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John C. Berg

Faculty Photo

Harry & Metta Rehnberg Chair
Chemical Engineering


  • Ph.D., University of California (Berkeley), 1964
  • B.S., Carnegie Institute of Technology, 1960

Research Statement

Interfacial Phenomena; Surface and Colloid Science

The behavior of many systems, including thin films, fibers, filaments, jets, drops, bubbles, foams, dispersions, and porous media, may be dominated by the properties of their interfaces. We are examining a variety of problems involving interfacial properties and their consequences. For example, we are investigating the interaction between liquids and solid surfaces as they are influenced by acid-base interactions and are applying such understanding to the improvement of contact adhesion, mechanical properties of new composite materials and the performance of absorbent products. We are examining strategies for conversion from solvent-based to water-based coating formulations, requiring new understanding of the mechanisms of electro-steric stabilization in complex colloidal media. Both the kinetics and morphology of floc formation are being studied. We are also investigating improved methods for recycling of mixed paper wastes, including both flotation de-inking and liquid-bridge agglomeration. We are examining the dynamic properties of multicomponent liquids and their interaction with print media in a study of ink-jet printing. The underlying science of interfaces and colloids is leading to the creation of new materials, new strategies for environmental control, and new technologies for industrial production. Background material in interfacial and colloid science is made available in a variety of course offerings in the department.

Honors & awards

  • American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Fellow, 1999