What are CHEN and CBEN?

Chemical engineering (CHEN) is a broad and versatile discipline which deals with the development and application of processes that change materials either chemically or physically. Chemical engineers invent, design, and operate manufacturing processes that involve the chemical transformation of raw materials into products that are of value to mankind.

Such products require purification and packaging for distribution, and raw materials require proper handling and preparation. Since such processes are often energy intensive, involve hazardous materials, and produce byproducts and wastes, chemical engineers also work in energy management, safety, pollution prevention, and waste treatment and disposal.

The advance of modern technology depends on the production of specialized chemicals and materials based on them, economically and with minimal adverse impact on the environment. This essential and exciting activity is what CHEN is all about.

Where do CHENs work?

As a chemical engineer you can expect to work in manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, design and construction, pulp and paper, petrochemicals, food processing, specialty chemicals, microelectronics, electronic and advanced materials, polymers, business services, biotechnology, and environmental health and safety industries, among others.

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In chemical and biological engineering (CBEN), concepts from the biological sciences are used to inspire and guide the development and production of chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and advanced materials. Efficient, economical manufacture of these items requires engineers who are well-versed not only in chemical engineering but also in the fundamentals of biology.

CBEN student in the labCBEN retains a core feature that has traditionally distinguished chemical engineering from the other engineering disciplines: its focus on chemical transformation, creating new products through chemical reactions between raw materials or intermediates. Development of pharmaceuticals and creation of new advanced materials by tissue engineering in particular pose additional constraints in terms of creating products that are both safe and efficacious for human use.

Why a degree in CBEN?

With a degree in CBEN you will develop an affinity and synergy within the fields of molecular and cellular biology including:
  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Tissue Engineering and
  • Medicine

Students can expect training in the traditional field of chemical engineering with a focus on:
  • Chemical Transformations
  • Chemical Separations
  • Biotechnology
  • Metabolic Engineering
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences

Students must master additional skills in biology, medicine, bioseparations, biological laboratory skills, and biological transformations.