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Personal profile


  • Ph.D., Department of Chemical Engineering, Monash University, Australia (2007-2011).
  • Research scientist (postgraduate), CSIRO, Melbourne, Australia (2008-2010)
  • Research specialist, Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science, the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, United States (2010-2011)
  • B.Eng. in Chemical Engineering and B. Ec. in International Economics and Trade, Harbin Engineering University, China (2002-2006)


Dr Harvey Yi Huang is currently a Reader in Chemical Engineering at the University of Edinburgh (UoE). He received a dual degree (B.Eng. and B.Ec.) from Harbin Engineering University in China and PhD (Chemical Engineering) from the Monash University in Australia. During his PhD study, he worked at Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIRO) as a research scientist (2008-2010) and also visited the Tsapatsis Research Group at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (US) as a research specialist (2010-2011). Prior to joining UoE as a faculty member, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, US.
Currently, he leads a research team at UoE, studying advanced adsorption and membrane separation, novel nanofabrication methods, and nanotechnology to address some of the most challenging issues in many industrial processes, e.g.  high-performance mixture separation (high flux, high selectivity), high capacity gas storage, and clean water supply.


Research Interests

All across the world, people are facing a wealth of new and challenging problems, particularly energy and environmental issues. For example, billions of tons of annual CO2 emissions are the direct result of fossil fuel combustion to generate electricity. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. emitted 6.1 billion metric tons of CO2 to the atmosphere in 2007. Producing clean energy from abundant sources, such as coal, will require a massive infrastructure and highly efficient capture technologies to curb CO2 emissions. In addition to its environmental impact, CO2 also reduces the heating value of the CH4 gas streams in power plants and causes corrosion in pipes and equipment. To minimize the impact of CO2 on the environment, the design of high-performance separation materials and technologies for efficient carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) is urgent and essential. My research in this area is creating novel nanostructured (membrane) materials with enhanced transport properties by ordering their nano-architectures via different methods and meanwhile exploring their novel and energy-sustainable scale up.

Enhanced demand for fuels worldwide not only decreased world oil reserves but also increased climate concerns about the use of fossil-based fuel. To address these energy and environmental problems, efforts have been made towards improved utilization of fossil fuels and the development of renewable energy production. With the abundant availability and carbon-neutral nature, biomass is recognized as one of the most promising renewable energy resources. A number of transportation fuels can be produced from biomass, helping to alleviate demand for petroleum products and improve the greenhouse gas emissions profile of the transportation sector. Traditional catalysts suffer from many undesirable properties, such as small accessible pore size, low hydrothermal stability, and less controllable active sites. Among these, low hydrothermal stability at upgrading temperatures greatly hinders the conversion of lignocellulosic biomass to biofuel. My research is focused on synthesizing a new class of ultra-stable catalysts with tunable nanostructure and functionalities for efficient bio oil upgrading, with special emphasis on the study of their hydrothermal stability.

Oil pollution is another serious global issue because of the large amounts of oily wastewater produced by petrochemical and other industries, as well as by frequent off-shore oil-spill accidents. Regulations enacted by the EPA limit the discharge of oil and grease in their effluents to a maximum of 42 mg/L for any one day and a daily average lower than 26 mg/L for 30 consecutive days. Therefore, it is in great need to develop effective techniques to treat oil-polluted wastewater at such low oil/grease concentrations in order to satisfy the stringent governmental limitations and preserve the environment. Membrane techniques have been widely employed for water purification and are very effective in separating stabilized oil emulsions-especially for removing oil droplets. However, current membranes suffer from membrane fouling both on surfaces and in internal structures, which significantly limits their service time and degrades separation performance in practical operations. My research in this field attempts to adopt the concept of biomimetic hierarchical roughness in membrane design for creating superoleophobic membrane surfaces from a vast pool of candidate materials, such as zeolites, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), and single-layered graphene oxide. My research also focuses on the development of facile, low-cost preparation techniques which would open a completely new direction for the membrane society. Further investigation on scaling-up production/commercialization will be pursued.


