Principal Investigator

Prof. Richard West

Richard H. West


Richard read Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge, completing his BA and MEng degrees in 2004. He was among the first cohort to spend a year at MIT on the undergraduate exchange program of the Cambridge-MIT Institute. He returned to MIT for a semester of core graduate classes at the start of his PhD, also in Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge. His thesis work, in the Computational Modelling Group of Prof. Markus Kraft, was on modeling the chloride process for the gas-phase synthesis of titanium dioxide nano particles. He finished in 2008 and returned to MIT once more, this time as a postdoctoral research associate working with Prof. William Green to develop detailed kinetic models and the tools used to create them. In 2011 he moved across the river to Boston, starting the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering group at Northeastern University. In 2018 he became an Associate Professor (with tenure) and the Associate Chair for Graduate Studies in the Department of Chemical Engineering, a position he held until his sabbatical in 2020.

Graduate Students

Nathan D. Harms (PhD)

Nate received an HBSc in Chemical Engineering from Oregon State University in 2016, with an option in Biochemical Processes. As an undergraduate, he conducted research in photoluminescence response of diatoms at Oregon State University and in development of drug delivery systems at Virginia Tech. He has also worked internships at ATI Wah Chang as an analytical chemist and at HP Inc. as a research and development engineer. He began his PhD in the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering Group in 2016.

Sai Krishna Sirumalla (PhD)

Krishna graduated with Bachelors in Chemical Engineering from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University in 2016, Andhra Pradesh, India. In his final year, he worked on a senior project related to the theoretical analysis of rheology of non-newtonian fluids in circular pipe.

Emily Mazeau (PhD)

Emily received a BS in Chemical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2017 in Troy, NY.  She worked on metabolic engineering and co-cultures for undergraduate research.

David Farina Jr. (PhD)

David received a BS in Chemistry from Boston College in 2016.  In 2017, he joined the Computational Modeling group as a PhD student in Chemical Engineering at Northeastern.

Chris Blais (PhD)

Chris received his BS in Chemical Engineering in 2015 from the University of New Hampshire. He worked as a Project Engineer for Superior Controls for four years commissioning and designing industrial control systems. He joined the Computational Modeling group as a PhD student in Chemical Engineering at Northeastern.

Chao Xu (PhD)

Chao received a BS in Chemistry from Dalian Jiaotong University, China in 2017. He completed an MS in Chemical Engineering in the Computational Modeling group in 2020 then became a PhD student. His undergraduate research was related to synthesis and characterization of luminescent nanomaterials. During his MS year, he worked as a research assistant on High throughput screening ELISA at EMD Serono, Merck KGaA.

Sevy Harris (PhD)

Sevy received her BS in Electrical Engineering in 2014 from Ohio State and her MS in Electrical Engineering from Stanford in 2016. She worked on Microsoft’s HoloLens for three years, designing flexible printed circuits and later writing test software for the depth camera module. She joined the Computational Modeling group in 2020 and is working towards her PhD in Chemical Engineering. 

Su Sun (PhD)

Su received a BS in Chemical Engineering in 2015 from Georgia Institute of Technology and a MS in Materials Science in 2017 from University of Southern California. He worked as a process engineer at Jet Plasma for two years developing thin film deposition technology. He joined the Computational Modeling group in 2021 as a PhD student.

Ting-Chen Lee (MS)

Ting-Chen received a BS in Chemical Engineering from Chung Cheng Institute of Technology. She is working towards an MS in Chemical Engineering in the Computational Modeling group.

Undergraduate Students

  • Kian Mehrabani (’21)
  • Benjamin Hoare (’21)
  • Aberdeen Dinius (’21)
  • Anthony Stohr (’21)


Graduate Students

Pierre Bhoorasingh. (PhD)

Pierre received a BSc in Chemical-Biological Engineering from MIT in 2007. As a part of the undergraduate research opportunities program there, he investigated the production of an alternative sweetener. After completing the BSc, he worked as a process engineer at a petroleum company where he was responsible for utilities such as boiler operations. He then attended the University of Pennsylvania where he received a MSE in Bioengineering in 2009. For his Master’s thesis, he optimized the production of human CD47 in order to investigate its biomedical applications. In 2011 he began his PhD at Northeastern University, where he became the first PhD student in the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering group. Toward the end of his PhD he did a Data Incubator Fellowship. He defended his Ph.D. thesis “Automated calculation of reaction kinetics via transition state theory” in June 2016, and now works as a Data Scientist at PillPack.

Fariba Seyedzadeh Khanshan. (PhD)

Fariba completed a BSc in the field of Chemical Engineering – Gas Industry at the Persian Gulf University in Boushehr, then an MSc in the field of Chemical Engineering – Biotechnology from the Islamic Azad University, Science and Research Campus, in 2009. The subject of her Master’s thesis was Thermodynamic Modeling of Escherichia Coli Metabolism for increasing Succinate yield. After working as a consultant in the field of renewable energy, she studied postgraduate chemical engineering at Virginia Commonwealth University for a year, before joining Northeastern University and the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering group in 2012. During her Ph.D. she completed a Graduate Certificate with the Gordon Engineering Leadership program. She defended her Ph.D. thesis “Automatic Generation of Detailed Kinetic Models for Complex Chemical Systems” in January 2016, and now works as a Principal Pharmacometrics Scientist at Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research.

