Two Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Graduate Students Present at International Conference

Ko Nee and Michael F. Gray make presentations at the 19th International Solvent Extraction Conference

Ko Nee and Michael F. Gray, third year graduate students in the Chemical and Biochemical Engineering program in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (ChEMS), presented their work at the 19th International Solvent Extraction Conference (ISEC) in Santiago, Chile.

Nee presented her research about a separation process using membranes to selectively remove radiotoxic elements from used nuclear fuel. She will continue in the group of Assistant Professor Mikael Nilsson, Ph.D., ChEMS, pursuing a Ph.D., as part of the newly started nuclear security consortium known as SUCCESS PIPELINE (Seven Universities Coordinating Coursework and Experience from Student to Scientist in a Partnership for Identifying and Preparing Educated Laboratory-Integrated Nuclear Experts). SUCCESS PIPELINE is a new consortium of universities that was granted a total of $25 million from the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) for the education and training of the next generation of nuclear science experts specifically in broadly related nuclear security issues.

Gray presented research related to fundamental thermodynamic interactions in separations processes for nuclear waste. At The Henry Samueli School of Engineering, he is working to address the important and challenging issue of describing deviations from ideality in non-aqueous solutions. This is part of a larger collaboration of Nilsson’s UC Irvine Nuclear Group with the Idaho National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

The ISEC is the largest conference in the field of solvent extraction and is held every third year in different locations across the globe and is planned by the International Committee for Solvent Extraction (ICSE).