Catalysis Club of Philadelphia Officers for the 2010 – 2011 Season

In accord with its bylaws, the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia held annual elections for officers during the April meeting. For the 2010-2011 year, the officers will be:

  • Dion Vlachos, Chair
  • Michael Smith, Past-Chair
  • Joe Fedeyko, Chair-Elect
  • Steve Harris, Treasurer
  • Bjorn Moden, Director
  • Elizabeth Ross-Medgaarden, Director
  • Wei Huang, Director

In addition, four other officers are appointed by the Chair of the club. For the 2010-11 season these are:

  • Parag Shah, Secretary
  • Open, Program Chair
  • Kevin Bakhmutsky, Arrangements Chair
  • Anne Gaffney, NACS Representative

2010 Spring Symposium Summary

The Spring CCP symposium was held at Villanova University on May 13, 2010. The symposium focused on energy and environmental issues and brought together a mix of academic and industrial perspectives. Topics discussed include energy needs and efficiency, renewable chemicals, biomass production, electrocatalysis, fuel cells, materials for renewables, and emission control.

The symposium was well attended with nearly 90 attendees. More details can be found at Thanks to all the presenters and attendees, Mike Smith for being an excellent local host, Alan Stottlemyer (meeting coordinator and ad hoc treasurer) and Marguerite Mahoney of UD for organizing registration and other meeting logistics.

Chuck Coe is the recipient of the 2010 Catalysis Club of Philadelphia Award

Dr. Chuck Coe

The catalysis club of Philadelphia is pleased to announce Dr. Chuck Coe as the recipient of the 2010 Catalysis Club of Philadelphia Award, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to adsorption science, catalysis, and applications of catalysts for organic syntheses.

Chuck joined the Chemical Additives division of Air Products and Chemicals after he obtained his PhD in inorganic chemistry from Carnegie Mellon University. While at Air Products, Chuck developed a commercial catalyst for accelerating the cure of polyester sheet molded plastics. This product is still being sold some 30 years later. Early in Chuck’s career, he transferred to the Corporate research group at the Company headquarters and developed an extensive expertise in molecular sieve science, allowing him to contribute to a number of important successful commercially improved products and process offerings. For many years, he teamed with project leaders across business units to enable the development of improved adsorbents and catalysts based on building structure/property relationships targeted initially at specific applications. He led the team that created improved adsorbents for the non-cryogenic production of oxygen and was a major contributor to improvements in carbon molecular sieves that allowed the production of high purity nitrogen. His greatest commercial success involved the modification of an adsorbent used to purify nitrogen trifluoride that is used in the production of integrated circuits.

Chuck was also instrumental in developing new analytical methods and instrumentation to obtain fundamental information on small experimental samples. In this area, his most notable accomplishment has been establishing an advanced high pressure microbalance system that operates up to 100 atm in the presence of up to 50 vol% steam that supports carbon dioxide capture, hydrogen production, and integrated fuel/energy processes. Chuck was also a key member of the DOE Center of Excellence on Carbon-centered Hydrogen Storage Materials and created a unique differential volumetric adsorption apparatus for measuring high pressure hydrogen isotherms on 50 mg samples, enabling the development of advanced hydrogen storage materials. Before retiring from Air Products, Chuck was named a strategic technologist for the Corporation and provided internal consultation for a broad range of materials characterization issues involving catalysts, adsorbents, and membranes. His accomplishments have led to 34 issued US patents, 29 peer-reviewed publications, and numerous invited lectures.

Since retiring, Chuck has joined the Chemical Engineering faculty at Villanova and is sharing his knowledge with the next generation of scientists.

Please join us in congratulating Chuck on receiving the 2010 Catalysis Club of Philadelphia award.

Elections for the 2010-11 Season Executive Committee

Elections for the 2010-11 Club Officers will be held on Thursday, April 22 during dinner. The candidates are:

Chair-Elect: Joe Fedeyko and Roger Grey
Treasurer: Istvan Halasz and Stephen Harris
Directors: Trapti Chaubey, Wei Huang, Bjorn Moden, Elizabeth Ross-Medgaarden and Parag Shah

Biographical sketches of the candidates


  • Joe Fedeyko – Joe is currently a Staff Scientist at Johnson Matthey Inc., Emission Control Technologies where he develops catalysts for the selective catalytic reduction of NOx. He graduated in 2001 from Lehigh University with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and in 2006 from the University of Delaware with a Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering under the advisement of Raul Lobo. He’s been a member of the Philadelphia Catalysis Club for the past 8 years serving as a program chair (2007) and a director (2008, 2009).
  • Roger Grey – Roger Grey is a Research Scientist at Lyondell Chemical Company, where he has been employed for almost thirty years, currently working in the field of oxidation catalysis. Prior to Lyondell, Grey worked at Allied Chemical for five years, mainly in the field of homogeneous catalysis. He received his Ph.D. in chemistry from Michigan State University in 1973 and was a post-doctoral research fellow at UCLA for two years. Grey has been an active member of the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia for many years. He has served as Program Chair, Director, Treasurer, and as Chair of the Club. He also served as a co-chair of the poster session program for the 2005 North American Catalysis Society Meeting.


