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Alissa Park

Lenfest Chair in Applied Climate Science of Earth and Environmental Engineering & Chemical Engineering, Director of the Lenfest Center for Sustainable Energy, Columbia University

2018 Research Award Winner

Dr. Ah-Hyung (Alissa) Park is a leading expert on the forms that carbon takes in both engineered and natural systems as humans transform them to extract energy or produce materials and fuels. Her research focuses include alternative energy production and sustainable energy conversion pathways, with an emphasis on integrated carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS). She has made multifaceted contributions to various sustainable energy and environmental subjects, from novel materials for carbon capture to synthetic fuels derived from renewable resources. Current efforts include fundamental studies of chemical and physical interactions of natural and engineered materials with CO2, such as the development of liquid-like nanoparticle organic hybrid materials (NOHMs). She and her research group designed NOHMs with tailored chemical and physical properties for CO2 capture, and she is currently working on electrochemical reduction of CO2 to chemicals and fuels using NOHMs and renewable energy. Park’s group is also working on innovative chemical and fuel synthesis pathways using unconventional sources such as biomass, shale gas, and municipal and industrial solid wastes, while minimizing environmental impacts. Park was the first female faculty member in the Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering at Columbia University, is the co-PI of the “Women In Energy” Program, and works to recruit women and minority students to the department. She holds several patents and has received numerous professional awards and honors, including the American Institute of Chemical Engineers - the 2018 PSRI Lectureship Award in Fluidization, the American Chemical Society, Energy and Fuels Division’s 2018 Emerging Researcher Award; the American Chemical Society, Women Chemists Committee’s 2017 Rising Star Award; and the National Science Foundation’s 2009 CAREER Award, among others. She earned a BASc and an MASc in Chemical Engineering from the University of British Columbia in Canada and a PhD in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from The Ohio State University.