Peter Psarras

Research topics:
Hydrogen Production & Storage
Carbon Capture, Utilization, & Storage
Mineral Carbonization
Ammonia Production
Trace Metal Capture
Life Cycle Analysis
Techno-economic Assessment

Peter Psarras

Research topics:
Hydrogen Production & Storage
Carbon Capture, Utilization, & Storage
Mineral Carbonization
Ammonia Production
Trace Metal Capture
Life Cycle Analysis
Techno-economic Assessment

Pete Psarras

Research Assistant Professor

About Pete

Pete received his B.A. in Chemistry from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and continued to pursue his doctoral work at Cleveland State University. There, his focus shifted early from wet inorganic chemistry to computational, ab initio modeling of systems through first principles. He used this theoretical framework to explore Fischer-Tropsch catalytic surfaces and tuning them toward lower selectivity to methane.

After receiving his doctorate in 2014, he joined Jennifer Wilcox's Clean Energy Conversions Laboratory, then at Stanford University. There he focused on the modeling of sorbents for post combustion capture as well as geographic information systems modeling of source-sink relationships in carbon capture and utilization (CCU).

Pete joined Penn as a Research Assistant Professor in January 2021 where he acts temporary PI of the CEC lab while Jen is on DOE appointment. His research involves techno-economic assessment and lifecycle analysis of technologies spanning both carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) and engineered carbon dioxide removal (CDR). These analyses inform strategic regional pathways for responsible deployment of carbon management systems.

