)
Time: 08:00 AM – 08:19 AM
Location:David L. Lawrence Convention Center- 306
-Published on: 10/26/18

Te Vejo em Breve Lisboa! (See you soon Lisbon!)

Dr. Shiflett will be giving a plenary lecture at EuCheMSIL in October at Lisbon, Portugal. If you will be attending, be sure to stop by and say hi! More info here.
-Published on: 9/17/18


The Shiflett group shared a great time together supporting the local soccer team Sporting KC against Orlando City. And yes … of course SKC won!!

SKC Game

-Published on: 9/9/18

Upcoming Publications

Be on the lookout for papers from our group in press soon!

Nick Reding and Dr. Shiflett ‘s paper: Metal Dust Explosion Hazards: A Technical Review was accepted into the Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research Journal.

Dr. Minnick, Alejandra Rocha, Tugba Turnaoglu, and Dr. Shiflett ‘s paper: Gas and Vapor Sorption Measurements using Electronic Beam Balances was accepted as a featured article in the Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A.

-Published on: 8/11/18

Ringing Bells!

The KU-rooted pharmaceutical company Savara went public on NASDAQ May of 2017, and last month had the great opportunity to ring the market bell in NYC on July 23rd. Our own research associate, Dr. Cory Berkland (profile), was actually part of the creation of Savara, which he started out of his lab in 2007 to develop aerosolized drug therapies. Read more here!

Picture source from business Nasdaq:

-Published on: 8/11/18

Congrats to Ana and the Vaccine Team!

Ana C Morais was recently awarded the 2018 Baxter Young Investigator award for her work on the vaccine project. Rock Chalk! Follow this link for more info on the advancements the Shiflett group is making on the thermal stabilization of vaccines.

-Published on: 8/1/18

Summer Research!

For many of our undergrads summer and research go hand in hand, and several of them had the opportunity to present their work at the KU 2018 Summer Poster session. See their pictures below 🙂 !

-Published on: 7/27/18

Fire Training

This summer, Simon Velasquez, one of Dr. Allgeier grad students, set up an instructive hands-on activity for our high school intern: fire extinguisher safety! Thanks Simon!

-Published on: 7/16/18

It’s Summer!

The Shiflett Research group and Allgeier Research group enjoyed a fun summer cookout at Clinton Lake and showed off their impressive sand volleyball skills! More pictures in our Gallery page!

-Published on: 7/15/18

Up with Teaching, Down with CO2

Dr. Mark Shiflett is working to elevate the research and educational opportunities of KU’s new Central Utility Plant (CUP), which produces hot and chilled water for KU’s Central District, while reducing KU’s carbon footprint and creating stronger ties with industry. Read more  here!
-Published on: 7/03/18

“Boulder” Jayhawks!

Tugba, Alejandra, and Dr. Shiflett gave great talks and poster presentations at the 20th Symposium of Thermophysical Properties at the University of Colorado Boulder! See the list below!

Tugba Turnaoglu
Oral Presentation: A Kinetic and Thermodynamic Analysis of Ammonia in Ionic Liquids
Poster: Liquid-Liquid Equilibria of 1,5-Pentanediol in Room Temperature Ionic Liquids

Alejandra Rocha
Oral Presentation: Vapor-Liquid-Liquid Equilibria of Ternary Imidazolium-based Ionic Liquids and Water Systems
Poster:  Water Sorption in Ionic Liquids Characterized using a Dynamic Vapor Sorption Analyzer (IGAsorp) and Ambient Pressure X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (APXPS)

Dr. Mark Shiflett
Oral Presentation: Investigating the Role of Atom Substitution on the Hydrogen Bonding Interactions and Solubility of Hydrofluorocarbons in Ionic Liquids

Bonus picture!

Tugba, Mark, and Alejandra hiking on the Red Rocks Trail

-Published on: 6/28/18

Welcome to Our 3 New Post Doctoral Researchers!

Dr. Ana Morais, Dr. Rajkumar Kore, and Dr. Sachin Nandanwar have joined the group beginning this summer. We give them a warm welcome and look forward to celebrating their future accomplishments with the team! Learn more about our new members here.

-Published on: 6/07/18

Congrats to the Happy Couples!

May has been full of big dates with several of our undergrads graduating, Bill and Dave saying bye to the team, welcoming new post-docs, and people getting married!

