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Washington State University
The Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering

Faculty & Staff

Su Ha

2023 Su Ha Headshot

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

Energy conversions, Catalysis, and Electrochemistry

Dr. Ha’s Website

Office: 105F & 215 Wegner Hall đź“ž509-335-6256

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

Graduate Students

Ali Ahmad
Jonghyun Han
Madeline McCanna
Raul Pelaez Gracia

Research Interests

My research group’s general interests lie in the area of energy conversions and generations. Among them, we especially focus on generating hydrogen gas via thermochemical and electrochemical reforming processes, CO2 capture and utilization, developing fuel cells that directly convert the chemical energy of small organic molecules (e.g., formic acid and ethanol) 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 fuel reforming systems.In hydrogen generation research, the objective is to efficiently generate hydrogen gas from bio-fuels and logistic fuels by synthesizing novel nanoparticle catalysts for use in hydrogen fuel cells. In order to increase the reforming performances, our group investigates the effect of electric fields on heterogeneous catalysis and develops electrochemical reforming technology.

In CO2 capture and utilization, the objective is to convert CO2 into value-added products or energy vectors via thermochemical and electrochemical conversion processes.

In fuel cell researches, my research group has been developing fuel cells that produce electrical power from various fuels including formic acid, formate, ethanol, gasoline, etc. 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 nanomaterials which produce electric power.

  • Developing coke resistant, sulfur tolerant, and efficient cobalt and molybdenum-based reforming catalysts for hydrogen production.
  • Developing a coke-resistant and sulfur tolerant 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).
  • Developing electric-field-assisted thermochemical reformers for the hydrogen production
  • Developing electrochemical aqueous-phase reformers for the pure and compressed hydrogen production

Biographical Information

Su Ha is a professor in the Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering. He is also a director for the O.H. Reaugh Laboratory for Oil and Gas Processing Research at WSU. He joined the school in 2005 as an assistant professor after completing his Ph.D. degree in chemical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has published over 70 publications in the research areas of energy generations from alternative fuels. His researches have been cited over 5,000 times with h-index of 30. In 2014, he was named as Highly Cited Researcher by Thomson Reuters.

