Recent Accomplishments

2020

  • Our joint paper with Gonghu Li at UNH on anchored molecular complexes for CO2 reduction is published in ChemPhotoChem here. 2/20
  • I’m serving as the chemical engineering department’s graduate chair this year, and we had a very successful PhD recruiting weekend. 2/20
  • Gave a guest lecture on analyzing data and designing experiments for WPI’s Responsible Conduct of Research course. 2/20
  • WPI held its annual Graduate Research Innovation Exchange, our poster competition/showcase. I was lead judge for the “Chemical Engineering & Materials Science” section. 2/20
  • We hosted the winter New England Catalysis Society meeting at WPI. This year I’m serving as vice-chair of the society. 1/20

2019

  • I had the wonderful opportunity to give an invited talk at the “Polarons in the 21st Century” workshop help at the Erwin Schrödinger Institute in Vienna, Austria. Cool to be at a place where so many developments in modern physics occurred. 12/19ESI-polaron
  • Gave a talk at the University of New Hampshire. Great institution! 12/19
  • Lida’s paper on surface segregation of bimetallic alloys is published. 10/19
  • Finished teaching a graduate course CHE 554: Molecular Modeling. 10/19
  • Finished teaching CHE 2011: Chemical Engineering Fundamentals to our sophomores. 10/19
  • The Prague, Czech Republic Project Center website is live! 9/19
  • Our paper on the stability of supported metal atoms/clusters is published in The Journal of Chemical Physics as part of the special topics “Catalytic Properties of Model Supported Nanoparticles” and is also an Editor’s Pick. 8/19
  • So excited to have Tyler and Brad here this last summer as REU students to do some great research. 8/19
  • Gave a talk at the 2019 North American Catalysis Society Meeting in Chicago. 6/19
  • Organized the second New England Energy Research Forum at WPI. Lots of talks and posters from some great energy researchers in the area. 6/19
  • A major milestone. My 50th journal article is accepted for publication in the Journal of the American Chemical Society! Great to work with Prof. Xiaowei Teng. 6/19
  • I had a wonderful visit to Prague, looking for student housing. Excited to start a project center as part of WPI’s global program. 6/19Prague 2019
  • Congratulations to Lida for a great PhD defense on ethanol oxidation catalysts! 5/19Celebration
  • Gave a talk at the New England Catalysis Society meeting at Brown University on our work on stability of atomically dispersed catalysts. 5/19
  • The NSF funds a proposal with Drs. Lyuba Titova and Kathy Chen to start an REU center at WPI: “REU Site: Developing a Clean Energy Future with Underserved Students” . 4/19
  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised: “Efficient Strategies for Modeling Polarons using Density Functional Theory”. Nice job Thang – good luck at graduate school! 4/19
  • Gave a talk at Brown University on our work involving atomically dispersed catalysts. 4/19
  • Congratulations to Oskar who finished his thesis research here at WPI modeling CO2 photoreduction, and is heading back to RWTH Aachen University in Germany to finish up writing his thesis. 4/19Oskar-lunch-farewell
  • Finished teaching an advanced statistics course at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center. 3/19
  • Lida participated in WPI’s yearly graduate poster contest, the Graduate Research Innovation Exchange (GRIE), and advanced to the finals. Congratulations Lida! 2/19
  • Gave a guest lecture on research analysis and design for WPI’s Responsible Conduct of Research course. 1/19

2018

  • Finished duties as a faculty advisor for WPI’s Insight program. 12/18
  • Finished teaching a basic statistics course at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center. 12/18
  • Finished teaching CHE 580: Research Analysis and Design, a graduate course to teach students to better analyze their data and perform better experiments. 12/18IMG_20181212_142310459_HDR
  • Gave a talk at Tufts University, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. 12/18
  • Our paper examining trends of adsorbed single metal atoms supported on TiO2 is published. 10/18
  • Finished teaching CHE 2011: Chemical Engineering Fundamentals. 10/18
  • Thang Pham, an undergraduate in our research group, won the “Best Presentation Computation and Theory” presentation at the Gulf Coast Undergraduate Research Symposium at Rice University. Congratulations Thang! 10/18thang-award2
  • Our paper with Gonghu Li at UNH and Ron Grimm at WPI on photoreduction of CO2 using supported metal atoms and oxygen defects is published in ACS Catalysis. 10/18
  • Gave a presentation to the WPI graduate student population on navigating the publishing process as part of WPI’s Research Communication Series. 10/18
  • Presented work on metal atoms over TiO2 at the National ACS meeting in Boston. 8/18
  • Attended the Gordon Conference on Catalysis and shared work on metals/TiO2. 6/18
  • Satish Iyemperumal finished his PhD and moved to MIT for a post-doctoral position. 6/18
  • Junbo Chen completed his MS degree. 6/18
  • Mentored two REU students, Erin and Samer. 5/18-8/18.
  • Hosted the spring meeting of the New England Catalysis Society at WPI. 5/18
  • Junbo Chen wins 2nd Place in the “Chemical Engineering and Materials Science” division at WPI’s yearly graduate poster contest, the Graduate Research Innovation Exchange (GRIE). 4/18

