Engineering Now | Summer 2009

Department of Chemical & Biochemical Engineering under new leadership

Sohrab RohaniProfessor Sohrab Rohani stepped down as Chair of the Department of Chemical & Biochemical Engineering, effective June 30, 2009, after serving 2 full terms (10 years).

Professor Rohani joined Western in 1999 as Department Chair and showed his leadership skills in facilitating steady growth of the department, in terms of number of undergraduate and graduate students as well as faculty members and overall research productivity and image of the department. He demonstrated an outstanding ability to excel in his many areas of responsibility, as a very effective educator, innovative researcher, and visionary leader.

Professor Rohani’s contributions have been widely accepted and recognized by his academic peers and industry, both nationally and internationally. Under his leadership, the department has now started a new undergraduate program in Green Process Engineering, the first of its kind in Canada.

Ajay RaySucceeding Professor Rohani as the new Chair of Chemical & Biochemical Engineering will be a daunting task, but Professor Ajay K. Ray is up for the challenge.

Prior to accepting the Chair position, professor Ray was the Associate Chair, Graduate, in the Department of Chemical & Biochemical Engineering and an internationally recognized researcher in catalysis and reaction engineering. His administrative experience and work with curriculum planning will clearly benefit Western Engineering as the Faculty moves forward with its ambitious academic plans.

Professor Ray received his BSc (Chemistry) and BTech (Chem. Eng.) from the University of Calcutta, MTech from the Indian Institute of Technology, and PhD (Chem. Eng) from the University of Minnesota. Prior to joining The University of Western Ontario in 2005, professor Ray was a faculty member with the Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, at the National University of Singapore.

Professor Ray’s research efforts have resulted in over 100 refereed journal papers, 4 book chapters, a textbook entitled “Mathematical Methods in Chemical and Environmental Engineering” (International Thomson Learning), and a European patent on an innovative photocatalytic reactor. He is a dedicated teacher who has developed and taught a number of undergraduate and graduate courses in Chemical Engineering, and helped develop professional short courses on “Applications of Optimization in Chemical Industry” and “Mathematical Methods in Engineering with Computers” for practicing engineers.

In addition to a new Chair, the Department of Chemical & Biochemical Engineering also welcomes professor Jesse Zhu as Associate Chair, Graduate Studies and professor Kibret Mequanint as Associate Chair, Undergraduate Studies.

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.: Allison Stevenson
Spencer Engineering Building, Room 2074
Phone: (519) 850-2917 Fax: (519) 661-3808