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glass filled with fluid in research lab

Chemical engineering encompasses a broad range of cutting-edge research. The diverse education that chemical engineers receive allows them to work at the intersection of a variety of different fields, including biology, chemistry, energy, physics, materials science, and other engineering disciplines. With a premier location in downtown Boston, the department is perfectly located to take advantage of a wealth of collaborations with other universities, as well as local hospitals, medical centers, and industry.

In 2017, the department was ranked in the top five most impactful biomaterial research programs in the world by the Journal of Biomedical Materials Research.
Since 2017, the department has had 36 Visiting Scholars from all over the world learning, sharing, and collaborating on research.
International research collaborations have been established with the International Materials Research Center with Soochow University, China, and the Center for Nano and Pico Medicine with Wenzhou Institute of Biomaterials and Engineering, China.

Research Areas

Chemical engineering research at Northeastern is supported by two pillars of excellence: Advanced Materials Research and Biological Engineering. Not only will you find any number of fascinating projects in these areas with which you can become involved, but Northeastern is also pushing the limits of possibility at the integration of biological and physical systems by combining expertise from both of our pillars of excellence.

Want to figure out how to grow new cartilage cells that you can use to help eliminate osteoarthritis? How about working on making plant cells produce tough-to-synthesize anti-cancer drugs? Or using fluid mechanics and mass transport theory to develop better ways of dispersing those drugs in the body? Or how to develop materials to meet unprecedented needs in energy without damaging the environment ? All of that is happening now in the department.

Quantum-sized wires to make ultra-small circuitry? Stem cells to heal numerous diseases ? We’re working on that too, as well as new multifunctional materials that will help usher in the next generation of faster, smaller, more capable electronic devices. And ultra-thin polymer coatings that can be functionalized for every purpose, ranging from biocompatible surfaces, to semiconductor applications, to advanced radiation shielding.

Research Centers and Institutes

The College of Engineering is also home to a National Science Foundation Center for High-Rate Nanomanufacturing, as well as numerous other research centers and institutes and multidisciplinary research initiatives to push the boundaries of research.

Additionally, the Chemical Engineering department has established international research collaborations and centers, including:

  • The International Materials Research Center with Soochow University, China
  • Center for Nano and Pico Medicine with Wenzhou Institute of Biomaterials and Engineering, China (learn more)
building complex of glass walls multiple stories four photos of the inside of a lab at a university in China

Wenzhou Institute of Biomaterials and Engineering

Recent News

Webster Receives Funding with Spanish Researchers to Develop Better Implants

ChE Professor Thomas Webster and Professor Yadir Torres Hernandez from the University of Seville, Spain; PI have secured funding from the Spanish Government (via the National Research program) for a project entitled “Titanium-based implants with adapted stiffness, biofunctionalized surface and pores filled with biodegradable, antibacterial and potential therapeutic polymers”.

andrew jones

Jones Awarded Grant to Support Research on “Enabling a Lab-on-a-Faucet”

ChE Assistant Professor A-Andrew D. Jones, III received a $10k grant titled “Enabling a Lab-On-A-Faucet” from the Sloan Scholars Mentoring Network of the Social Science Research Council with funds provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Willits Selected as a BMES Fellow

ChE Professor and Chair Rebecca Willits selected as a Fellow of the Biomedical Engineering Society.

Abigail Koppes Receives BMES Rita Schaffer Young Investigator Award

ChE Assistant Professor Abigail Koppes won the Rita Schaffer Young Investigator Award from the Biomedical Engineering Society.