Frank A. Liddell, Jr. Centennial Fellowship in Chemical Engineering
Associate Professor Chemical Engineering
Dr. Michael Baldea is Associate Professor and Frank A. Liddell, Jr. Centennial Fellow in the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin, where he also serves as Undergraduate Advisor overseeing the entire undergraduate program. He is also a core faculty member in UT’s Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences. He obtained his Diploma and M.Sc. in Chemical Engineering from "Babes-Bolyai" University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, and a doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota. Prior to joining The University of Texas, he held industrial research positions with Praxair Technology Center in Tonawanda, NY and GE Global Research in Niskayuna, NY. He has received several research and service awards and was recognized with best referee awards by the Journal of Process Control and Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research. His research covers topics in nonlinear dynamics, optimization and control, with applications to process and energy systems, areas in which he has co-authored/edited three books, four book chapters and over 170 peer-reviewed journal and conference articles. Dr. Baldea serves on the advisory boards of several commercial and non-profit entities, and is a Senior Editor for the Journal of Process Control, a Subject Editor for Chemical Engineering Research and Design, and a member of the editorial boards of other leading technical journals.
Research in the Baldea group addresses theoretical challenges and problems of practical importance in the area of process and energy systems engineering. Concepts from multiple fields – nonlinear systems, control, optimization, data analytics and numerical methods – are used to develop new theory, algorithms and software tools. The work follows three major thrusts: i) integrated decision-making in the chemical and energy supply chains, ii) process control, monitoring and optimizing process performance, and iii) process integration and intensification. Important applications include i) vertical integration of production planning, scheduling and process control decisions (with a particular focus on chemical plants that interact with the electric grid and can provide ancillary services), ii) quantifying plant-model mismatch for model-based controllers, iii) process data visualization, iv) equation-oriented process simulation and optimization and, v) design, control and operation of intensified processes. The research is highly collaborative and has a strong translational component; the latter led to implement and validate several results on industrial test beds.