Poornima Padmanabhan Headshot

Poornima Padmanabhan

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemical Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering
Program Faculty, School of Mathematical Sciences

Office Location

Poornima Padmanabhan

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemical Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering
Program Faculty, School of Mathematical Sciences

Education

B.Tech., Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (India); Ph.D., Cornell University

Bio

Dr. Poornima Padmanabhan received her bachelor’s degree (B. Tech.) in Chemical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Madras located in India. She received her Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2016 working in the area of statistical mechanics and thermodynamics with a focus on modeling polymer self-assembly for various applications. Following her Ph.D., she worked as a postdoctoral associate at Cornell University to study colloidal gels with a view to understanding the underlying microstructural evolution leading to the macroscopic collapse of gels under gravity. She has presented her past work at American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and American Physical Society (APS) annual meetings.

Dr. Padmanabhan is also actively involved in increasing the presence of women in science by promoting professional development of the graduate student and postdoctoral community at Cornell and engaging high school girls and their families through outreach events in upstate NY. She received an Alice H. Cook and Constance E. Cook Recognition Award for efforts in improving climate for women at Cornell University.


Personal Links

Currently Teaching

CHME-589
3 Credits
Topics and subject areas that are not regularly offered are provided under this course. Such courses are offered in a normal format; that is, regularly scheduled class sessions with an instructor. The level of complexity is commensurate with an upper-level undergraduate technical course.
CHME-689
3 Credits
Topics and subject areas that are not regularly offered are provided under this course. Such courses are offered in a normal format; that is, regularly scheduled class sessions with an instructor. The level of complexity is commensurate with an upper-level undergraduate technical course.
CHME-340
4 Credits
The fundamentals of chemical kinetics are integrated with the concepts of mass and energy conservation, from both a macroscopic and microscopic perspective, to develop models that describe the performance of chemical reactors. Topics include mass action kinetics and absolute rate theory, series and parallel reaction systems, and the mathematical modeling of various reactor configurations. The conceptual framework and tools are developed to understand and design chemical reactor processes and to interpret experimental data obtained on a laboratory scale to design pilot scale and full scale manufacturing processes.
CHME-511
3 Credits
This course draws a connection between molecular scale phenomena and concepts in undergraduate chemical engineering thermodynamics. The ideal gas law is derived from first principles, entropy is defined from a molecular perspective, and chemical potential (and fugacity) is viewed as a derivative of the partition function rather than an “ad-hoc” correction parameter for vapor-liquid equilibrium. Using the thermodynamic ensembles and multivariable calculus, a unified approach to convert between all thermodynamic variables is presented. A special emphasis is provided on the phase separation of gas-mixtures and liquid-mixtures to enable the design of solvents for applications.
CHME-182
1 Credits
This course examines how chemical engineering analysis can be applied to address some of society’s current and future challenges. Particular attention is focused on the size and scale of a system and its affect on the engineering constraints and the ultimate solution of problems. The course enables students to recognize that the processes and equipment that chemical engineers design to solve local problems affect the broader problems that society faces, such as the supply of energy and preservation of the environment. The course demonstrates the power of the system balance as an essential tool for engineering analysis, and provides students with some elementary training in its use.
CHME-611
3 Credits
This course draws a connection between molecular scale phenomena and concepts in undergraduate chemical engineering thermodynamics. The ideal gas law is derived from first principles, entropy is defined from a molecular perspective, and chemical potential (and fugacity) is viewed as a derivative of the partition function rather than an “ad-hoc” correction parameter for vapor-liquid equilibrium. Using the thermodynamic ensembles and multivariable calculus, a unified approach to convert between all thermodynamic variables is presented. A special emphasis is provided on the phase separation of gas-mixtures and liquid-mixtures to enable the design of solvents for applications.
MTSE-777
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a capstone project using research facilities available inside or outside of RIT.
MTSE-799
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for a masters-level student.

Select Scholarship

Journal Paper
Padmanabhan, Poornima and Roseanna Zia. "Gravitational Collapse of Colloidal gels: Non-equilibrium Phase Separation Driven by Osmotic Pressure." Soft Matter 14. (2018): 3265-3287. Web.