Satish-Junbo-Deskins-GRIE2018-small

  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised with Pratap Rao of the Mechanical Engineering department : “Experimental and Theoretical Optimization of BiI3 Selective-Contact Solar Cell Materials”. 4/18
  • WPI holds a Three-Minute Thesis competition and Lida wins first place! 3/18
  • I obtain a collaborative appointment with the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at WPI. 3/18
  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised: “A Study of Potential Organometallic Photosensitizers for TiO2 Using Density Functional Theory”. 3/18
  • Interactive Qualifying Project (junior-level project equivalent to three courses) advised with Amy Peterson: “Advancing Chemistry Education with 3D Printed Tools”. 3/18
  • A proposal is successful with XSEDE for computational hours at national supercomputing facilities. 3/18
  • A paper is accepted in the Journal of Physical Chemistry C on modeling geopolymer formation. 3/18
  • Gave a campus-wide talk to graduate students on data analysis and collection through the Student Training and Readiness Series (STARS) program. 1/18

2017

  • A proposal for computational time submitted to Argonne National Laboratory’s Center for Nanoscale Materials is awarded. 12/17
  • Finished teaching an undergraduate course I developed, CHE 3702: Energy Challenges in the 21st Century. 12/17
  • Hosted the fall meeting of the New England Catalysis Society at WPI. There was a great turn out and lots of quality work! 12/17
  • Gave a campus-wide talk to graduate students on the peer-review process. 12/17
  • Gave a talk in WPI’s mechanical engineering department. 11/17
  • Co-chaired several sessions at the American Institute of Chemical Engineers meeting in Minneapolis. 11/17
  • Satish and Lida gave great presentations at the national American Institute of Chemical Engineers meeting in Minneapolis. 11/17
  • Finished teaching CHE 554: Molecular Modeling. 10/17
  • Finished teaching CHE 2011: Chemical Engineering Fundamentals. 10/17
  • Gave a talk in WPI’s chemistry department. 10/17
  • Satish’s work on CO2 activation by Cu clusters is accepted in Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. 10/17
  • We have a paper on Bi2S3 accepted in Sustainable Energy & Fuels. In collaboration with Prof. Rao in WPI’s mechanical engineering department. 9/17
  • A paper in collaboration with Prof. Mike Timko is accepted in Carbon. 9/17
  • The NSF funds work with Prof. Rao to study sulfur-based materials for photocatalysis, as detailed here. 8/17
  • Satish and Lida both gave great talks at the national ACS meeting in D.C. on their work. Satish on modeling solvation effects and Cu/TiO2 catalysts for CO2 reduction. Lida on modeling alloys. 8/17
  • We published a paper with Prof. Teng at the University of New Hampshire in the Journal of Catalysis. 8/17
  • An inside cover image is published with our paper on solvent effects in ChemPhysChem. 8/17
  • The NSF funds work in collaboration with Prof. Teng at the University of New Hampshire to study ethanol oxidation catalysis. 7/17
  • Our paper on reduced amorphous titania was accepted in Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. 7/17
  • Satish and I attended the Gordon Research Conference on “Clusters & Nanostructures” at Mount Holyoke College. 7/17
  • Organized the 1st New England Energy Research Forum -“Materials and Processes for Clean Energy” held at WPI. Around 95 people attended from schools in the New England area. We had 24 oral presentations and 38 posters – a great success! This conference was highlighted in a WPI  news release. 6/17
  • Elected Secretary of the New England Catalysis Society. 5/17
  • Satish’s paper “Evaluating Solvent Effects at the Aqueous/Pt (111) Interface” was accepted for publication in ChemPhysChem. 5/17
  • Taught a new graduate course that I designed,  CHE 580: Research Analysis, Design, and Ethics. 3/17 to 5/17
  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised: “A Density Functional Theory Study of the Structure and Chemistry of Zeolite Linde Type A (LTA)”. 5/17
  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised: “Tailored Annealing and Surface Treatment of Bi2S3 Thin Film to Enhance Optoelectronic Performance”. 5/17
  • Major Qualifying Project (senior thesis) advised: “Molecular Interactions between Simple Sugars and Styrene Derivatives: Identifying Favorable Binding Agents for Bifunctional Solid Acid Catalysts”. 5/17
  • Zhehao Zhu won 1st Place on Project Presentation Day in Chemistry, 2nd Place on Project Presentation Day in Chemical Engineering, and the Salisbury Prize in the Chemistry & Biochemistry department for his work on Bi2S3. 4/17
  • Served as lead judge in the engineering division for WPI’s yearly graduate poster contest, the Graduate Research Innovation Exchange (GRIE). 2/17 to 4/17
  • Satish Kumar Iymperumal, my graduate student, won the Ph.D. award in the chemical engineering department from the New England Institute of Chemists (NEIC). 4/17
  • Attended an NSF workshop on big data in chemistry. 4/17
  • Became a full member of Sigma Xi. 4/17
  • Gave an invited talk at the “Workshop on Charge Trapping Defects in Semiconductors and Insulators” in York, UK (beautiful city!). 3/17
  • Successful proposal with XSEDE for computational hours at national supercomputing facilities. 3/17
  • Elected to WPI’s campus-wide tenure committe, the Committee on Tenure and Academic Freedom (CTAF). 2/17
  • Gave a campus-wide talk to graduate students  as part of the seminar series Student Training and Readiness Sessions (STARS) on academic publishing. 1/17

