Zachary Ulissi

Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering

Doherty Hall
Carnegie Mellon University
Email: zulissi (at)

Professor Ulissi joined Carnegie Mellon University in 2017, after doing his PhD at MIT and post-doc at Stanford. His research at MIT focused on the the applications of systems engineering methods to understanding selective nanoscale carbon nanotube devices and sensors under the supervision of Michael Strano and Richard Braatz. Prof. Ulissi did his postdoctoral work at Stanford with Jens Nørskov where he worked on machine learning techniques to simplify complex catalyst reaction networks, applied to the electrochemical reduction of N2 and CO2 to fuels. The Ulissi group builds on this foundation to model, understand, and design nanoscale interfaces.

Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2015
M.A.St. in Applied Mathematics from Churchill College, University of Cambridge 2010
B.E. in Chemical Engineering, B.S. in Physics from the University of Delaware, 2009

Honors and Awards

  • Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellow (DOE CSGF), 2010-2014
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, 2009-2010

Kevin Tran

PhD Student (2021)

As a first-year PhD student with starry-eyes, I hope to combine process systems engineering, heterogeneous catalysis, density-functional theory, and machine-learning tools to design catalysts for various applications, including solar fuel generation.

But more importantly, I enjoy being with family, playing with my baby nieces, shooting pool, playing ultimate, and doing yoga.


  • Graduated from University of Delaware, 2011 (Advisor: Babatunde Ogunnaike)
  • Process Engineer (PTFE Paste Processing) from 2011-2014 at W.L. Gore & Associates
  • Process Engineer (Bioresorbable Polymer Synthesis) from 2014-2016 at W.L. Gore & Associates
Tags: PhD Student