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The Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering

Faculty & Staff

Su Ha

Su Ha Headshot 2019

Su Ha, Ph.D.
Professor / Director, O.H. Reaugh Laboratory for Oil and Gas Research

Energy generations from alternative fuels

Dr. Ha’s Website

Office: 215 Wegner Hall 📞509-335-3786

Lab: 219, 223, 227 & 231 Wegner Hall

The Gene and Linda Voiland
School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering
1505 Stadium Way, Room 105
P.O. Box 646515
Washington State University
Pullman, WA 99164-6515

Post-Graduate Scholars

O. Marin-Flores (13-Present)

Graduate Students

Mohamed Elharati
Wei-Jyun Wang
Xianghui Zhang

Research Interests

My research group’s general interests lie in the area of energy generations from alternative fuels in a variety of ways. Among them, we especially focus on generating hydrogen gas from bio-fuels and abundant natural gases, developing fuel cells that directly convert the chemical energy of small organic molecules (e.g., formic acid) or logistic fuels (e.g., gasoline and biodiesel) to electrical power, working with natural enzymes to produce electrical power from sugars, and developing electric field assisted methane reforming and water-gas-shift reactor systems.

In hydrogen generation research, the objective is to efficiently generate hydrogen gas from bio-ethanol and natural gases by synthesizing novel nanoparticle catalysts for use in hydrogen fuel cells. If they can become viable and less costly, hydrogen fuel cells could be hugely more efficient than internal combustion engines for cars, and the only waste product is water. In order to increase the reforming performances, our group also investigates the effect of electric fields on heterogeneous catalysis.

In liquid organic fuel cell research, my research group has been developing fuel cells that produce electrical power from the simple organic molecules, creating a prototype which successfully ran a cell phone. Using these simple liquid organic molecules allows for developing portable fuel cells that permit people to use laptops for days rather than hours without being connected to ac power. My group is also working to use natural enzymes to catalyze reactions to get energy from natural fuel, such as glucose. The enzymes are collected and immobilized on tiny carbon nanotubes which produce electric power. By using enzymes at the nano-scale, my group hopes to increase efficiency and reduce the costs of producing energy. ➡ See Dr. Ha’s “Research Highlight” page under Catalysis & Kinetics research

  • Developing coke resistant, sulfur tolerant and efficient cobalt and molybdenum based reforming catalysts for hydrogen production.
  • Developing a coke resistant and sulfer tolerand anode for fuel flexible solid oxide fuel cells.
  • Developing efficient and cost effective catalysts for low temperature fuel cells.
  • Developing high performing and stable nanobiocatalysts by immobilizing enzymes on various nanomaterials including carbon nanotube (CNT).

Biographical Information

Dr. Ha received degrees in chemical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in 2005. He was appointed an assistant professor at the Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering at Washington State University (WSU) in 2005. He currently runs the O.H. Reaugh Laboratory for Oil and Gas Processing Research at WSU.