2016

  • Publications in 2016:
    • “Photocatalytic CO2 reduction by highly dispersed Cu sites on TiO2“, Liu C, Iyemperumal SK, Deskins NA, Li G, J. Photon. Energy. 7(1), 012004, 2016. doi:10.1117/1.JPE.7.012004
    • “Non-directed aromatic C–H amination: catalytic and mechanistic studies enabled by Pd catalyst and reagent design”, Bandara HMD, Jin D, Mantell MA, Field KD, Wang A, Narayanan RP, Deskins NA and Emmert MH, Catalysis Science & Technology, 6, 5304, 2016 doi:10.1039/C6CY00457A
    • “Local Interfacial Structure Influences Charge Localization in Titania Composites: Beyond the Band Alignment Paradigm”, Nolan M, Deskins NA, Schwartzenberg K, Gray K, The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 120, 1808, 2016 doi:10.1021/acs.jpcc.5b12326
  • Reviewed in 2016 for Journal of Physical Chemistry, Applied Catalysis B, RSC Advances, Materials Science in Semiconductor Processing, the Department of Energy, the ACS Petroleum Research Fund, and the National Science Foundation.
  • Visited the University of Milano-Bicocca and Prof. Cristiana Di Valentin to give a talk on my research. 12/16
  • Spent 2 fabulous months in Venice, Italy advising 27 students part of the Venice Project Center, 10/16 to 12/16
  • Taught CHE 2011: Chemical Engineering Fundamentals. 8/16 to 10/16
  • Chaired a session and spoke at the Theory and Applications of Computational Chemistry conference in Seattle WA. 9/16
  • Helped organize WPI’s Chemical Engineering Graduate Organization (CEGO) and started serving as faculty advisor. 9/16
  • Starting serving on search committee for Manning Chair. 8/16
  • Attended a KEEN workshop to learn more about developing an engineering entrepreneurial mindset in students. 8/16
  • Lida Mehdizadegan, my graduate student, spent the summer with Prof. Yuge at the University of Tokyo as part of an NSF EAPSI grant to learn more about modeling alloys. 6/16 to 8/16
  • Spoke at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland WA. 6/16
  • Spoke at ACS Green Chemistry & Engineering Conference conference in Portland OR. 6/16
  • Elected to the campus-wide Committee on Graduate Studies and Research (CGSR). 5/16
  • Taught CHE 554: Molecular Modeling. 1/16 to 5/16
  • Satish Kumar Iymperumal, my graduate student, won 1st Place in the Engineering division at Graduate Research Innovation Exchange, WPI’s yearly graduate poster contest. 4/16
  • Taught a course I instituted at WPI, CHE 3702: Energy Challenges in the 21st Century. 1/16 to 3/16
  • Spoke at the annual spring American Chemical Society meeting in San Diego. 3/16
  • Organized the first graduate student recruiting weekend in the chemical engineering department. 2/16

2015

  • Became chair of the graduate committee in WPI’s Chemical Engineering department
  • Elected Vice Chair of WPI’s Energy Research Group.