Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Mark C. Thies, Ph.D., P.E.



Mark C. Thies

Dow Chemical Professor, P.E.
Separations, Thermodynamics, and Supercritical Fluids
Phone: 864-656-5424
Office: 221 Earle Hall

mark thies with studentsEducation

Ph.D., University of Delaware, 1985
B.S., Georgia Tech, 1977

Research Interests: Separations, Thermodynamics, and Supercritical Fluids

The focus of Dr. Thies's work is on separation processes where thermodynamics and phase equilibria play a major role, with an emphasis on dense gases and supercritical fluids as the separating agents.  Energy- and materials-related applications are of particular interest.  Projects of current interest include thermochemical cycles for the large-scale, "carbon free" production of hydrogen by water-splitting; dense-gas extraction for the molecular design of carbonaceous pitches for advanced carbon materials; the development of an equation of state for predicting liquid crystal formation in carbonaceous oligomers; and rapid expansion of supercritical fluids for the synthesis of polymeric and organic nanoparticles.

Selected Publications

Velez, J.; Thies, M.C. pH-based Fractionation and Physical Characterization of CO2-Precipitated Lignin.  Submitted for publication in Bioresour. Technol., 2013.

Tekinalp, H. L.; Cervo, E. G.; Fathollahi, B.; Thies, M. C.  The Effect of Molecular Composition and Structure on the Development of Porosity in Pitch-Based Activated Carbon Fibers, Carbon, in press.

Klett, A. S.; Mena, S. E.; Bruce, D. A.; Thies, M. C. Liquid–Liquid Equilibrium Tie-Line Compositions at Elevated Temperatures and Pressures for the I2–H2O and HI–I2–H2O Systems of the Sulfur-Iodine Cycle, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 2012, 37, 15020-15028.

Tapriyal, D.; Fan, X.; Heintz, Y.; Morsi, B.; Beckman, E.; Enick, R.; Sane, A.; Thies, M.; Schutte, G.; Niederst, J. Micronization of Polyethylene Terephthalate via Freezing of Highly Sheared Emulsions of Polyethylene Terephthalate in Saturated Liquid Tetrahydrofuran. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2012, 125, 4034-4040.

Kulkarni, S. U.; Thies, M. C. Quantitative analysis of polydisperse systems via solvent-freematrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom. 2012, 26, 392-398.

Cervo, E. G.; Kulkarni, S. U.; Thies, M. C. Isolating Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAH) Oligomers via Continuous, Two-Column Supercritical Extraction. J. Supercrit. Fluids 2012, 66, 120-128.

Kulkarni, S. U.; Esguerra, D. F.; Thies, M. C. Isolating Petroleum Pitch Oligomers via Semicontinuous Supercritical Extraction. Energy Fuels 2012, 26, 2721-2726.

Kulkarni, S. U.; Räder, H. J.; Thies, M. C. The effects of molecular weight distribution and sample preparation on MALDI mass spectrometry analysis of petroleum macromolecules. Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom. 2011, 25, 2799-2808.

Burgess, W. A.; Thies, M. C. Molecular Structures for the Oligomeric Constituents of Petroleum Pitch. Carbon 2011, 49, 636-651.

Burgess, W. A.; Pittman, J. J.; Markus, R. K.; Thies, M.C. Structural Identification of the Monomeric Constituents of Petroleum Pitch. Energy Fuels 2010, 24, 4301-4311. 

Mena, S. E.; Cervo, E. G.; Crosthwaite, J. M.; Thies, M. C. Phase equilibrium measurements for the I2-H2O and I2-HI-H2O systems of the sulfur-iodine cycle using a continuous-flow apparatus. Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 2010, 35, 3347-3357.

Cervo, E. G.; Thies, M. C. Control of molecular weight distribution of petroleum pitches via multistage supercritical extraction. J. Supercrit. Fluids 2010, 51, 345-352.

Wang, Y.; Hong, L.; Tapriyal, D.; Kim, I.-C.; Paik, I.H.; Crosthwaite, J. M.; Hamilton, A. D.; Thies, M. C.; Beckman, E. J.; Enick, R. M.; Johnson, J. K. Design and Evaluation of Nonfluorous CO2-Soluble Oligomers and Polymers. J. Phys. Chem. B 2009, 113, 14971-14980.

Cristadoro, A.; Kulkarni, S. U.; Burgess, W. A.; Cervo, E. G.; Räder, H. J.; Müllen, K.; Bruce, D. A.; Thies, M. C. Structural characterization of the oligomeric constituents of petroleum pitches. Carbon 2009, 47, 2358-2370.

Tapriyal, D.; Wang, Y.; Enick, R. M.; Johnson, J. K.; Crosthwaite, J.; Thies, M. C.; Paik, I. H.; Hamilton, A. D. Poly(vinyl acetate), poly((1-O-(vinyloxy) ethyl-2,3,4,6-tetra-O-acetyl-beta-D-glucopyranoside) and amorphous poly (lactic acid) are the most CO2-soluble oxygenated hydrocarbon-based polymers. J. Supercrit. Fluids 2008, 46, 252-257.

Wu, X.; Gallego, N. C.; Contescu, C. I.; Tekinalp, H.; Bhat, V. V; Baker, F. S.; Thies, M. C.; Edie, D. D. The effect of processing conditions on microstructure of Pd-containing activated carbon fibers. Carbon 2008, 46, 54-61.

Burgess, W. A.; Zhuang, M. S.; Hu, Y., Hurt, R. H.; Thies, M. C. SAFT–LC: An Equation of State for Predicting Liquid Crystalline Phase Behavior in Carbonaceous Pitches. Ind. Eng. Chem. Res. 2007, 46, 7018-7026.

Sane, A.; Thies, M. C. Effect of Material Properties and Processing Conditions on RESS of Poly(L-lactide). J. Supercrit. Fluids 2007, 44, 134-143.

Brunner, E.; Thies, M. C.; Schneider, G. M. Fluid mixtures at high pressures: phase behavior and critical phenomena for binary mixtures of water with aromatic hydrocarbons. J. Supercrit. Fluids 2006, 39, 160-173.