Bill and Tara celebrated their marriage on Saturday May 12th in Lawrence, KS and we wish them the best on this wonderful journey together!

Alejandra and Jason also tied the knot in Lawrence on Friday May 18th; we wish them a lifetime of love and happiness!

-Published on: 6/07/18

Bidding Farewell to Dave and Bill

Dr. Dave Minnick and Dr. Bill Gilbert will be departing the lab group and starting their new jobs in industry within the coming weeks. We will miss them greatly, but we wish them the best on their new careers!

Thank you for your dedicated work! Mark gifted Bill and Dave some neat glass trophies at one of our weekly group breakfasts. (left to right: Bill, Mark, Dave)

Golf Voyage for Dave and Bill! (left to right: Alejandra, Tugba, Kyle, Bill, Dave, Mark)

-Published on: 5/10/18

Thank you!

Our sponsor network continues to expand, and we are honored to have their support! Our list can be found on our Sponsors tab. Feel free to check them out!

-Published on: 4/7/18

Congratulations to Tugba on her Award!

Tugba Turnaoglu, along other KU CPE researchers, attended the 2018 Capitol Graduate Research Summit which was held at the State Capitol, Topeka, on the 27th of March, 2018. She received the BioKansas Presentation Award at the Summit. Yay, Tugba!! For more info please see here.

-Published on: 3/30/18

Rock Chalk, Tugba!

Great news keep coming for our team! Tugba Turnaoglu passed her comprehensive exam today! Her topic was “Protic Ionic Liquid-Zeolite Composites for Ammonia Separation in the Haber-Bosch Process.” Congratulations, Tugba!!

-Published on: 3/26/18

Congratulations to Katie!

Katie Bauguess has accepted a full time position with ExxonMobil. She will be working as a contact engineering in their Baton Rouge, LA site beginning August, 2018.

-Published on: 2/28/18

Congrats Dave!

Dr. David Minnick recently accepted a principal research scientist position with Battelle.  Dave will begin working at the Battelle Eastern Science and Technology Center located in Aberdeen, MD starting in June, 2018.

-Published on: 2/8/18

Congrats Bill!

Congratulations to Dr. Bill Gilbert who accepted an offer of employment from the Chemours Chemical Company. Bill will be working at the Chemours TiO2 facility in New Johnsonville, Tennessee. He will start in June 2018.

-Published on: 12/2/17

Wine Science

Shiflett lab is on the news again! Check out the KU article featuring undergraduate Maddie Lyda, Dr. Bill Gilbert, and Dr. Mark Shiflett on researching sulfite removal from wine. Our group hopes to develop and market an inexpensive device which can remove 99% of sulfites from wine.

Maddie Lyda samples wine using a total sulfur analyzer. Photo courtesy of KU.

-Published on: 11/29/17

Part of a Great Network

Dr. Mark Shiflett recently completed a news story on ionic liquid solubilities with AZO Network,a system focused on “Telling science, technology and medical stories to people who can make a difference.” In the piece, Dr. Shiflett discusses the different applications of ionic liquids and describes the importance in measuring gas solubilities.

Check it out here!
-Published on: 11/25/17

AIChE Annual Conference Successes!

Our group is very grateful to have presented at the 2017 AIChE Annual Conference. We had over 8 talks and posters representing the Shiflett group. Congrats to Brooks Danahy for earning an award on his poster at the undergraduate session!

And, the AIChE hospitality suite was a success! We look forward to seeing you again next year!

-Published on: 11/12/17

KU Chemical & Petroleum Engineering Hospitality Suite

Will you be at the annual AIChE conference in Minneapolis this year? Join us at our hospitality suite and learn about our novel research and cutting-edge facilities!

When: 7:30PM-9:30PM on Sunday, October 29th
Where: Duluth Room, Hilton Minneapolis, 3rd floor near escalators

We look forward to meeting you!

-Published on: 10/05/17

On the Cover!

The book Ionic liquids: Current State and Future Directions edited by Dr. Scurto and Dr. Shiflett, was published recently. And of course, the book (bottom left image) displayed their KU pride with crimson and blue on the cover! In addition, Dr. Shiflett wrote a perspective article in the November issue of the AIChE Journal, and it is featured on the cover (bottom right image).

