Graduate Students

Yun-Yang Lee

PhD Candidate

Lee earned his B.S. and M.S. in Chemical Engineering in 2016 from National Tsing-Hua University, Taiwan. After his graduation, he continued his training at the University of Tokyo, Japan for a year (2017-2018). His past research involved monomer/polymer synthesis, polymer physics, physical chemistry, and battery techniques (fuel cell & LIB). As a PhD student, his research interests focus on the synthesis and characterization of functionalized ILs and PILs, and their applications on LiBs as well as CO2 capture. When not in lab, he enjoys jogging, mountain climbing, cooking, and playing Chinese musical instrument.  

Drace Penley

PhD Student

Drace earned his B.S. and M.S. in Chemical Engineering in 2019 from the Ohio State University. There, his research focus was in carbon capture using Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs). He helped develop a charge assignment method for atoms in newly discovered MOFs using atom connectivity. As a Ph.D. student, his research interests focus on understanding the solvation structure and transport mechanism of solute ions in multicomponent ionic liquids. Outside of the lab, he enjoys playing water polo and cooking.

William Dean

PhD Student

William earned his B.Ch.E in Chemical Engineering and Chemistry from the University of Minnesota in the spring of 2018. After graduation he worked as a researcher, studying polymer membranes, polymer solutions and polymer microfibers. As a PhD student, his research interests lie in studying and characterizing deep eutectic solvents in the context of energy storage applications. When not in lab, William enjoys running, weightlifting and cooking.

Aidan Klemm

PhD Student

Aidan received B.S. in Chemical Engineering in 2020 from CWRU. He has been a member of the Energy Lab since 2018 where he worked on various aspects of ionic liquids and ionic liquid based membranes for CO2 separations. He started his PhD in the Fall of 2020. His thesis is focused on novel solvents and separation mechanisms for CO2 direct air capture (DAC). His other involvements include being a staff member at the CWRU LGBT Center and singing in the Case Concert Choir.

Oguz Kagan Coskun

PhD student

Oguz has B.S. in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering and Mechanical Engineering from Istanbul Technical University, Turkey. His research experiences include molten salt electrolysis and material characterization for electrocatalysis. His PhD project is about understanding the electrode-electrolyte interfaces during electrocatalysis.  Outside of the lab, he loves reading, cooking and hitting the gym.

Ruth Dikki

PhD student

Ruth earned her bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering in 2019 from Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria, after which she served for a year at the National Teacher's Institute in Nigeria. Her past research involved the use of Matlab for pipeline studies. As a PhD student, her research interest focuses on developing materials for the direct air capture of CO2. Outside the lab, Ruth enjoys watching cartoons, and writing.

Sanduni Wijesooriya

PhD student

Sanduni received her BS in Chemistry in 2020 from the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka. Her undergraduate research was on the determination of radical scavenging mechanisms of epicatechin molecules using computational methodologies. As a Ph.D. student, she will be focusing on the electrochemical reduction of CO2 to fuels. In her leisure time, she enjoys reading, watching movies, and playing cricket.

Miguel Munoz

PhD student

Miguel earned his B.S. in Biological and Pharmaceutical Chemistry and M.S. in Chemical Science
and Technology from the Autonomous University of Zacatecas, Mexico. His past research involved DFT
theoretical calculations and experimental work focused on quinone derivatives for energy storage applications. As a Ph.D. student, his research interest are eutectic solvents for redox flow batteries. Miguel enjoys watching and playing soccer, reading, and going to the gym during his free time.

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Post-doctoral Researchers

Saudagar Dongare

Saudagar earned his PhD in 2021 from Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology,Patiala, India. He has BS in Chemical Engineering and MS in Petrochemical Technology. His PhD thesis was focused on the development ofeffective and less expensive electro-catalysts for CO2 conversion to ethanol. Saudagar uses different in-situand ex-situ characterization methods to study catalyst’s physical,chemical and electrochemical properties. He currently studies the roleof ionic liquids on the CO2 electrochemical reduction reaction. Inhis free time, he enjoys travelling and exploring historical places both nearand far. He also enjoys learning new technologies and watching comedy shows.

Muhammad Zeeshan

Muhammad completed an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from BUITEMS, Quetta, Pakistan, in 2015. Subsequently, he joined Koç University, Istanbul, Turkey, and received his MS and Ph.D. degrees in 2018 and 2021, respectively. His doctoral dissertation was focused on modifying the structure of Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs), Graphene Aerogel (GAs), and Activated Carbon (AC) with Ionic Liquids (ILs) to tune their gas adsorption and separation performances. In addition, his research interests also include the thermophysical modeling of ILs. As a postdoctoral researcher at the Energy Lab, his work is related to developing novel sorbent materials for direct air capture of CO2. Besides his lab work and research, Zeeshan loves traveling to explore nature, hiking, learning novel technologies, and cooking traditional Pakistani food.