Belinda Slakman. (PhD)

Belinda received a BSc in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University in 2010, with a certificate in Applications of Computing. As an undergraduate she conducted research in protein structure prediction, and developing a new method for propane-propylene separation. Upon graduation she worked as a research engineer for Exelus, Inc., tackling real industrial problems in energy, catalysis, and environmental engineering. In 2012 she began her PhD in the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering group at Northeastern University. During her Ph.D. she completed two internships at Intel Corp. and a Data Incubator Fellowship. She defended her Ph.D. thesis “New Domains in Automatic Mechanism Generation” in June 2017 and now works as a Senior Data Scientist at ZebiAI.

Rasha Atwi. (MS)

Rasha received a BE in Chemical Engineering from the American University of Beirut (AUB) in 2016. During her undergraduate studies at AUB, she conducted research for one year in pharmaceutical prioritization for environmental monitoring purposes, by making advantage of a multi criteria decision analysis approach. She also participated in a final year project that deals with the design of a plant for the conversion of biomass and sludge into gasoline by taking into account a wide range of design constraints. She did an internship at the Centre for the Theory and Application of Catalysis (CenTACat) within the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), where she was responsible for the preparation, characterization and testing of different types of heterogenous catalysts for Fischer Tropsch synthesis, which is an important reaction in generating renewable energy from biomass. In 2016, she began her MS in the Computational Modeling group at Northeastern University. She graduated in 2018 and began a PhD at Tufts University.

Priyanka Satpute. (MS)

Priyanka received a​ BSc in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2017. At MIT she spent several semesters working in the emerging field of plant nanobionics being developed by Prof. Michael Strano to explore possibilities of enhancing the photosynthetic capabilities of microalgae for potential biofuel production. Her focus was on modeling functionalized carbon nanotube uptake in plant vasculature and real-time imaging of their transport in various model organisms. She worked for Advanced Thermal Solutions in Norwood, MA in 2016 as an engineering intern to construct a comprehensive model of heat and fluid transport in heat pipes for product design optimization. She was a member of MIT’s premier East-Asian a cappella group, Syncopasian, and performed with them for four years as a vocal percussionist and alto. Priyanka began her MS in the Computational Modeling in Chemical Engineering Group at Northeastern University in 2017. She graduated in 2018 and became a Senior Consultant at Navigant (now Guidehouse).

Mingyu Wang. (MS)

Mingyu received a BS in Energy Engineering from North University of China in 2018. As an undergraduate student, he conducted two researches regarding the sensitivity of modified propellant and the synthesis of 3, 5-dinitropyrazole respectively. He also had an internship in Chinese Academy of Science, where he took advantage of the semiconductor photocatalysis mechanism to develop a deep cleansing instrument which could generate substantial strong-oxidants in a short time. Mingyu completed an MS degree in Chemical Engineering group at Northeastern University, including a research project in the CoMoChEng group.

Shenghui Qin. (MS)

Shenghui Qin completed his MS in safety engineering at NanJing Tech University in China. He used to conduct a research about CH4and C2HFlammability Zones and explosion hazard in Process Safety and Disaster Prevention Laboratory, which is guided by professor Chi-Min Shu. Besides, he also participated in an NSF project of china about the effects of wild fire on high-voltage power line. In general, his research experience is mainly about fire and explosion. In his spare time, he likes playing basketball and going to the gym. If there is more time, a good movie is appreciated.

Chikpezili Ajulu. (MS)

Chikpezili completed his BS in mechanical engineering at Northeastern University having completed 2 co-ops at Sensata technologies and Waters corporation. Chikpezili also conducted undergraduate research with the MINUS lab on polymer materials for improved mechanical properties. Having done his senior design capstone project on energy harvesting techniques with thermoelectric generators and thermal system analysis design he proceeded to do more work on the CFD analysis of gas emissions from the combustion of jet fuels in aero gas turbines. In 2020 Chikpezili completed an MS in mechanical engineering with a concentration in thermal-fluids engineering. He completed his MS thesis in the CoMoChEng group, studying combustion.


  • Carl Underkoffler (BSc)
  • Jason Cain (BSc)
  • Drew Baugher (BSc)
  • Esma Goktekin (BSc)
  • Anthony Silvi (BSc)
  • Jacob Barlow (BSc)
  • Victor Lambert (BSc)
  • Joseph Bonneau (BSc)
  • Chris Plonski (BSc)
  • Sean Troiano (BSc)

Future Members?

We are always interested in working with the brightest and best students, whether undergraduates, master’s, doctoral, or post-doctoral researchers. Many projects require no programming experience, and many others require no chemistry background. Please get in touch if you are interested in joining us.