Ronald W. Rousseau

School Chairman
Cecil J. “Pete” Silas Chair
School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Georgia Institute of Technology



B.S. 1966, Louisiana State University
M.S. 1968, Louisiana State University
Ph.D. 1969, Louisiana State University

Research Interests

Processes involving separation and/or purification are of great practical importance and at the core of Chemical Engineering. Dr. Rousseau has focused his research on such processes and related phenomena. A large body of his work has been on crystallization, which is one of the most important means by which separation or purification is conducted. He has led studies of crystal nucleation and growth and the role of these phenomena in determining crystal morphology, purity and size distributions. These characteristics inevitably determine the value of crystalline products and the feasibility of the process by which they are produced. He is particularly interested in the application of crystallization technology to the recovery and purification of high-value-added chemicals, including biologically produced materials, and the use of crystallization in environmentally important processes.

Brief Biography

Ronald W. Rousseau holds the Cecil J. “Pete” Silas Endowed Chair and was chair of the School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology for more than 26 years. He was a member of the faculty at North Carolina State University, served as a visiting professor at Princeton University, and received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. from Louisiana State University.

Both teaching and research are important to Dr. Rousseau. He has taught undergraduate chemical engineering courses in essentially all of the core areas of the discipline and graduate courses in separations and mass transfer. He is co-author of Elementary Principles of Chemical Processes (now in its third edition), an undergraduate text used by more than 80% of the chemical engineering programs in the United States, and editor of the Handbook of Separation Process Technology. His research has explored numerous areas related to separation processes, and he has published more than 190 journal articles and given more than 275 presentations on his research.

For outstanding contributions to chemical engineering, Dr. Rousseau received the Founders Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). He also received Warren K. Lewis Award from AIChE for outstanding contributions to chemical engineering education, the Clarence G. Gerhold Award from the Separations Division of the AIChE and the Forest Products Award from the Forest Products Division of AIChE. He is a Fellow of both AIChE and the American Association for the Advancement of Science and is a member of the LSU Engineering Hall of Distinction. On the occasion of the AIChE Centennial, he was cited by AIChE as one of 30 authors of groundbreaking chemical engineering books. He has been awarded a Docteur Honoris Causa by L’Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse and the Council for Chemical Research selected him for the Mac Pruitt Award.

Dr. Rousseau has served as an executive editor of Chemical Engineering Science, a member of the Publication Board of Chemical Engineering Education, and a topic editor for Crystal Growth and Design; he has been a member of the advisory boards of the Wiley Series in Chemical Engineering and of Separations Technology, a consulting editor for the AIChE Journal, and an associate editor of the Journal of Crystal Growth. He has served as Chair of the Council for Chemical Research and a member of the Board of Directors of AIChE.

CRESP Projects

Development of Processes in Waste Treatment Using Crystallization and Particle Technology


Link to Georgia Tech website

Additional Information:

Detailed profile – Georgia Institute of Technology

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