Pitt | Swanson Engineering
Covestro Distinguished Lecture Series

The Covestro Distinguished Lectureship (a continuation of the Bayer Distinguished Lectureship) is presented annually by the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, and recognizes excellence in chemical education, outreach and research. The lecture is sponsored by Covestro LLC, a world-leading supplier of high-tech polymer materials.

2019 Covestro Distinguished Lecturer

Julio M. Ottino, Distinguished R.R. McCormick Institute Professor, Walter P. Murphy Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering

Dean, Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science

Northwestern University

Thursday, April 4, 2019

5:00 PM Benedum 102

When Art, Technology, and Science Were One: Why They Split, and Why They May Join Again

There was a time before science and technology were known by those names. Art, technology, and science formed a continuum, and the modes of thinking enriched each other. The 16th century has many examples of cooperative enterprises between scientists and artists; Galileo Galilei may be clearest case of Italian Renaissance art affecting the course of science. Galileo is also associated with birth of the scientific method, and the scientific method changed everything: science broke company with art, and mixing imagery with analytical thinking became suspect (at least by some). This view is far too narrow -- visual imagination is a central element of scientific imagination. This talk will cover the links between art, technology, and science through time, starting when people had a foot in two camps and when new technologies appeared and the scientific basics of those technologies were still evolving, until reaching examples of the present time. It closes with lessons that can be transferred across domains.

Friday, April 5, 2019

9:30AM Benedum 102

The Evolution of Mixing: From Stretching and Folding to Cutting and Shuffling; Parallels, Divergences, and Lessons

The birth of mixing of fluids and some of the first incursions into granular matter and segregation offer valuable insights and lessons. These two topics developed in wildly different ways and serve as examples of the power of couching ideas in mathematical formalisms, but also of the challenges that ensue when a general formalism is elusive. We present an array of results, spanning fluid mixing at one extreme and granular matter and segregation at the other. Examples cover vibration, surface flow, segregation, and pattern formation, and serve to illustrate how fundamental work can affect fields as far apart as multiple branches of engineering and geophysical sciences.

Dr. Julio M. Ottino is currently dean of the Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University and holds the titles of Distinguished Robert R. McCormick Institute Professor and Walter P. Murphy Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering. Previously, he was chair of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering and founding co-director of the Northwestern Institute for Complex Systems. Ottino received his PhD in chemical engineering at the University of Minnesota and held positions at UMass/Amherst and chaired and senior appointments at Caltech and Stanford.

Ottino’s research has appeared on the covers of Nature, Science, Scientific American, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA, and other publications and has impacted fields as diverse as fluid dynamics, granular dynamics, microfluidics, geophysical sciences, and nonlinear dynamics and chaos. A recipient of many awards in the field, Ottino was previously recognized by AIChE with the Alpha Chi Sigma Award, the William H. Walker Award, the Institute Lecture, and was named one of the "100 Chemical Engineering of the Modern Era." He was awarded the Fluid Dynamics Prize from the American Physical Society. In 2017, Ottino was awarded the Bernard M. Gordon Prize for Innovation in Engineering and Technology Education from the National Academy of Engineering, the nation’s highest award for engineering education, for the development of Whole-Brain Engineering at Northwestern. He is a member of both the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


Dr. George Whitesides
Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor, Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University


Dr. Matthew Tirrell
Dean and Founding Pritzker Director of the Institute for Molecular Engineering, University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory


Dr. Gábor A. Somorjai
Professor of Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley
Faculty Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


Dr. Kristi S. Anseth
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering
University of Colorado-Boulder


Dr. Jens K. Norskov
Leland T. Edwards Professor of Chemical Engineering
Stanford University


Dr. Jay D. Keasling
Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
University of California-Berkeley


Dr. Arup Chakraborty
Robert T. Haslam Professor of Chemical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Dr. James A. Dumesic
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering
University of Wisconsin – Madison


Dr. Jacob Israelachvili
Professor of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara


Dr. Robert E. Cohen
St. Laurent Professor of Chemical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Dr. Douglas C. Cameron
Chief Scientific Officer, Khosla Ventures
Menlo Park, California


Dr. Paul T. Anastas
Professor in the Practice of Green Chemistry, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies
Yale University


Ms. Linda J. Fisher
Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer


Dr. Buddy D. Ratner
Washington Research Foundation Endowed Professor of Bioengineering and Professor of Chemical Engineering
Director, University of Washington Engineered Biomaterials (UWEB)


Dr. David A. Weitz
Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics
Harvard University


Dr. Mildred S. Dresselhaus
Institute Professor
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Dr. Nicholas Peppas
Showalter Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering
Purdue University


Dr. John Deutch
Institute Professor
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Dr. Mary L. Good
Managing Member
Venture Capital Investors, LLC


Dr. L. E. Scriven
Regents' Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science
University of Minnesota


Dr. David Tirrell
Professor of Polymer Science and Engineering
University of Massachusetts


Dr. Keith E. Gubbins
Professor of Chemical Engineering
Cornell University


Dr. John H. Seinfeld
Louis E. Nohl Professor
California Institute of Technology


Dr. Mark E. Davis
Professor of Chemical Engineering
California Institute of Technology


Dr. Robert S. Langer
Kenneth J. Germeshausen Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology