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Chien M. Wai

Chien M. Wai

Emeritus Professor


Renfrew Hall 101A



Mailing Address

Department of Chemistry
875 Perimeter Dr, MS 2343
Moscow, ID 83844-2343

  • B.S. Chemistry, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China, 1960
  • Ph.D., Chemistry, University of California, Irvine, California, 1967
  • Postdoctoral, University of California, Los Angeles, California 1967-69

  • supercritical fluid extraction of metals and radionuclides
  • green techniques for nuclear waste management
  • nanomaterials synthesis and catalysis
  • supercritical fluid reactions and nanoparticles deposition

Chien Wai received his Ph.D. degree in Chemistry from the University of California, Irvine, in 1967 under the guidance of Professor F. Sherwood Rowland. After two years of post-doctoral study at UCLA, he joined the chemistry faculty at the University of Idaho in 1969. He has been teaching and doing research at the University of Idaho for 40 years. In the past four decades, Wai has mentored 40 Ph.D. students and 30 M.S. students in chemistry at the University of Idaho. He has also published 270 research papers and received 15 U.S. patents.

  • Pan, Horng-bin; Wai, Chien M. "One-step synthesis of size-tunablace rhodium nanoparticles on carbon nanotubes: A study of particle size effect on hydrogenation of xylene", J. Phys. Chem. C. 2010, 114, 11364-11369.
  • Wang, J.S.; Sementana, A. B.; Boeckl, J. J.; Brown, G. J.; Wai, C. M. "Deposition of ordered arrays of metal sulfide nanoparticles in nanostructures using supercritical fluid carbon dioxide", Langmuir 2010, 26, 1117-1123.
  • Simizu, K.; Wang, J. S.; Wai, C. M. "Application of green chemistry techniques to prepare electrocatalysts for direct methanol fuel cells", J. Phy. Chem. A. 2010, 114, 3956-3961.
  • Wang, J.S.; Sheaff, C. N.; Yoon, B.; Addleman, S.; Wai, C. M. "Extraction of uranium from aqueous solutions by using ionic liquid and supercritical carbon dioxide in conjunction", Chem. Euro. J. 2009, 15, 4458-4463.
  • Liao, Wensheng; Pan, Horng-bin; Liu, Hsin-wang, Chen, Hsing-jung; Wai, Chien M. "Kinetic study of hydrodechlorination of chlorobiphenyl with polymer-stabilized palladium nanoparticles in supercritical carbon dioxide", J. Phys. Chem. A 2009, 113, 9772-9778.
  • Knorr, Fritz J.; Hung, We-chen; Wai, Chien M. "Aromatic electron acceptors change the chirality dependence of single-walled carbon nanotube oxidation", Langmuir 2009, 25, 10417-10421.

  • Developing green extraction techniques for nuclear waste management with the nuclear industry
  • British Nuclear Fuel plc. 1995-1998; Areva 2004-2010
  • Areva has licensed Wai's supercritical fluid extraction technology from the University of Idaho for industrial recovery of enriched uranium from wasted generated by a nuclear fuel fabrication process. This is the first industrial demonstration of UI's supercritical fluid technology for nuclear waste management.

  • Visiting Faculty, 1976-1977, Institute of Geophysics, UCLA
  • Scientist in Residence, 1982-1983, Chemical Technology Division, Argonne National Lab, Argonne, Illinois
  • NORCUS Visiting Faculty, August - December 1990, Battelle Pacific Northwest Lab, Richland, Washington
  • Research Fellow, January - May 1991, Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute, Tokai Mura, Japan
  • Visiting Professor, October 2002 - January 2003, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

  • University of Idaho Annual Award for Teaching Excellence, 1990
  • University of Idaho Annual Award for Research Excellence,1991
  • S.T. Li Prize for Achievements in Science and Technology, 2004-2005
  • University of Idaho College of Science Distinguished Faculty Award, 2009

Department of Chemistry

Physical Address:
Renfrew Hall 116

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Dr, MS 2343
Moscow, ID 83844-2343

Phone: 208-885-6552

Fax: 208-885-6173


Web: Department of Chemistry