-Published on: 9/26/17

Presence Abroad!

Dr. Mark Shiflett was invited to present a keynote lecture at the European Conference on Thermophysical Properties in Graz, Austria. He recently traveled to Graz, and presented his a talk “Ionic Liquids – Phase Behavior to Applications” on the morning of Tuesday September 5th.

Later that week, Dr. Shiflett also had the opportunity to visit the Hiden Isochema Ltd. headquarters in Warrington, UK to celebrate 15 years of successful collaboration. Dr. Mark Roper, Director of Sales and Marketing at Hiden, met with Dr. Shiflett and provided a tour of Hiden’s advanced instrumentation.

-Published on: 09/16/17

Future Conferences

We are excited to have our graduate students and postdoctoral researchers presenting at two upcoming conferences. Tugba, Alejandra, Bill, and Dave will be presenting posters at the upcoming 2017 ACS Midwest Regional Meeting – Catalysis Symposium at KU on October 19th, and oral presentations at the 2017 AIChE Annual Meeting in Minneapolis on October 29th – November 2nd. Be sure to stop by if you are attending the conferences!

Details below:

2017 ACS Midwest Regional Meeting
Tugba Turnaoglu:
Vapor-Liquid Equilibria:Ammonia and 1-hexyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide
Friday October 20th, 12:30PM-2:30PM

Alejandra Rocha:
Clathrate Hydrate Formation Using Fluorocarbons
Friday October 20th, 12:30PM-2:30PM

Bill Gilbert:
Safety Considerations when Designing a New Chemical Engineering Research Laboratory
Friday October 20th, 8:00AM-10:00AM

Dave Minnick:
Solubility of vinyl fluoride in aqueous lithium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide solutions
Friday October 20th, 12:30PM-2:30PM

2017 AIChE Annual Meeting (at the Minneapolis Convention Center)
Tugba Turnaoglu:
-Ammonia Absorption in Ionic Liquids
Wednesday November 1st, 9:42 AM – 9:59 AM, Room 103B

Alejandra Rocha:
-Clathrate Hydrate Formation Using Fluorocarbons
Tuesday October 31st, 8:51 AM – 9:08 AM, Room L100I
-Water Sorption in Ionic Liquids Characterized Using a Dynamic Vapor Sorption Analyzer (IGASorp) and High Pressure X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (APXPS)
Thursday, November 2nd, 4:00 PM – 04:15 PM, Room M100B

Bill Gilbert:
-Safety Considerations When Designing a New Chemical Engineering Research Laboratory
Monday October 30th, 1:42 PM – 2:00 PM, Room 205C
-Desorption of Gases from Ionic Liquids Using an Applied Electric Field
Tuesday October 31st, 12:30 PM – 12:52 PM, Room 101C

Dave Minnick:
-Measurement and Modeling of Vinyl Fluoride Solubility in Aqueous Lithium Bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)Imide Solutions
Monday October 30th, 12:50 PM – 01:10 PM, Room M100C
-Phase Behavior of Compressed Gases in Ionic Liquids at the Liquid-Solid Transition Point
Tuesday October 31st, 04:12 PM – 04:31 PM, Room L100J

Shiflett Lab Group Hosts Open House

Shiflett lab group hosted an open lab afternoon on April 28. The event featured undergraduate research presentations on their different projects from this semester. Dr. Shiflett and our post doctorate researchers also gave visitors tours of the lab space.

New Kinetics Experiment for Undergraduate Chemical Engineering Laboratory

Dr. David Griffin, Dr. Bill Gilbert and Prof. Mark B. Shiflett
Figure 1 – New Kinetics Experiment – Iodination of Acetone – C&PE 616 Chemical Engineering Lab I

A new kinetics experiment was completed and added to the undergraduate chemical engineering teaching laboratory for the Chemical Engineering Laboratory I, C&PE 616.  Students can measure the kinetic orders and activation energy for the iodination of acetone reaction (CH3COCH3  + I2 → CH3COCH2I +  HI) using HCl as a catalyst.

