Associate Professor Ryan Lively Wins AIChE’s 2020 Colburn Prize

Associate Professor Ryan Lively Wins AIChE’s 2020 Colburn Prize

Ryan P. Lively, an associate professor and the John H. Woody Faculty Fellow in Georgia Tech’s School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (ChBE), is the 2020 winner of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ (AIChE) Allan P. Colburn Award for Excellence in Publications by a Young Member of the Institute.

Each year, the award recognizes outstanding progress in the field of chemical engineering by one researcher in any area of chemical engineering research who is within 12 years of completing their PhD at the end of the calendar year in which the award is presented. One of the most prestigious awards an early career chemical engineer can be receive, the Colburn award recognizes significant advances and contributions to the field of chemical engineering.

Lively is being honored for his broad contributions to separations science. He has worked to improve adsorption-based gas separations and has led the experimental and conceptual development of organic solvent reverse osmosis separations. Innovations in Lively’s work span discovery of new materials, fundamental understanding of adsorption and mass-transfer mechanisms, and development of practical separation systems, including advances in materials manufacturing.

He has also served the chemical engineering community through his service as a board member on the North American Membrane Society, and as an Associate Editor of Chemical Engineering Science as well as an Editor at the Journal of Membrane Science.

In addition to his contributions to research in chemical engineering, Lively serves as the director of the Integrated Separations Science and Engineering Center at Georgia Tech and will begin as director of the UNCAGE-ME Energy Frontier Research Center in August.

Lively joined the faculty at Georgia Tech in 2013 as an assistant professor, and in the last 7 years his research team has produced over 90 papers that have been cited more than 5,000 times according to Google Scholar.

Professor David Sholl, the John F. Brock III School Chair of ChBE, says, “Ryan's work is making a real difference to world-scale problems faced by the chemical process industry. This award is a wonderful recognition of his impressive achievements."

Sholl notes that Lively is a “Georgia Tech triple threat,” holding undergraduate and PhD degrees  from ChBE and now a faculty position here.

Professor and Cecil J. "Pete" Silas Chair Emeritus Ronald Rousseau says, “Ryan has chosen to focus his research on problems of global significance. His successes will influence the quality of the environment and the utility of resources available to humanity. That’s not bad for any chemical engineer, but it is remarkable for one at his career stage.”

Lively has supervised or co-supervised 20 PhD theses to date, while advising 11 post-doctoral fellows. Alumni from his group work in a diverse array of organizations around the globe ranging from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to the Dow Chemical Company and Intel. Two of his former mentees now hold faculty positions.   

Lively will receive the award at the AIChE Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California, on November 16, 2020.



Ryan Lively