Selected Publications

    1. Wang, W., Hwang, S., Kim. T., Ha, S., Scudiero, L. Study of Carbon Supported CuPd Alloy Nanoparticles with Pd-Rich Surface for the Electrochemical Formate Oxidation and CO2 Reductio. Electrochimica Acta (2021) 387, pp. 138531.
    2. Gray, J.; Agarwal, K.; Cho, J.; Yang, J.; Ha, S.Estimating surface electric fields using reactive formic acid probes and SEM image brightness analysis. Chemical Engineering Journal (2020) 402, Article 125640.
    3. Zhao, K.; Cheng, G.; Hu, S.; Ha, S.; Norton, M.G.; Chen, M.; Chen, D.C.; Xu, Q.; Kim, B.H. NiMo-calcium-doped ceria catalysts for inert-substrate-supported tubular solid oxide fuel cells running on isooctane. International Journal of Hydrogen (2020) 45, pp. 29367-29378.
    4. Elharati, M.A.; Dewa, M.; Bkour, Q.; Hussain, A.M.; Miura, Y.; Dong, S.; Fukuyama, Y.; Dale, N.; Marin-Flores, O.G.; Ha, S. Internal Reforming Solid Oxide Fuel Cell System Operating under Direct Ethanol Feed Condition. Energy Technology (2020) 8, Article 2000350.
    5. Gray, J.; Burnett, D.; Sundheim, M.D.; Izzo, J.R.; Ha, S. Steam Reforming of Tetrahydrodicyclopentadiene over Socketed Nickel Perovskite Catalysts with an Applied Electric Field. Energy Technology (2020) 8, Article 2000172.
    6. Bkour, Q.; Che, F.; Lee, K.M.; Zhou, C.; Akter, N.; Boscoboinik, J.A.; Zhao, K.; Gray, J.; Saunders, S.R.; Norton, M.G.; McEwen, J.S.; Kim, T.; Ha, S. Enhancing the partial oxidation of gasoline with Mo-doped Ni catalysts for SOFC applications: An integrated experimental and DFT study. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2020) 266, Article 118626.
    7. Gray, J.; Kang, S.W.; Yang, J.; Kruse, N.; McEwen, J.S.; Park, J.C.; Ha, S. Unravelling the reaction mechanism of gas-phase formic acid decomposition on highly dispersed Mo2C nanoparticles supported on graphene flakes. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2020) 264, Article 118478.
    8. Gray, J.; Che, F.; McEwen, J.S.; Ha, S. Field-assisted suppression of coke in the methane steam reforming reaction. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2020) 260, Article 118132.
    9. Bkour, Q.; Marin-Flores, O.G.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. A highly active and stable bimetallic Ni-Mo2C catalyst for a partial oxidation of jet fuel. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2019) 245, pp. 613-622.
    10. Bkour, Q.; Im, K.; Marin-Flores, O.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S.; Kim, J. Application of Ti-doped MoO2 microspheres prepared by spray pyrolysis to partial oxidation of n-dodecane. Applied Catalysis A: General (2019) 553, pp. 74-81.
    11. Zhao, K.; Hou, X.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Application of a NiMo-Ce0.5Zr0.5O2-d catalyst for solid oxide fuel cells running on gasoline. Journal of Power Sources (2019) 435, pp. Article 226732.
    12. Garcia-Perez, T.; Hu, S.; Wee, Y.; Scudiero, L.; Hoffstater, C.; Kim, J.; Ha, S. Effect of Surface and Bulk Properties of Mesoporous Carbons on the Electrochemical Behavior of GOx Nanocomposites. FRONTIERS IN CHEMISTRY (2019) 7 Article 84.
    13. Zhang, X.; Dong, P.; Lee, J.-I.; Gray, J. T.; Cha, Y.-H.; Ha, S.; Song, M.-K. Enhanced cycling performance of rechargeable LiO2 batteries via LiOH formation and decomposition using high performance MOF-74@CNTs hybrid catalysts. ENERGY STORAGE MATERIALS (2019) 17, pp. 167-177.
    14. Hu, H.; Islam, T.; Kostyukova, A. S.; Ha, S.; Gupta, S. From Battery Enabled to Natural Harvesting: Enzymatic BioFuel Cell Assisted Integrated Analog Front-End in 130nm CMOS for Long-Term Monitoring. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON CIRCUITS AND SYSTEMS I-REGULAR PAPERS (2019) 66, pp. 534-545.
    15. Hu, S.; Che, F.; Khorasani, B.; Jeon, M.; Yoon, C. W.; McEwen, J.-S.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S. Improving the electrochemical oxidation of formic acid by tuning the electronic properties of Pd-based bimetallic nanoparticles. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2019) 254, pp. 685-692.