  • Chemical Reaction Engineering 4/MSc (CHEE10008/PGEE10025) - Course Organiser

  • Chemical Engineering Design: Projects 4 (CHEE10002) - Project Supervision

  • Chemical Engineering Laboratory 3 (CHEE09016) - Course Instructor
  • Chemical Engineering Study Project 4 (CHEE10009) - Project Supervision

  • Chemical Engineering Industrial Project 5 (CHEE11014) - Project Supervision

  • Chemical Engineering Research Project 5 (CHEE11017) - Project Supervision

  • Advanced Chemical Engineering Dissertation (MSc) (PGEE11151) - Project Supervision

Positions available

Undergraduate Students
Undergraduates who are interested in adsorption and membrane separation, materials synthesis, and catalytic science, please contact Dr. Huang.
Graduate Students:
Always looking for outstanding prospective students who are interested in Ph.D. studies in Chem. Eng. The following scholarships can be applied to support your study. (School of Engineering also provides Ph.D. scholarships for exceptional applicants)
More funding information can be found here!
Postdoctoral researchers
Outstanding applicants can consider the following fellowship, e.g., EPSRC, RAE, MC (Individual Fellowships), Newton International Fellowships, Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Fellowships

Visiting and Research Positions

Interested in visiting student/scholar/professor


Harvey Yi Huang, Ph.D.
Reader in Chemical Engineering
Institute for Materials & Processes (IMP)
School of Engineering, the University of Edinburgh
Room 1.077, Sanderson Building
The King's Buildings, Rober Stevenson Road
Edinburgh EH9 3FB, Scotland, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0) 131 650 7793




Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Monash University, Clayton

15 Mar 200720 Oct 2011

Award Date: 20 Oct 2010

Bachelor of Engineering, Harbin Engineering University

15 Aug 20021 Jun 2006

Award Date: 1 Jun 2006


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  • Lithium Harvesting from the Most Abundant Primary and Secondary Sources: A Comparative Study on Conventional and Membrane Technologies

    Butt, F. S., Lewis, A., Chen, T., Mazlan, N., Wei, X., Hayer, J., Chen, S., Han, J., Yang, Y., Yang, S. & Huang, H. Y., 29 Mar 2022, In: Membranes. 12, 4, 373.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
  • Ultra-permeable zeolitic imidazolate frameworks-intercalated graphene oxide membranes for unprecedented ultrafast molecular separation

    Chen, T., Butt, F. S., Zhang, M., Wei, X., Lewis, A., Radacsi, N., Semião, A. J. C., Huang, Y. & Han, J., 1 Sep 2021, In: Chemical Engineering Journal. 419, p. 129507

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
  • Facile Fabrication of Zeolitic Imidazolate Framework Hollow Fibre Membranes via A Novel Scalable Continuous Fluid Circulation Process

    Lewis, A., Chen, T., Butt, F. S., Wei, X., Radacsi, N., Fan, X. & Huang, Y., 15 Jul 2021, (E-pub ahead of print) In: Nanoscale. p. 1-12 12 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
  • Research progress and prospect of membrane method in seawater/brine extraction of lithium

    Han, J., Zeng, X., Wang, K., Huang, Y., Meng, Q., Zhou, L., Li, Z., Liu, R. & Zhen, C., 1 Jul 2021, (E-pub ahead of print) In: Acta Materiae Compositae Sinica. p. 1-15 15 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
  • Discovery of widespread transcription initiation at microsatellites predictable by sequence-based deep neural network

    Grapotte, M., Saraswat, M., Bessière, C., Menichelli, C., Ramilowski, J. A., Severin, J., Hayashizaki, Y., Itoh, M., Tagami, M., Murata, M., Kojima-ishiyama, M., Noma, S., Noguchi, S., Kasukawa, T., Hasegawa, A., Suzuki, H., Nishiyori-sueki, H., Frith, M., Abugessaisa, I., Aitken, S. & 471 others, Aken, B. L., Alam, I., Alam, T., Alasiri, R., Alhendi, A. M. N., Alinejad-rokny, H., Alvarez, M. J., Andersson, R., Arakawa, T., Araki, M., Arbel, T., Archer, J., Archibald, A. L., Arner, E., Arner, P., Asai, K., Ashoor, H., Astrom, G., Babina, M., Baillie, J. K., Bajic, V. B., Bajpai, A., Baker, S., Baldarelli, R. M., Balic, A., Bansal, M., Batagov, A. O., Batzoglou, S., Beckhouse, A. G., Beltrami, A. P., Beltrami, C. A., Bertin, N., Bhattacharya, S., Bickel, P. J., Blake, J. A., Blanchette, M., Bodega, B., Bonetti, A., Bono, H., Bornholdt, J., Bttcher, M., Bougouffa, S., Boyd, M., Breda, J., Brombacher, F., Brown, J. B., Bult, C. J., Burroughs, A. M., Burt, D. 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    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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