Kristen Fichthorn

Kristen Fichthorn

Merrell Fenske Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Physics
Penn State University

Kristen Fichthorn is the Merrell Fenske Professor of Chemical Engineering and a Professor of Physics at the Pennsylvania State University. She received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1985 and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan in 1989. She spent one year as an IBM Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of California at Santa Barbara before joining the Department of Chemical Engineering at Penn State as an Assistant Professor in 1990.
Professor Fichthorn’s research is primarily in multiscale simulation of fluid-solid interfaces, in which she applies theoretical techniques ranging from quantum density functional theory to molecular dynamics, Monte Carlo methods, and continuum theories to a diverse array of applications in nanoscale materials, thin-film and crystal growth, colloidal assembly, and wetting. In addition to being recognized by Penn State for her outstanding research and teaching, she is the recipient of the NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award (1990), an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship (1998), she is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (2011), and a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (2017).