Data is a highly valuable resource worldwide – it fuels innovations in science, decision making, automation, medicine, and marketing. Machine learning is a powerful tool to enable human understanding of big data, allowing one to disentangle key factors that drive complex patterns in measured data. It furthermore allows us to build data-driven models for simulation and forecasting a wide range of phenomena.

Research in the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering is applying machine learning and physics-based simulation to study phenomena across a wide range of length-and time-scales, from chemical processes at the molecular level to climate change at the global scale. Recent work includes data-driven models to improve the speed of satellite retrieval algorithms, to better analyze and predict air pollution, and to design advanced materials through molecular and material property prediction.  Research is facilitated by extensive University-level computational resources, interdisciplinary informatics initiatives such as the Iowa Initiative for Artificial Intelligence, and courses in CBE and in related departments.  

Fun Fact: CBE faculty were among the first to combine molecular dynamics simulation with global atmospheric chemical transport models to explain how ammonia can escape during the high altitude droplet freezing; this, in part, explains the significant amount of ammonia in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere.


Gregory Carmichael

Gregory Carmichael

Karl Kammermeyer Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Current research: Development and application of chemical transport models (CTM) to studies in regional atmospheric chemistry, air quality, and climate.

PhD student joe gomes smiling in a grey suit

Joe Gomes

Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Current research: Quantum simulation, machine learning, energy materials, and catalysis.

Photo of Charles Stanier

Charles Stanier

Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Current research: Aerosol and gas-phase research applications in air pollution, climate science, and energy.

jun wang

Jun Wang

Professor and Interim Chair of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Current research: Satellite remote sensing and Earth system modeling, focusing on aerosols, radiative transfer, fires, air-land interaction, air quality, and climate.

Photo of Jing Zeng

Jing Zeng

Associate Professor of Instruction in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Current research: Mesoscale numerical and radiative transfer modeling, satellite remote sensing of aerosol and cloud, aerosol climate forcing and aerosol property retrieval using polarization, and land surface modeling of precipitation, soil moisture, and radiation.