Selected Publications

  1. Hu, S.; Fabian, M.; Noborikawa, J.; Haan, J.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S. Carbon supported Pd-basedbimetallic and trimetallic catalyst for formic acid electrochemical oxidation. Applied Catalysis B (2015), 180, pp. 758–765.
  2. Shah, S.; Marin-Flores, O.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Molybdenum carbide supported nickel–molybdenum alloys for synthesis gas production via partial oxidation of surrogate biodiesel. Journal of Power Sources (2015), 294, pp. 530–536.
  3. Kwon, B.; Hu, S.; He, Q.; Marin-Flores, O.; Oh, C.H.; Yoon, S.P.; Kim, J.; Breit, J.; Scudiero, L.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Nickel-based anode with microstructured molybdenum dioxide internal reformer for liquid hydrocarbon-fueled solid oxide fuel cells. Applied Catalysis B (2015), 179, pp. 439–444.
  4. Cuba-Torres, C.; Marin-Flores, O.; Owen, C.; Wang, Z.; Garcia-Perez, M.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Catalytic partial oxidation of biodiesel surrogate over molybdenum dioxide. Fuel (2015), 146, pp. 132–137.
  5. He, Q., Marin-Flores, O.; Hu, S.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S.; Norton, M.G. Kinetics of hydrogen reduction of titanium-doped molybdenum dioxide. Scripta Materialia (2015), 100, pp. 55–58.
  6. Kim, J.H.; Jun, S.A.; Kwon, Y.; Ha, S.; Sang, B.; Kim, J.B. Enhanced electrochemical sensitivity of enzyme precipitate coating (EPC)-based glucose oxidase biosensors with increased free CNT loadings. Bioelectrochemistry (2015), 101, pp. 114–119.
  7. Hou, X.; Marin-Flores, O.; Kwon, B.; Kim, J. Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Gasoline-fueled solid oxide fuel cell with high power density. Journal of Power Sources (2014), 268, pp. 546–549.
  8. He, Q., Marin-Flores, O.; Hu, S.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S.; Norton, M.G. Effect of titanium doping on the structure and reducibility of nanoparticle molybdenum dioxide. Journal of Nanoparticle Research (2014), 16, pp. 2385–2397.
  9. Kwon, B.; Hu, S.; Marin-Flores, O.; Norton, M.G.; Kim, J.; Scudiero, L.; Breit, J.; Ha, S. High Performance Molybdenum Dioxide-Based Anode for Dodecane-Fueled SOFCs with a Maximum Power Density of 2 W cm-2 at 750°C. Energy Technology (2014), 2 (5), pp. 425–430.
  10. Che, F.; Zhang, R.; Hensley, S.; Ha, S.; McEwen, J.S. Decomposition of Methyl Species on a Ni(211) surface: Investigations of the Electric Field Influence. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces (2014), 4, pp. 4020–4035.
  11. Sadiki, A.; Vo, P.; Hu, S.; Copenhaver, T.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S. Haan, J. Increased Electrochemical Oxidation Rate of Alcohols in Alkaline Media on Palladium Surfaces Electrochemically Modified by Antimony, Lead, and Tin. Electrochimica Acta (2014), 139, pp. 302–307.
  12. Noborikawa, J.; Lau, J.; Ta, J.; Hu, S.; Scudiero, L.; Derekhshan, S.; Ha, S.; Haan, J. Palladium-Copper Electrocatalyst for Promotion of Oxidation of Formate, Ethanol, and 2 Propanol in Alkaline Media. Electrochimica Acta (2014), 137, pp. 654–660.
  13. Bahrami, J.; Gavin, P.; Bliesner, R.; Ha, S.; Pedrow, P.; Mehrizi-Sani A.; Leachman, J. Effect of Orthohydrogen-Parahydrogen Composition on Performance of a Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy (2014), 39, pp. 14955–14958.
  14. Kim, R.E.; Hong, S.G.; Ha, S.; Kim, J.B. Enzyme adsorption, precipitation and crosslinking of glucose oxidase and laccase on polyaniline nanofibers for highly stable enzymatic biofuel cells. Enzyme and Microbial Technology (2014), 66, pp. 35–41.

Research Highlights

Angewande Chemie cover, 2017-56/13

The collaborative research done between the Ha group and the McEwen group is highlighted in Angewandte Chemie. See Murrow News 8 report and the report on WSU News.

Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research journal cover, February 8, 2017 - 56/5

The collaborative research done between the Ha group and the McEwen group is highlighted in I&EC. See virtual issue of the best presentations at the 251 ACS meeting.

Image of airplane with figure overlay

Dr. Ha has developed a MoO2-based anode with an interconnecting network of pores and exhibiting both excellent ion and electron transfer, which was successfully operated in a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) by directly feeding a jet-A fuel surrogate. Read more about Dr. Ha’s catalysis research