Eda Cagli

Eda earned B.Sdegree in Chemistry Education and M.S & Ph.D degrees in Chemistry fromMiddle East Technical University, Turkey. During her PhD, Eda studied aqueoussolution behavior and layer-by-layer self-assembly of polyoxazolines forbiomedical applications. After her PhD, she worked in industry for 3 years as R&DProject Engineer in paint manufacturing andProduction R&D Senior Researcher on advance materials engineering inconsumer electronics . As a postdoctoral researcher, herresearch focused on materials development for direct air capture of CO2.Outside the research, she is a professional EMCC accrediated mentor and Zumbainstructor. She enjoys traveling, swimming, cycling, going to gym & theaterand cooking.

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Undergraduate Researchers

Akissi Ange Dominique YAO

Undergraduate Researcher

Hailing from Yamoussoukro in Ivory Coast, Akissi Ange Dominique YAO is a third year undergraduate majoring in Chemical Engineering and minoring in German and Economics. She is a ThinkEnergy Fellow (2021-22) interested in discovering innovative, eco-friendly, and affordable energy techniques. Her research is about characterizing deep eutectic solvents for energy storage systems. Outside of class, she serves as the TORCH Chair on the executive board of CWRU National Society of Black Engineers. In her free time, she enjoys learning new languages, swimming, listening to music, and writing novels.

Jose Diego Zubieta

Undergraduate Researcher

Diego is a second year chemical engineering student at CWRU. His research interest is in the characterization of deep eutectic solvents in the context of their application in energy storage. Outside of the lab, Diego enjoys playing volleyball, reading, and going for walks

Hazel Gerber

Undergraduate Researcher

Hazel is a second year chemical engineering student at CWRU. Her research interest is in ionic liquids for energy storage devices. Outside of research, she enjoys swimming, hiking, and going to the gym.

Harrison Liu

Undergraduate Researcher

Harrison is a third-year chemical engineering student at CWRU. His research interest is in the application of ionic liquids in energy storage devices. Outside of the lab, Harrison enjoys skiing, hiking, and playing the bass guitar.

Bella Drucker

Undergraduate Researcher

Bella is a second year biology student at CWRU with minors in chemistry and art studio. Her research is on ionic liquid based membranes for CO2 separation. Outside of the lab, Bella enjoys skiing, cooking, painting, and listening to music.

Art Interns

Hannah Barkman

Hannah is a Junior Biomedical Art major at the Cleveland Institute of Art. She has partnered with researchers at the Cleveland Botanical Garden and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History's Anthropology Lab in her studies. In 2022, she will earn her BFA and start her career in Medical Illustration. Hannah is a new member to the energy lab, and her work includes making visual aids and graphics for electrochemical storage concepts. When not creating scientific illustrations, Hannah is a choreographer for both Geneva College Musical Theatre Camp and Hopewell High School's musical program in her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. 

Emily Durst

Emily is currently a junior at the Cleveland Institute of Art studying a Bachelors in Biomedical Art. Prior to CIA, she attended Kent State University for 3 years studying zoology before transferring. During her time in Kent she interned and worked at conservation centers, veterinary offices, and animal sanctuaries, working with both endangered and domesticated species. Now she partners with researchers and curators at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History and Cleveland Botanical Gardens for her studies. In her free time she runs a creative platform for young artists to meet, exchange new ideas, find mentors, and network with one another. Emily is a new member to the Energy Lab, and her work includes making graphics and visual representations of concepts in electrochemical storage.

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Past Members


Jeffrey Klein, PhD 2021, Postdoc at Los Alamos National Laboratory

Qianwen (Vivian) Huang, PhD  2019, Engineer at Silicon Valley Startup 

Suchitra Selvaraj, MS  2018, Researcher at Ecolectro, Inc.

Ningjin (Karen) Xu, MS 2018, Currently a PhD student at University of California Riverside

Brian Chen, MS 2020

Henry Squire, MS 2020, Currently a PhD student at University of California Berkeley

Hongchao Mao, Postdoc 2019-20

Kavin Pachuta, Postdoc, 2021, Currently a senior scientist at SVKroma LLC

Raziyeh (Melina) Ghahremani, Postdoc, 2021-22, Current a Researcher at Schaeffler Group

Undergraduate Researchers

Asya Orhan (2020-21)

Max Pennington (2019-20)

Caleb Wilt (2018-19) 

Dylan Klaiber (2019)  

Evio Panichi (2018 summer)

Guillermo F Gonzalez (2018)  

Jinyi Zhang (2018 summer)

Neil Chavan (2017-18)

Phoebe Huang (2017 -18)

Nicholas Asher Day (2017) 

REU Students

Victoria Zubizarreta (2019), University of Pittsburgh

Reagan Hairston(2018), Mississippi State University

ViAnn Thuy Pham (2017), University of Arizona

Kyle Terraciano (2017), University of Connecticut(co-advised with Prof. Daniel Lacks)

Art Interns

Alexander Stojkov (2018 – 19)

Joseph Williams (2017 – 19)

Ian Filo (2017)

Thomas Thornton (2016-17)

Using Format