Ida (Xue) Chen | AIChE

Ida (Xue) Chen

R&D Fellow
Dow Inc.

Ida (Xue) Chen is a global R&D fellow in the Dow Chemical Company focusing on energy transition sustainability and human health. She has been leading the development of amine technologies from process to product, to application to enable Dow’s leading competitive position in the industry.  Additionally, as Global Innovation Leader of Dow Life Sciences, she has provided technical leadership for the growth of the DIS pharmaceutical business.

During her career at Dow, Ida has commercialized more than 20 innovation products in the markets of electronics, agriculture, construction, pharmaceutical, food and feed.  Ida led the development of a new reductive amination catalyst, “UCAMTM-F”, which will be implemented commercially in 2024 to produce millions of pounds of ethyleneamines, which play a significant role in multiple high value markets including carbon capture. She continues to develop new opportunities and technologies for amines, surfactants, solvents, and polyethylene glycols by collaborating with manufacturing, marketing, sales, quality, and Environment, Health & Safety teams to support capacity expansion, address customers’ unmet needs and grow a robust innovation pipeline.

Ida earned Master’s degrees in Pharmaceutical Engineering and Statistics, and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from University of Michigan. She has published more than 25 peer-reviewed journal papers, holds over 130 Dow internal technical reports, more than 90 U.S. patent applications with about 25 granted U.S. patents and has given numerous technical presentations or invited talks to both industry and academia. Ida was selected as an awardee for the ACS 2018 WCC Rising Star Award, the AIChE 2018 Polymers in Industry – Rising Stars Award, the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers 2019 Achievement Award, the Society of Women Engineer 2020 Emerging Leader award, the Society of Global Chinese Chemical Engineers 2022 Global Outstanding Women Scientist Award, and the ACS Organic Chemistry 2023 Mid-Career Investigator Award. Ida is a key contributor in several Dow collaborations with universities and national labs leading to patented technologies, which have been recognized for the 2022 ICIS Best Product Innovation Award Finalist, 2022 “Chemical Week” Sustainability Award Finalist, 2021 R&D 100 Award,  2022 Edison Award, and 2023 BIG business award etc.  

Ida is an industrial advisory board member of several programs funded by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy. In addition, Ida is a Senior Member of AIChE, and she has served in leadership roles in several societies, including AIChE, the American Chemical Society (ACS), and the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE). For example, from 2011 to 2019, Ida was the Technical Program Chair of the Plastics Characterization Division of SPE. From 2018 to the present, Ida has been a session chair of 11 sessions for multiple divisions at AIChE annual meetings. In 2023, she was promoted to the Area Chair of Sustainable Engineering Forum(SEF) and Process Development Division. From 2024, Ida was selected to serve to SEF as vice-Chair and Annual meeting Programming Chair. Ida has also demonstrated strong leadership by bringing in new ideas and taking initiatives to make positive changes to improve these programs. For example, in 2018 summer, she served on the technical program committee of the AIChE Process Development Symposium, where she promoted and led the development of a new session (Processing Additives). The session ranked in the top 3 among 25 sessions and attracted a more diverse audience with the addition of process chemists. In 2023, Ida was selected by AIChE to organize and chair the 2023 International Congress on Sustainability Science Engineering, where she provided guidance to the conference committee and AIChE staff in shaping the conference's description and guidelines for pertinent topics. She invited experts and national academy members from government, academia, and industry to present on this dynamic field.  In the past two years, Ida has also served on the executive committee of the Women in Chemical Engineering Community (WIC) of AIChE and the award committee of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) to advocate for the career development of women scientists and researchers.  In addition to her years of service and leadership in professional societies, Ida has contributed to education and policy in sustainability, such as AIChE Credential for Sustainability Professionals and the forum of “Gaps and Barriers for Sustainability Goals in Industry.” She is also a STEM ambassador, steering the STEM activities throughout Brazoria county, and mentoring more than 50 global junior researchers both at Dow and at universities.  Recently Ida has been invited by National Academy of Engineering to participate in Frontier of Engineering (FOE) symposium to discuss her research in sustainability, health and energy transition.