News & Events

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.

-Updated 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

Alejandra Rocha:
Clathrate Hydrate Formation Using Fluorocarbons

Bill Gilbert:
Safety Considerations when Designing a New Chemical Engineering Research Laboratory

Dave Minnick:
Solubility of vinyl fluoride in aqueous lithium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide solutions

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

A new kinetics experiment shown in Figure 1 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.