Professor | Chemical Thermodynamics, Chemical Separation Technologies
Prof Prathieka Naidoo is a professor of Chemical Engineering at Stellenbosch University with a research focus on chemical thermodynamics, and separation processes and technologies. She was awarded a Sasol-NRF Research Chair (SARChi) in Green Hydrogen in 2023.
She obtained a PhD (Engineering) in 2004 from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) and began her academic career as a lecturer at the then University of Natal in 2004. Throughout her academic lecturing career she has been passionate about module development and curriculum renewal, having undertaken many changes to the chemical engineering programme at UKZN, and lectured across all four years of the teaching programme. She was the Academic Leader for the Chemical Engineering Programme at UKZN during 2012 – 2014 and served as the Programme Coordinator (2016 -2019).
She is the Co-Director of the Thermodynamics Research Unit (TRU) and served as the Interim DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Fluorine Process Engineering and Separations Technology during 2019 – 2020. She has been the recipient of a number of research contracts and funding awards through the NRF, ESKOM, DSI and DST research initiatives and programmes.
Currently, Prof Naidoo has more than 120 publications in international peer reviewed journals, an h-index of 26, and total number of citations of 2531. She has successfully supervised/co-supervised and graduated 11 PhD and 12 masters students, and supervised four Postdoctoral Fellows. She is currently supervising 12 postgraduate students.
PhD (Chemical Engineering) University of KwaZulu-Natal – (2004)
MSc.Eng. (Chemical Engineering) University of Natal – (2002 Upgrade to PhD)
BSc.Eng (Chemical Engineering) University of Natal – (1999)
August 2021 – Present: Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering, Stellenbosch University (SU)
Aug 2018 – June 2021: Professor in the Chemical Engineering Programme at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN)
2016 – 2019: Programme Coordinator in the Chemical Engineering Programme at UKZN
2015 – 2018: Associate Professor in the Chemical Engineering Programme at UKZN
2012 – 2014: Academic Leader for the Chemical Engineering Programme at UKZN
2009 – 2015: Senior Lecturer in the Chemical Engineering Programme at UKZN
2004 – 2009: Lecturer in the Department of Chemical Engineering Programme at the University of Natal (UN)
2017 – Present: Co-Director of the Thermodynamics Research Unit (TRU)
2014 – 2021: Director of Datachem Pty Ltd.
2019 – 2020: Interim DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Fluorine Process Engineering and Separations Technology
Honours and awards
2023 – Present: Sasol-NRF Research Chair (SARChi) in Green Hydrogen
2012 – 2017;2019; 2020: School of Engineering Research Productivity Awards (UKZN)
2017: Top 10 Young Researchers at UKZN (under 40 years)
2013: SAIChE Innovation Award (Awarded to TRU Research Team)
2002 – 2003: NRF Prestigious Scholarship for postgraduate studies
2001: 2001 Catalyst Innovation Competition (National round – team award)
Prof Naidoo is a specialist in chemical thermodynamics – high pressure and low pressure vapour-liquid equilibria. Her research is application-driven, focusing on fundamental data measurement and modelling to simulation and pilot scale work. She has also been involved in the design of a range of equipment, high/low pressure and high/low temperature studies, for the above investigations, for bench-top and pilot scale work.
Research interests include:
High-pressure and low pressure phase equilibria – modelling and measurements
Chemical separation technologies
Distillation, enhanced distillation techniques, crystallization and extraction experiments, pilot plant distillation and extraction operations
Supercritical studies and solid waste management processes
A list of her published works can be found on her Google Scholar profile.
Chemical Engineering: Mass and Energy Balancing 254