The reaction is a color change reaction so it starts as a colored solution when iodine is added (I2 is red/brown in color) and goes clear as the product iodoacetone is formed (iodoacetone is clear). The experimental setup consists of a 1 liter stirred tank reactor with a cooling/heating jacket controlled with a Peltier temperature bath.  A pump circulates a sample of the reactor fluid through a flow cell in a spectrometer for instantaneous analysis of the iodine concentration as a function of time.  The temperature and absorbance are recorded using a LabView® data acquisition program on a laptop computer.  The waste can be drained to waste containers beneath the reactor and the system is mounted on a moveable rack which allows the experiment to be portable.  The setup is identical on both sides of the rack so that students can work in groups of two to run both reactors simultaneously.  The spectrometer measures the absorbance of iodine at a wavelength of 510 nm.  Students use both a linear regression (Initial Rates Method) and a non-linear regression to analyze the kinetics data to determine the orders of reaction and the activation energy.  In addition to the experiments, students model the reaction using Aspen Plus using both batch (RBATCH) and continuous (RCSTR) reactor models. The fact that the experiment is portable allows the equipment to be wheeled into the classroom for demonstration during lectures.  Students taking Chemical Kinetics C&PE 524 will learn how the experiment works, the methods for data analysis and be assigned a homework set based on actually experimental data being measured by the Senior class.  This will connect the lab course with the kinetics course and familiarize the Juniors in C&PE 524 with the kinetics experiment they will do the following semester in the undergraduate laboratory course C&PE 616.  In addition, future experiments can be conducted with other reactants such as bromine and the effect of different catalysts can be studied.

A new thermodynamics experiment is planned for construction during the summer of 2017 and ready for use in C&PE 616 by the Fall semester.  The intent is by the Fall of 2018, that three new experiments focused on kinetics (complete), thermodynamics and fluid mechanics will be ready which connect the theory taught in the core courses with the laboratory course.  The experiments will be portable and allow instructors to describe the experiments in the classroom and build homework sets based on data measured by students to familiarize Juniors with the Senior laboratory equipment and analysis methods.

-Published on: 03/03/17

KU School of Engineering

Mark B. Shiflett is a Distinguished Foundation Professor in the School of Engineering at the University of Kansas. Professor Shiflett has a joint appointment in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering and the Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis. Professor Shiflett recently joined the University of Kansas as the final Foundation Professor in August 2016.

The Shiflett Research Group is sponsored and housed within the University of Kansas School of Engineering within the department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering.

About Us

Our mission is to educate students how to invent new products and develop new processes which are energy-efficient, sustainable, economical and safe for humans and the environment.


Novel Processes

Our group has the expertise and the equipment to perform a variety of separations and reaction chemistries.  We have a state-of-the-art gravimetric microbalance laboratory which provides us with the unique capability to study the sorption and diffusion of gases and vapors into liquids and solids over a broad range of temperature (-196 °C to 1000 °C) and pressure (vacuum to 170 bar).  We have a pressure-swing adsorption system with 4 beds which can operate at pressures up to 70 bar.  We have a suite of analytical equipment including gas and ion chromatographs, liquid chromatographs and mass spectrometers which can be combined with batch, semi-batch and continuous flow reactors for studying a variety of chemistries.  We have membrane modules for measuring pure gas permeance and the selectivity of mixed gas systems.


Advanced Materials

Our laboratory specializes in the synthesis, characterization and application of advanced materials.  We have an extensive library of over 3000 materials composed of zeolites, ionic liquids, carbons and ion-exchange resins.  These materials are being evaluated for a variety of applications including gas and liquid separations, catalysis, desalination and water purification, interactions with biological systems and extraction of biobased chemicals from renewable feedstocks.   Our goal is to develop new materials with unique properties which can solve relevant problems for our society.

Industrial Research

We actively seek out and partner with chemical companies to develop new commercial products and processes.   Companies can sponsor proprietary projects and take advantage of KU’s world-class research facilities.  We offer a variety of project options.  Discovery projects are short-term (3 to 6 month) proof-of-concept programs.  Innovation projects are typically a year to multi-year programs which involve graduate students and post-graduate researchers.  We offer a service laboratory which is available for sample analysis.  Companies can save time and money by contracting measurements and projects with our laboratory.  We understand that Intellectual Property (IP) issues are often a barrier to industry-academia collaborations; therefore, we work with the University of Kansas Innovation and Collaboration team to create unique IP arrangements that benefit both the sponsor and KU.  If you are interested in sponsoring a project or contract testing services, please contact Dr. Mark B. Shiflett.