Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Top 20 Doctoral Program—National Research Council


Dept. of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
University of Houston
S222 Engineering Bldg 1
4726 Calhoun Rd
Houston, TX 77204-4004
Phone: 713-743-4300
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Neal R. Amundson Endowed Chair of Chemical Engineering

In honor of an engineer, an educator, a colleague and a friend, the UH Cullen College of Engineering would like to establish an endowed chair named after the late Dr. Neal R. Amundson, Cullen Professor Emeritus of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and professor of mathematics at UH.

AmundsonNeal R. Amundson was widely regarded as one of the most prominent chemical engineering educators in the United States.

A Minnesota native, Amundson was educated at the University of Minnesota, earning a BSChE (1937), an MSChE (1941) and a Ph.D. in Mathematics (1945). He chaired their Chemical Engineering Department for 25 years, leading it to the preeminent position that it holds today. He joined the University of Houston Department of Chemical Engineering in the mid 1970’s, helping to launch it into the top 10 nationally in the early 1980s. He served as UH Provost from 1987 to 1989.

Amundson is recognized as an exceptionally prolific, innovative and influential chemical engineering researcher. His contributions include modeling and analysis of chemical reactors, separation systems, polymerization and coal combustion. He has had a profound, pioneering impact on the education of chemical engineers, changing the teaching of the field from a qualitative, descriptive approach to precise scientific methodologies. He was an intellectual leader of the chemical engineering community, and he chaired the NRC committee that wrote the report on “Frontiers in Chemical Engineering.”

Amundson’s contributions have been recognized through conferral of numerous professional awards by the AIChE, ACS, ISCRE and ASEE. He was elected to the NAE, NAS, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received the NAE Founders’ Award, and honorary doctorates from the Universities of Minnesota, Notre Dame, Pennsylvania, Guadalajara, and Northwestern University. He received the Farfel Award, the highest faculty honor given by the University of Houston. The building that houses the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the University of Minnesota was named “Amundson Hall” in 1979. ISCRE has named its major award the Amundson Award.

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Known as the “Father of Modern Chemical Engineering,” Dr. Amundson’s impact on the field was substantiated by his pioneering research in chemical reaction engineering and his role as one of the leading engineering educators in the country. We would like to memorialize his impact to the field by establishing this endowment at the University of Houston.

To endow a chaired professorship, the UH Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering hopes to raise $1 million in Dr. Amundson’s honor. The endowed chair will provide additional support for chemical engineering faculty at UH. If you are interested in contributing to this fund, please contact Senior Director of Development Russell Dunlavy at 713-743-4209 or rtdunlavy [at] uh [dot] edu or ChBE Department Chair Michael Harold at 713-743-4322 or mharold [at] uh [dot] edu.

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Thank you for supporting the legacy of Neal R. Amundson.