People

Faculty Members


Dr. Selma Mededovic Thagard

Dr. Thagard’s research interests lie in applications of electrical discharge plasmas for drinking and waste water remediation, exhaust gas cleaning, hydrogen production from renewable sources, and food sterilization as well as in the mathematical modeling of such systems.

PROFESSIONAL APPOINTMENTS

  1. Assistant Professor (August 2010-Present)
    Department of Chemical  and Biomolecular Engineering, Clarkson University, Potsdam, New York.
  2. Postdoctoral Researcher (August 2009-July 2010)
    Department of Chemistry, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado.
  3. Postdoctoral Researcher (August 2007-April 2009)
    Department of Ecological Engineering, Toyohashi University of Technology, Toyohashi, Japan.
  4. Graduate Research Assistant (August 2003-June 2007)
    Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, Tallahassee, Florida.
  5. Research and Development Engineer (January 2002-May 2003), Katran, Zagreb, Croatia.

EDUCATION

  • Ph.D in Chemical Engineering (August 2003-June 2007)
    Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida.
    Dissertation Title: Chemical Processes in Aqueous Phase Pulsed Electrical Discharges: Fundamental Mechanisms and Applications to Organic Compound Degradation. Dissertation advisor: Bruce R. Locke.
  • BS Chemical Engineering (September 1997-May 2002)
    Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia.

Current Graduate Students


Gunnar Stratton (Spring 2012-Present, MS Student)

Project: Development of a Plasma-membrane Reactor for Drinking Water Treatment.

Gunnar is working on plasma reactor scale up for drinking water treatment.

Joshua Franclemont (Summer 2011-Present, PhD Student)

Project: Direct-In-Liquid Electrical Discharge for the Production of Hydrogen-Rich Gas.

Josh is studying the effects of bulk liquid composition on the properties of liquid-phase electrical discharge plasmas. He is also working on the optimization of the production of hydrogen-rich gas from glycerol and biodiesel from vegetable oil.

Xiangru Fan (Fall 2013-Present, PhD Student)

Project: Mathematical Modeling of Electrical Discharge Plasmas using Density Functional Theory Simulations.

Xiangru is working on creating mathematical models for electrical discharge plasmas.

Fei Dai (Spring 2013-Present, MS Student)

Project: CONTENT NEEDED

Fei is working on novel plasma technologies for removing organic contaminants from water.

Pooya Estifaee (Fall 2014-Present, MS Student)

Project: Pulsed Electrical Discharges in Water: Understanding the Mechanism of Plasma Sterilization.

Pooya is working on sterilization of water with electrical discharge plasmas.

Current Undergraduate Students


Lauren Smales (Summer-Present, Honors)

Project: Production of Biodiesel using Electric Discharge Plasmas

Peter Van Lente (Spring 2015-Present, Honors)

Project: Development of Novel Techniques for Quantification of Hydroxyl Radicals.

Benjamin Tucker (Fall 2015-Present, Directed Individual Study)

Project The Effect of a Compound’s Initial Concentration on its Rate of Degradation by Electrical Plasmas.

Past Postdoctoral Research Associates


Sudheer Kumar Yannam (May 2015-Present, Postdoctoral Research Associate)

Project: Plasma-assisted Sterilization of Liquid Food.

Sudheer worked on the application of liquid discharge plasma on the inactivation of foodborne pthogens such as Escherichia coli in food juices, in addition to evaluate the quality of plasma treated juices.

Past Graduate Students


Make Geng (Fall 2010-Spring 2012, MS Student)

Project: Degradation of Rhodamine B and Bisphenol A by Advanced Oxidation Processes in Water.

Make worked on the ultrasonic degradation of dyes in aqueous solutions and the fundamental processes in electrical discharges. Make completed his studies, graduating in May 2012.

Tomislava Vukusic (Summer 2014, PhD Student):

Tomislava worked on the implementation of liquid-phase electrical discharge plasmas in sterilization of fruit juices and milk. Tomislava now works at University of Zagreb as a Research Assistant in the Department of Food Processing.

Past Undergraduate Students


Kevin Fisher (Spring 2011-Spring 2012, Honors)

Project: Carbon-based Material Synthesis using Liquid-phase Plasmas.

Kevin is now attending University of Michigan (MI).

Jilliane Benedetto (Spring 2012, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Degradation of Caffeine using Ultrasonic Processing.

Jilliane now works as a Quality Technician at Michelin (SC).

Sean Eustace (Fall 2013, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Optimization of Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma Jet Reactor Design.

Kate Price (Spring 2012-December 2013, Honors)

Project: Fundamental Chemical Processes of Plasmas formed in Liquid and above the Liquid Surface.

Kate is now attending Duke University (NC).

Benjamin Clark (Spring 2014-Spring 2015, Directed Individual Study):

Project:  The Role of Electrode Material in the Degradation of Rhodamine B Dye by Electrical Plasmas.

Paul Martin (Spring 2014, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Determining the Extent of Thermal Degradation of Phenol during an Electrical Discharge.

Paul is now employed as a Process Design Engineer for ExxonMobil (TX).

Taylor Henderson (Spring 2014, Directed Individual Study)

Project: The Production of Hydrogen Peroxide in Negative Polarity Electrical Plasmas.

Taylor is now employed as a Fabrication Technician at GE Healthcare (NY).

Alec Vosnik (Spring 2014, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Optimization of the Pulsed Plasma-generating Electrical Circuit.

Amanda Christensen (Fall 2014-Spring 2015, Directed Individual Study)

Project: The Role of Solute’s Hydrophobicity on the Production of Hydrogen Peroxide in Electrical Plasmas.

Amanda is now employed as a Development Engineer for Taconic (NY).

Averi Lorenzi (Fall 2014-Spring 2015, Directed Individual Study)

Project: The Role of Solute’s Hydrophobicity on the Production of Hydrogen Peroxide in Electrical Plasmas.

Jaclyn Yeaton (Spring 2015, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Phenol Degradation by Electrical Plasmas.

Erika Chin (Spring 2012-Spring 2014, Honors)

Project: Fundamental Chemical Processes Occurring during Ultrasonic Degradation of p-nitrosodimethylaniline.

Erika now works as a Process Engineering Associate for Audubon Engineering (TX).

Alexandra Cameron (Spring 2013-Spring 2015, Honors)

Project: The Application of Cold Plasma for the Treatment of Fruit Juices.

Ariel Langevin (Spring 2013-Spring 2015, Honors)

Project: Plasma Sterilization of Drinking Water.

Ariel now attend the University of Vermont (VT).

Abagail Lueber (Fall 2013-Spring 2014, Directed Individual Study):

Project: The Role of Surface Tension in the Plasma Jet Treatment of Aqueous Liquids.

Abagail now attends University of Pittsburg (PA).

Thomas Jacobsen (Spring 2012, Directed Individual Study)

Project: Conversion of Glycerol into Methanol using Ultrasound.

Thomas graduated from Clarkson University in 2014.

Tessora Young (Summer 2011, REU Student):

Project: Oxidative Degradation of Bisphenol A: A Comparison between Fenton reagent, UV, UV/H2O2 and Ultrasound.

Tessora now works as a Graduate Student Research Assistant at the University of Washington (WA).

Joshua Dalton (Summer 2012, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Mathematical Modeling of Electrical Discharges in Liquid Water: The Chemistry Inside Plasma Channel.

Callum Symons (Summer 2013, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Density Functional Theory Study on Energy of Methanol Degradation by Non-thermal Plasma.

Callum is now studying abroad at the University of Bradford (UK).

Mengli Shi (Summer 2013, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: The Efficiency of Electrical Discharge Plasma in Liquid Sterilization.

Mengli now attends The Johns Hopkins University (MA).

Ryan Anthony (Summer 2013, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Removal of Rhodamine B by a Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD) Plasma Jet.

Ryan is now employed by Merck & Company as a Specialist Engineering in Chemical Ops.

Chase Nau-Hix (Summer 2014, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: The Role of Solution Conductivity in the Efficiency of a Plasma Reactor Operation.

Dean Duque (Summer 2015, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: The Effect of a Compound’s Initial Concentration on its Extent of Removal by a Plasma Liquid Turbulent Jet.

Dean still attends Clarkson University.

John Cain (Summer 2015, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: The Effect of a Compound’s Initial Concentration on its Extent of Removal by a Plasma Liquid Turbulent Jet.

John still attends Clarkson University.

Matthew McGruffey (Summer 2015, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Plasma Reactor Scale up: Argon Recirculation.

 Matthew still attends Clarkson University

Stephanie Hernandez (Summer 2015, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Fluorescence Spectroscopy for OH Radicals Quantification.

tephanie graduated from Clarkson University in 2015.

Eugenia Abreu (Summer 2015, Summer Undergraduate Research)

Project: Understanding the Mechanism of Plasma Sterilization.