  • Istvan Halasz – Istvan is a Principal Chemist at PQ Corporation with a Ph. D. from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. His diverse academic and industrial research background includes product and process development, materials characterization, heterogeneous catalysis, and solid state chemistry. He has edited one book and (co)authored 100 papers, 8 patents, and 63 conference presentations. Istvan has been an ACS and North American Catalysis Society member since 1990, and has held various board positions at CCP including chair.
  • Stephen Harris – Stephen Harris received a BS in chemistry from Muhlenberg College and a Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry from the University of Rochester. His interests are in process design and optimization using homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts and differential separation technologies. He has been Treasurer, Arrangements Chair, and Membership Director for the CCP.


  • Trapti Chaubey – Trapti Chaubey earned her M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology. During her Master’s she worked with Dr. Hamid Arastoopour on recycling waste rubber using Solid State Shear Extrusion process. She joined Air Liquide in 2004 and has worked on several diverse research topics including purification processes for semiconductor industry, syngas reforming and CO2 capture and mitigation techniques. At Air Liquide she has designed several complex experimental test benches and worked on multiple projects involving polymerization reaction studies.
  • Wei Huang – Wei Huang is a Research Scientist at Gas Production & Hydrogen Energy Applications Group, DELAWARE RESEARCH & TECHNOLOGY CENTER (DRTC) USA, Air Liquide. Wei obtained her Ph.D degree from Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Delaware. She was co-advised by Prof. Jingguang G. Chen and Prof. Raul F. Lobo. Her expertise is catalyst design and synthesis, characterization by various techniques and pilot plant design and construction. After graduate from UD, she joined Air Liquide in Oct. 2007 as a Research Scientist. Currently, she works on several projects related to H2 and CO production and energy application.
  • Bjorn Moden – Bjorn Moden is currently a Research Engineer at Zeolyst International at the PQ Corporation R&D center in Conshohocken, PA, where he is working on zeolite development for environmental applications. He received his Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering from University of California, Berkeley under the direction of Enrique Iglesia in 2006 and his undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm in 2000. Bjorn has been the Secretary of the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia since 2007.
  • Elizabeth Ross-Medgaarden – Elizabeth is a Research Engineer with LyondellBasell Industries working in the Process Technology R&D group. She joined LyondellBasell directly after receiving her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Lehigh University under the direction of Israel Wachs in September 2007 and Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Lafayette College in 2002. Elizabeth’s background includes heterogeneous catalysis synthesis and optimization, reaction and optical spectroscopy techniques, process reaction optimization and process design, development and scale-up of new technologies. Elizabeth has been a member of ACS and AIChE since 2000 and a member of the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia for the past 8 years and has served as a club Director since 2008.
  • Parag Shah – Parag is a Research Chemist at PQ Corporation and is involved in developing improved silica-based supports, new polyolefin catalysts and process/product development for emerging catalyst technologies. In 2008 he received his Ph.D. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from University of Pennsylvania under the guidance of Prof. Raymond J. Gorte. His thesis work focused on investigating the thermodynamic properties of metal-oxide catalysts. Parag earned his Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the Institute of Chemical Technology, University of Bombay (India), and subsequently did a Masters in Chemical Engineering at the University of Twente (The Netherlands), with emphasis on Process Development and Design. He has been a member of the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia since 2004.

Catalysis Club of Philadelphia: Winners of the Annual Student Poster Competition

The Catalysis Club of Philadelphia’s Annual Student Poster Competition was held March 18th, 2010 with 23 student entries, and two post-doctoral presenters. Four runners-up included, Danielle Hansgen (University of Delaware) with “Model Based Prediction of Bimetallic Catalysts for Hydrogen Production from Ammonia Decomposition”; Eddie Martono (University of Pennsylvania) with “Studies of the active sites on supported cobalt catalysts for the steam reforming of ethanol”; Julie Molinari (Lehigh University) with “Raman, UV-Vis and IR-ATR Study of Vanadium Haloperoxidase Functional Mimics”; and Bill Lonergan (University of Delaware) with “Structure Property Relationships of Supported Pt/Ni Bimetallic Catalysts: Correlating the Extent of Pt-Ni Bimetallic Bond Formation with Low-Temperature Hydrogenation Activity”.

