Chemical company exec to discuss sustainability in chemical, energy industries

Dr. Jeffrey J. Siirola, Technology Fellow in the Eastman Research Division of Eastman Chemical Company in Kingsport, Tenn., will deliver the 2009 Tis Lahiri Memorial Seminar at Vanderbilt University. The seminar is sponsored by the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular

Engineering and will be held Monday, April 13, at 4:10 p.m. in Jacobs Believed in Me Auditorium in Featheringill Hall.

Siirola’s presentation – Sustainability and Carbon Management in the Chemical and Energy Industries – will include a roadmap of feasible steps that could be taken on a global scale to address environmental protection, greener chemistry and support sustainability within the chemical processing and energy industries.

Siirola, who has been with Eastman Chemical for 36 years, is responsible for an integrated process chemistry and conceptual process engineering laboratory in the Chemicals Research Division.

His areas of interest include chemical process synthesis, engineering design theory and methodology, resource conservation and recovery, sustainable development and growth, and artificial intelligence.

Siirola is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the 2005 president of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and a member of the American Chemical Society, the American Association for Artificial Intelligence, and the American Society for Engineering Education. He has served on numerous National Science Foundation and National Research Council panels, and on the advisory boards of several journals and chemical engineering departments.

He received a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from University of Utah and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The Tis (Soumen) Lahiri Memorial Foundation was established by friends and the parents of Soumen Atis Lahiri, who was a graduate student in the department of chemical engineering from 1987-89, and who passed away in 1989.

The aim of the foundation is to provide incentives to young students by recognizing and appreciating their hard work, devotion and academic accomplishments.  One of the activities of the foundation is to sponsor the annual Tis Lahiri Memorial Graduate Student Thesis Research Seminar and a luncheon for the department’s students, staff and faculty to honor the memory of Lahiri.