Kirk J Ziegler completed his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. He then received the Enterprise Ireland Postdoctoral Fellowship and conducted research at University College Cork followed by postdoctoral research at Rice University with Nobel Laureate Richard E. Smalley. In 2005, Prof. Ziegler joined the faculty in the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Florida. Prof. Ziegler has taught Process Thermodynamics, Phase and Chemical Equilibria, Separations, Materials in Chemical Engineering, and electives on nanotechnology. Over the past several years, he has also conducted review sessions for the College of Engineering on Thermodynamics for the FE exam.
Prof. Ziegler’s research has focused on understanding the role of interfaces in nanomaterial processes and applications. His group primarily works with one-dimensional nanostructures, such as single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) and vertical arrays of nanowires. His work on SWCNTs has focused on understanding the effect of surfactant-nanotube interactions on dispersion and separation processes. His group has discovered methods to reorganize surfactant structures and establish unique solvent microenvironments that interface SWCNTs. Prof. Ziegler’s work on nanowire arrays has applications in energy-related devices, which require high surface area to maximize energy generation or storage. Prof. Ziegler has been a member of the executive board of the Nanoscale Science & Engineering Forum (NSEF) within the American Institute of Chemical Engineers since 2007. In January 2013, he became the chair of NSEF.