Top honors went to Dustin Fickel from the University of Delaware, with his poster titled “Copper Coordination in Cu-SSZ-13 and Cu-SSZ-16 Investigated by Variable-Temperature XRD”. Along with top honors, Dustin also received an invitation to present his research at the Catalysis Club’s Annual Spring Symposium, May 13th 2010 at Villanova University.

Support for Attendees to the 2010 Gordon Conference on Catalysis

We are pleased to announce that partial registration support ($400), which will cover 50% of the registration fee, will be available for graduate students, post-docs and early career faculty. Approximately 40-50 participants will receive support depending on available funding. This support is made possible by grants from the National Science Foundation- Catalysis and Kinetics Program, Department of Energy – Office of Science, the North American Catalysis Society, and industry contributors (see the GRC website for an updated list as this support becomes available).

Request for support should be sent by applying to the conference chair via email to and by ensuring that the following text appears in the subject heading of your email GRC 2010 Catalysis. Please submit your application before March 31, 2010, and include as an attachment one pdf document that includes a short one page CV, a statement of your research interests, and one page letter of endorsement from your research advisor (for students and post-docs) or one page letter of current and pending support (in case of junior faculty). Support will be allocated to one student or post-doc per research group (unless additional support becomes available) and to junior faculty who are at the early career stage (with minimal extramural funding). The participants who receive support are required to present a poster at the meeting. Further information on the conference and travel support can be obtained from Prof. Datye’s web site:

To attend the GRC, you must apply via the following web site:

For further information, please contact the conference organizers:

Abhaya K. Datye, Chair
Distinguished Professor
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM, 87131-0001

Bruce Cook, Vice–Chair
Advanced Refining Manager
BP Products N.A.
Naperville, IL, 60563-8460

Call for Nominations of The 2010 Catalysis Club of Philadelphia Award

Each year the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia recognizes an outstanding member of the catalysis community, who has made significant contributions to the advancement of Catalysis. Such advancement can be scientific, technological, or in organization leadership. The Award consists of a plaque and a $1000 cash prize.

We appreciate your help in submitting nominations. The entire nomination package, including a resume and recommendation letters, should not be more than 10 pages. The deadline for the receipt of nominations is April 15, 2010. Prior nomination packages sent in 2007 or later will automatically be considered for the 2010 Award.

Nomination letter along with supporting materials should be emailed to

Dr. Hai-Ying Chen
Johnson Matthey Inc.
436 Devon Park Drive
Wayne, PA 19087
Phone (610) 341-3441

Previous Winners of the Award

  • 2009 Ted Oyama
  • 2008 David Olson
  • 2007 John Vohs
  • 2006 James Dumesic
  • 2005 Israel Wachs
  • 2004 Jingguang Chen
  • 2003 Frank E. Herkes
  • 2002 Steven D. Ittel
  • 2001 Mark Barteau
  • 2000 Henry C. Foley
  • 1999 Anne M. Gaffney
  • 1998 Ray Gorte
  • 1997 Leo E. Manzer
  • 1996 Mae Rubin
  • 1995 John N. Armor
  • 1994 Theodore A. Koch
  • 1993 George Kerr
  • 1992 Fran Waller
  • 1991 John A. Sofranko
  • 1990 Werner O. Haag
  • 1989 Maurice Mitchell, Jr.
  • 1988 George Kokotailo
  • 1987 James E. Lyons
  • 1986 Bruce C. Gates
  • 1985 N.Y. Chen
  • 1984 James R. Katzer
  • 1983 Edward Rosinski
  • 1982 Robert Eischens
  • 1981 James F. Roth
  • 1980 Abraham Schneider
  • 1979 Alvin B. Stiles
  • 1978 George W. Parshall
  • 1977 G.C.A. Schuit
  • 1976 Heinz Heinemann
  • 1975 Paul Venuto
  • 1974 Roland C. Hansford
  • 1973 Paul B. Weisz
  • 1972 Alfred E. Hirschlerli
  • 1971 G. Alex Mills
  • 1970 Paul H. Emmett
  • 1969 Charles J. Plank
  • 1968 Adalbert Farkas