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  1. Psarras, P., Comello, S.,  Bains, P., Charoensawadpong, P., Reichelstein, S., Wilcox, J. Carbon Capture  and Utilization in the Industrial Sector. Environmental  Science and Technology, 2017, DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.7b01723. Featured in the September 22, 2017 issue  of Science.
  2. Psarras, P., Holmes, R.,  Vishal, V., Wilcox, J. Methane and CO2 Adsorption Capacities of  Kerogen in the Eagle Ford Shale from Molecular Simulation. Accounts of Chemical Research, 2017,  50(8), 1818–1828.
  3. Psarras, P., Krutka, H.,  Fajardy, M., Zhang, Z., Liguori, S., Mac Dowell, N., Wilcox, J. Slicing the  Pie: How Big Could Carbon Dioxide Removal Be? Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Energy and Environment, 2017,  6(5).
  4. Psarras,  P., He, J., Wilcox, J. Effect of Water on the CO2 Adsorption  Capacity of Amine–Functionalized Carbon Sorbents. Industrial Engineering and Chemistry Research, 2017, 56(21),  6317–6325. 2016. Issue Cover. This paper was identified by Session Chair  William J. Koros (Georgia Institute of Technology, United States) as the Best  Presentation from the session “Novel Material for Gas Separation, Storage  & Utilization” from the 2016 ACS Fall Meeting in Philadelphia, PA.
  5. Psarras, P., Ball, D.,  Wilcox, J. Effect of Ag and Pd Promotion on CH4 Selectivity in  Fe(100) Fischer-Tropsch Catalysis. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics,  2017, 19(7), 5495–5503. 2016
  6. Psarras, P., Wilcox, J.  Molecular Simulations of Nitrogen-Doped Hierarchical Carbon Adsorbents for  Post-Combustion CO2 Capture. Physical Chemistry Chemical  Physics, 2016, 18(41),  28747–28758.
  7. Psarras, P., Ball, D.  DFT/QTAIM Analysis of the Effect of Late Transition Metal Doping on Methane  Selectivity in Fischer-Tropsch Catalysis. Computational  and Theoretical Chemistry, 2015, 1063, 1–9.
  8. Hepp, A., Kulis, M.,  Psarras, P. et. al. Novel Catalysts and Processing Technologies for  Production of Aerospace Fuels from Non-Petroleum Raw Materials, AIAA Conference Paper, 2014 
  9. Psarras, P., Anderson, R.,  Gomez-Gualdron, D., Wilcox, J. Material Consequences of Hydrogen Dissolution  in Palladium Alloys Observed from First Principles. The Journal of Physical  Chemistry C, 2019, 123(36) 22158-22171
  10. Psarras, P., Anderson, R.  Wilcox, J., Gomez-Gualdron, D. Dissociation, Dissolution, and Diffusion of  Nitrogen on VxFey­ and VxCry  Alloy Membranes Studied by First Principles. The Journal of Physical  Chemistry, C 2019, 123 (50), 30416-30426
  11. Psarras, P., He, J., et al.  Cost Analysis of Carbon Capture and Sequestration from US Natural Gas-fired  Power Plants. Environmental Science and  Technology, 2020.
  12. Psarras,  P. et al. Economics of Carbon Capture and Storage for Small Scale Hydrogen  Generation for Transit Refueling Stations. Urban Publications, 2020 Co-author (12)
  13. Kirchofer, A., Firouzi, M.,  Psarras, P., Wilcox, J. Modeling CO2 Transport and Sorption in  Carbon Slit Pores. The Journal of  Physical Chemistry C, 2017, DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcc.7b06780.
  14. Bains, P., Psarras, P.,  Wilcox, J. CO2 Capture from the Industry Sector. Progress in Energy and Combustion Science,  2017, 63, 146–172.
  15. Lee, K., Liguori, S.,  Psarras, P., Wilcox, J. Theoretical Study of Nitrogen Absorption in Metals. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C,  2017, 121(31), 17016–17028.
  16. Wilcox, J., Psarras, P.,  Liguori, S. Assessment of Reasonable Opportunities for Direct Air Capture. Environmental Research Letters, 2017,  12(6), 065001.
  17. He, J., To, J., Psarras, P.  et al. Natural Gas Sweetening Using a Tunable Polyaniline-Based Porous Carbon  with Ultrahigh Surface Area. Advanced  Energy Materials, 2016, 6(14), 1502491.
  18. Kelemen,  P., Benson, SM., Pilorgé, H., Psarras, P., Wilcox, J. An Overview of the  Status and Challenges of CO2 Storage in Minerals and Geological  Formations. Frontiers in Climate, 2019, 1(9)
  19. Baker,  SE, Psarras, P., et al., Getting to Neutral: Options for Negative Emissions  in California. Lawrence Livermore National Lab, Livermore, CA (United States)  2019
  20. McQueen,  N., Woodall, C., Psarras, P., Wilcox, J. CCS in the Iron and Steel Industry.  Carbon Capture and Storage, Royal Society of Chemistry, 2019 Cambridge (United Kingdom) 353-391
  21. Henning,  M., Thomas, AR., Triozzi, M., Psarras, P. How the Midwest Can Lead the  Hydrogen Economy: Matching Generation Assets to Distribution Markets in  Planning Hydrogen Refueling Infrastructure for Trucking and Transit. 2020, 1.
  22. Shah,  J., Gorky, F., Psarras, P., Seong, B., Gómez‐Gualdrón, D. A., Carreon, M. L. Enhancement  of the Yield of Ammonia by Hydrogen‐Sink Effect during Plasma Catalysis. ChemCatChem,  2020, 12 (4), 1200-1211
  23. McQueen,  N., Psarras, P., et al. Cost Analysis of Direct Air Capture and Sequestration  Coupled to Low-Carbon Thermal Energy in the US. Environmental Science and Technology, 2020.
  24. Pilorgé,  H., McQueen, N., Maynard, DH., Psarras, P., et al. Cost Analysis of Carbon  Capture and Sequestration of Process Emissions from the US Industrial Sector, Environmental Science and  Technology, 2020.
  25. McQueen,  N., Desmond, MJ., Socolow, RH., Psarras, P., Wilcox, J. Natural Gas versus  Electricity for Solvent-Based Direct Air Capture. Frontiers in Climate, 2020.

Professional Service

University of Michigan Global CO­­2 Initiative –  Faculty Affiliate
2021 - present

Judge, XPRIZE Carbon Removal
2021 - 2025

ACS Cleveland, Chair-Elect
2020 - 2021

Associate Editor, Frontiers Negative Emissions Technologies
2019 - present

Judge, NRG/Cosia Carbon XPrize – CO2  Utilization Contest
2016 - 2021

Referee, Energy and Fuels (x6), Journal  of Hazardous Materials (x1), International  Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control (x4)
2015 - 2016

President, Vice-President, and Treasurer,  Graduate Student Interdisciplinary Research Club
2010 - 2014

Graduate Teaching Assistant Mentor
2012 - 2014

Undergraduate Chemistry Tutoring
2009 - 2014