The graduate program in chemical and biochemical engineering has four major elements: engineering science, applied chemistry, biochemical engineering, and pharmaceutical engineering. Engineering science includes equilibrium and transport processes, with an emphasis on mass transfer, thermodynamics, and applied mathematics. Applied chemistry encompasses surface chemistry, applied chemical kinetics, catalysis, reactors, and synthesis and properties of polymers. Biochemical engineering deals with fermentations, biomass engineering, products of biotechnology, molecular bioengineering, and nanobiotechnology. Pharmaceutical engineering deals with drug delivery and manufacturing in a Food and Drug Administration regulatory framework.
The program combines academic instruction with practical application by stressing student projects. It encourages students to be creative and to show originality in applying basic and advanced chemical and biochemical engineering principles to solve research and design problems. Program participants develop practical applications for industrial processing and for development of novel products. At the same time, they gain a better understanding of chemical and biochemical process fundamentals. Research efforts focus on advancing the chemical engineering scientific base and on developing useful applications.
The program offers the following degrees: 1. master of science (M.S.) with thesis or nonthesis option, 2. master of engineering (M.Eng.), and 3. doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.).
1. M.S. degree candidates may elect a thesis or nonthesis option. The thesis option consists of a minimum of 30 credits: 24 course credits and 6 credits for a thesis on a research or design problem. In the nonthesis option, a candidate must complete 30 course credits and submit a critical essay. The nonthesis option is well suited to the student who has extensive research experience or full-time professional responsibilities in industry.
2. The M.Eng. is a terminal master's program in pharmaceutical engineering and science, in which a candidate completes 30 credits of coursework. The 30 credits are broken down into five specifically developed core courses in pharmaceutical engineering and five pharmaceutical electives, which can include business and legal aspects of the pharmaceutical enterprise. The program is designed to teach students the requisite skills to work in the rapidly evolving regulatory framework that determines pharmaceutical product design and manufacturing processes. The majority of courses are offered in the evenings from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. to allow working students to earn a degree while continuing daytime employment. In addition, the program now offers an online M.Eng. program with the same
curriculum and degree as obtained by students studying on campus.
3. The program for the Ph.D. normally consists of a minimum of 30 credits of coursework and 24 to 42 credits of research beyond the bachelor of science degree. The total number of credits required is 72. The coursework for the Ph.D. and M.S. degrees includes the following core courses: chemical engineering analysis; advanced transport phenomena I and II; advanced chemical engineering thermodynamics; and kinetics, catalysis, and reactor design. The master of science or master of engineering degree is available to doctoral candidates. All doctoral students are expected to defend their thesis proposal by the end of their second year in the program.
Before they complete the program, all students must give an oral presentation on their research or area of interest. There are no foreign language or residency requirements. Faculty and students in the program are involved in a broad range of research areas. Chemical engineering research involves the use of basic engineering principles such as mass, momentum, and energy balances; chemical thermodynamics and molecular simulations; chemical reactor theory; and system design to solve problems in core areas such as nanoscience and nanotechnology, transport phenomena, reaction engineering, interfacial phenomena, separations, and process systems engineering. Research in biochemical engineering includes such topics as metabolic engineering and synthetic biology, bioseparations, microbial and mammalian cell culture, drug and nucleic acid delivery, and tissue engineering. Pharmaceutical engineering research focuses on such topics as solids mixing, granular materials and particulate suspensions, powder processing, crystallization, and nanopharmaceutical formulations. Alternate fuels research includes enhanced alcohol fermentation and microbial production of fuels. Liquid-liquid extraction, supercritical extraction processes, and flow simulation in mixing processes are examples of mass transfer applications. The program hosts an NSF/industry-sponsored Engineering
Research Center on Structured Organic Particulate Systems and participates in a
National Institutes of Health-sponsored doctoral training program in
biotechnology and an NSF IGERT training program in sustainable energy.
Extensive industrial interactions are a characteristic of these programs.
Financial support is provided for both first-year and advanced doctoral students. Students participating in the research program on a sponsored basis receive an annual stipend and have their tuition remitted. Support may take the form of graduate assistantships from sponsored research, teaching assistantships, or fellowships.
A concentration within the professional science master's program is also offered, leading to the degree of master of business and science (M.B.S.), more fully described under Business and Science 137. The concentration introduces students to the essential skills needed in the chemical, petrochemical, pharmaceutical, and biotechnological industries. Rutgers' location in close proximity to pharmaceutical, health care, chemical, petrochemical, biomedical, and biotechnology companies makes the M.B.S. degree appropriate for students and practicing professionals in these industries.