Research Assistant Professor
Chemical and Materials Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology
Dr. Rodrigo E. Teixeira obtained his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Profs. Steven Chu and Eric Shaqfeh from Stanford University. His early work combined biochemical, optic and microfluidic techniques to observe individual polymer molecules in flow. Dr. Teixeira's contributions connect molecular behavior with complex flow phenomena. These include the discoveries of polymer tumbling and molecular individualism in the entangled regime. Since then his attention has turned to two broad areas of interest:
Applied Probabilistic Inference
Complex non-linear systems such as human physiology or NASA's Space Shuttle are hard to model and even harder to predict. However, coupling sequential Monte Carlo simulation with Bayesian inference creates a sufficiently general and powerful tool to interrogate previously intractable systems. Dr. Teixeira develops and applies these techniques to solve practical problems such as mapping the energy landscapes of biological macromolecules from single-molecule measurements and diagnosis-failure of engineered systems. These algorithms are distinct from methods based on time-frequency kernel transformations (aka DSP) and offer arbitrarily rigorous handling of probabilities.
Biofuels from Biomass
Microscopic algae attains an order-of-magnitude higher energy densities than terrestrial plants and do not necessarily impact food supply. While many research centers around the world are seeking innovations that lower the cost of biomass production, processes for feedstock extraction remain both energy and cost-intensive. Dr. Teixeira has recently demonstrated a simple reaction that extracts not merely lipids (oil), but all algae feedstocks using a small fraction of the energy consumed in current best industrial cases. Process development around this new chemistry could make algae an economically viable source.
- complex fluids
- sequential Monte Carlo
- probabilistic inference
- biofuels from biomass
Honors & Awards
- 2010 First Prize, NASA Tech Briefs Create the Future Contest (International)
- 2011 Winning Solver, InnoCentive Challenge, “Vinyl Glycine Synthesis and Separation in an Ionic Liquid”
Visualizations of Molecular Fluctuations near the Critical Point of the Coil-Stretch Transition in Polymer Elongation. H. P. Babcock, R. E. Teixeira, J. S. Hur, E. S. G. Shaqfeh and S. Chu (2003). Macromolecules 36, 4544.
Non-Equilibrium Behavior of DNA Molecules in Flows of Dilute and Concentrated Solutions. E. S. G. Shaqfeh, R. E. Teixeira and S. Chu (2004). Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress on Rheology, Edited by the Korean Society of Rheology, Seoul, Korea.
Shear Thinning and Tumbling Dynamics of Single Polymers in the Flow-Gradient Plane. R. E. Teixeira, H. P. Babcock, E. S. G. Shaqfeh and S. Chu (2005). Macromolecules 38, 581. Journal's cover featured article.
Characteristic Periodic Motion of Flexible Polymers in Shear Flow. R. E. Teixeira, C. M. Schroeder, E. S. G. Shaqfeh and S. Chu (2005). Physical Review Letters 95, 018301.
Dynamics of DNA in the Flow-Gradient Plane of Steady Shear Flow: Observations and Simulations (2005). C. M. Schroeder, R. E. Teixeira, E. S. G. Shaqfeh and S. Chu. Macromolecules 38, 1967.
The Individualistic Dynamics of Entangled DNA in Solution". R. E. Teixeira, A. K. Dambal, D. H. Richter, E. S. G. Shaqfeh and S. Chu (2007). Macromolecules 40(7), 2461.
The Next Generation of Artificial Pancreas Control Algorithms. R. E. Teixeira and S. Malin (2008). Diabetes Science and Technology 2 (1), 105-112.
Rational Design of Novel Materials from Polymer Microrheology. R. E. Teixeira and R. S. Graham (2010). Proceedings of the ASME Pressure Vessels & Piping Division Conference. July 18-22th 2010, Bellevue, Washington, USA.
Energy-Efficient Extraction of Fuel and Chemical Feedstocks from Algae. R. E. Teixeira (2012). Green Chemistry 14(2), 419–427. Journal's cover featured article.