Seong Kim

Cellulosic Biomass: Sum-Frequency-Generation Vibrational Spectroscopy of Cellulosic Biomass

Conversion of biomass such as cellulose to useful chemicals and fuels requires breaking down the structure of biomass which increases its susceptibility to subsequent enzymatic hydrolysis by cellulase enzymes. The critical physical and chemical properties that determine the susceptibility of cellulosic substrates to hydrolysis are not well understood.

We are addressing this challenge by using a state-of-the-art nonlinear laser spectroscopy that can determine the structure of celluloses present in various biomass materials. Students working in this project will have unique opportunities to learn vibrational spectroscopy and enzymatic hydrolysis of biomass.

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Contact Information

Seong Kim, Ph.D.
Professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering



The Penn State Department of Chemical Engineering, established in 1948, is recognized as one of the largest and most influential chemical engineering departments in the nation.

The department is built upon the fundamentals of academic integrity, innovation in research, and commitment to the advancement of industry.

Department of Chemical Engineering

119 Greenberg Complex

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-865-2574