    16. Zhao, K.; Bkour, Q.; Kim, B.-H.; Norton, M. G.; Ha, S. NiMo-Ceria-Zirconia Catalyst for Inert-Substrate-Supported Tubular Solid Oxide Fuel Cells Running on Model Gasoline. Energy Technology (2019) 7, pp. 48-52.
    17. Hou, X.; Zhao, K.; Marina, O.A.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. NiMo-ceria-zirconia-based anode for solid oxide fuel cells operating on gasoline surrogate. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental (2019) 242, pp. 31-39.
    18. Bkour, Q.; Cuba-Torres, C.M.; Marin-Flores, O.G.; Tripathi, S.; Ravishankar, N.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Mechanistic study of the reduction of MoO2 to Mo2C under methane pulse conditions. Journal of Materials Science (2018) 53, pp. 12816-12827.
    19. Zhao, K.; Kim, B.H.; Norton, M.G.; Ha, S. Cathode Optimization for an Inert-Substrate-Supported Tubular Solid Oxide Fuel Cell. Frontiers in Energy Research (2018) 6.
    20. Che, F.; Gray, J.; Ha, S.; Kruse, N.; Scott, S.; McEwen, J.S. Elucidating the Roles of Electric Fields in Catalysis: A Perspective. ACS Catalysis (2018) 8, pp. 5153-5174.
    21. Zhao, K.; Bkour, Q.; Hou, X.; Kang, S.W.; Park, J.C.; Norton, M.G.; Yang, J.I.; Ha, S. Reverse water gas shift reaction over CuFe/Al2O3 catalyst in solid oxide electrolysis cell. Chemical Engineering Journal (2018) 336, pp. 20-27.
    22. Muneeb, O.; Estrada, J.; Tran, T.; Hu, S.; Khorasani, B.; Fry-Petit, A.; Scudiero, L.; Ha, S.; Haan, J.L. Improved Electrochemical Oxidation of Polyalcohols in Alkaline Media on Palladium-Nickel Catalysts. CHEMISTRYSELECT (2017) 2, PP. 9261-9266.
    23. Zhang, X.J.; Zhao, Y.; Hu, S.; Gliege, M.E.; Liu, Y.M.; Liu, R.J.; Scudiero, L.; Hu, Y.Q.; Ha, S. Electrochemical Reduction of Carbon Dioxide to Formic Acid in Ionic Liquid [Emim][N(CN)(2)]/Water System. Electrochimica Acta (2017) 247, pp. 281-287.
    24. Che, F.; Ha, S.; McEwen, J.S. Catalytic Reaction Rates Controlled by Metal Oxidation State: C-H Bond Cleavage in Methane over Nickel-Based Catalysts. Angewandte Chemie-International Edition (2017) 56, pp. 3557-3561.
    25. Choi, H.; Heo, J.H.; Ha, S.; Kwon, B.W.; Yoon, S.P.; Han, J.; Kim, W.S.; Im, S.H.; Kim, J. Facile scalable synthesis of MoO2 nanoparticles by new solvothermal cracking process and their application to hole transporting layer for CH3NH3PbI3 planar perovskite solar cells. Chemical Engineering Journal (2017) 310, pp. 179-186.
    26. Che, F.; Ha, S.; McEwen, J.S. Hydrogen Oxidation and Water Dissociation over an Oxygen-Enriched Ni/YSZ Electrode in the Presence of an Electric Field: A First-Principles-Based Microkinetic Model. Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research (2017) 56, pp. 1201-1213.
    27. Kim, J.H.; Hong, S.G.; Wee, Y.H.; Hu, S.; Kwon, Y.; Ha, S.; Kim, J. Enzyme precipitate coating of pyranose oxidase on carbon nanotubes and their electrochemical applications. Biosensors & Bioelectronics (2017) 87, pp. 365-372.
    28. Han, B.; Zhao, K.; Hou, X.; Kim, D.J.; Kim, B.H.; Ha, S.; Norton, M.G.; Xu, Q.; Ahn, B.G. Ni-(Ce0.8-xTix)Sm0.2O2-d anode for low temperature solid oxide fuel cells running on dry methane fuel. Journal of Power Sources (2017) 338, pp. 1-8.
    29. Kim, B.C. Lee, I.; Kwon, S.J.; Wee, Y.; Kwon, K.Y.; Jeon, C.; An, H.J.; Jung, H.T.; Ha, S.; Dordick, J.S.; Kim, J. Fabrication of enzyme-based coatings on intact multi-walled carbon nanotubes as highly effective electrodes in biofuel cells. Scientific Reports (2017) 7, pp. 40202.
    30. Che, F.; Gray, J.; Ha, S.; McEwen, J.S. Improving Ni Catalysts Using Electric Fields: A DFT and Experimental Study of the Methane Steam Reforming Reaction. ACS Catalysis (2017) 7, pp. 551-562.

Research Highlights

A graphic showing a solid oxide fuel cell. Our internal reforming Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) research is highlighted in Energy Technology.

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.