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Graduate Alumni Profiles | Jason Keith

Jason Keith

Jason Keith '00

Advisor: Chia Chang and Dave Leighton
Thesis Title: Novel Reactor Designs for Pollution Reduction Utilizing Enhanced Transient Thermal Dispersion
Undergraduate School: The University of Akron

Current Position

Associate Professor at Michigan Technological University (MTU) in Houghton, MI 49931


At ND I worked with Profs. Chang and Leighton on the stability of reverse-flow reactors and light-off of automobile catalytic converters. I have extended this work at MTU to study diesel particulate trap regeneration and applications in chemical process safety.

The background in analytical and numerical modeling I recieved at ND has allowed me to diversify into new research areas. I have worked on mass transfer in drug patches (with former ND PhD grad Dan Zarraga at 3M) and on thermal and electrical conductivity in carbon / polymer composites (funded by DOE and
NSF) for fuel cell applications.

An undergraduate research-based curriculum alternative energy

I am currently working with the Keweenaw Research Center (part of MTU) on the design of a hybrid military transport (funded by ARL). I supervise a group of 30 undergraduate research students in a company-based setting to study alternative power sources for the vehicle and work on the vehicle design and fabrication.


"I came to ND looking for the training to get a faculty job and I was not dissappointed! During my final year I had three academic job offers and two industrial ones.

I was given a lot of academic freedom even while in graduate school. I was allowed to develop my teaching interests by working closely with Prof. Joan Brennecke as a "Super TA" for thermodynamics. If I could teach thermo I knew I could teach anything! My performance in this class allowed me to work on the development of a new (at the time) freshmen engineering curriculum with Profs. Jay Brockman (computer engineering) and Tom Fuja (electrical engineering). I feel this experience was the "wild card" in getting my academic job offers.

While at ND I really learned how to think, how to write, and how to study a specific problem in enormous detail. However, by studying my dissertation problem I was able to train myself to learn new things. This has allowed me to diversify into other areas, and easily collaborate with other faculty in my department. I can point to my training at ND as the key point of "intellectual explosion" in my life.

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