Prof. Sylvain Coulombe, ing., Ph.D.

Professor & Department Chair
Plasma Process
ing Laboratory – PPL
Department of Chemical Engineering
McGill University
3610 University Street
Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3A 0C5
(+1) 514 398 5213

Link to Google scholar page
Link to my Google agenda

B.Sc. Physics (1991), Sherbrooke
M.Sc.A. Chemical Engineering (1994), Sherbrooke
Ph.D. Chemical Engineering (1998), McGill
Examens de l’OIQ – Génie physique (2003-2007)

Board of Directors of the International Plasma Chemistry Society (IPCS)
International Advisory Board of Plasma Processes & Polymers 
Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec, Génie physique, OIQ #128770
IEEE Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society (IEEE NPSS)
Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC)
Regroupement stratégique FRQNT Plasma-Québec

Recent and Upcoming Invited Talks
  • Invited Topical Lecture at ICPIG-31, Granada, Spain (July 2013): Plasma-Assisted Synthesis of MWCNT-Based Nanostructures and Nanofluids
  • SPREE Lecture, UNSW School of Photovoltaic & Renewable Energy Engineering, Sydney, Australia (August 2013): Plasma-Assisted Synthesis of MWCNT-Based Nanostructures and Nanofluids
  • Honored Guest Speaker, Annual Dacey Lecture, Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, Canada (March 2014): Plasmas: From Natural Wonders to Engineering Applications
  • Plenary Lecture at HTPP-13, Toulouse, France (June 2014): Plasma-Assisted Synthesis of Nanostructures: A Key Enabler for Green Technologies
  • Invited talk at iPlasmaNano-V, Torremolinos, Spain (October 2014): Plasma-assisted synthesis of nanomaterials and nanostructures for energy applications
  • Keynote Lecture at 64th Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference, Symposium on Electrochemical Energy Conversion and Storage, Niagara Falls, Canada (October 2014): Plasma-Functionalized MWCNTs Grown on 316 Stainless Steel as Supercapacitor Electrodes
  • Distinguished Speakers Series, Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto (February 2015): MWCNTs as a platform material for greener energies: From solar thermal energy harvesting to CO2 upcycling
  • Invited Talk at ICRP-9, Honolulu, USA (October 2015): TBD
Awards and Recognitions
Carrie M. Derick Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching & Supervision, McGill University, 2010
Canada Research Chair, Government of Canada, 2002-2012
Dean’s List of Honors, Ph.D., McGill University, 1998

Current Teaching Responsibilities
Design Project I & II (CHEE456/457, core undergraduate)
Instrumentation and Measurement II (CHEE 491, core undergraduate)

Main Research Interests
Plasma-assisted synthesis of nanomaterials for greener technologies and biomedical applications
  • Synthesis and characterization of high temperature-stable nanofluids
  • Nanofluids for gas hydrate formation (or inhibition), CO2 absorption/stripping, optical therapeutics and rapid diagnostics
  • CO2 upcycling on novel electrocatalysts
Plasma production of reactive species at atmospheric pressure and above
  • Plasma-assisted combustion (PAC)
  • Capacitively-coupled RF APGD sources for reactive species production
Thermal plasma processing
  • Waste valorization and ore processing using an electric arc furnace (EAF)
  • Dynamics of interacting twin-cathode arcs
  • Greener plasma processing
Research & Development Collaborators
Prof. Jeffrey Bergthorson, Alternative Fuels Laboratory, Mechanical Engineering, McGill
Mr. Pierre Carabin, Director of Engineering, PyroGenesis Canada Inc.
Mr. Victor Lanzo, President & CEO, Leap Medical Labs Inc.
Mr. Christian Normand, CEO, Recentis Advanced Materials Canada
Prof. Martin Olivier, Medicine, McGill University
Prof. Sasha Omanovic, Electrochemistry and Corrosion Lab, Chemical Engineering, McGill
Prof. Phillip Servio, Chemical Engineering, McGill

Principal Administrative Duties
Department Chair (09/2012-08/2015)
Tri-Agency Advisory Committee
Standing Internal Review Committee – Canada Research Chairs, James McGill Professors and William Dawson Scholars
Carrie M. Derick Award Selection Committee

Plasma science and engineering, plasma reactor and process design, laser ablation, plasma diagnostics, process control and instrumentation, heat and mass transfer, nanoparticle synthesis, heterogeneous nanostructured coatings, nanofluids, electrical discharge light sources, plasma medicine.

Employment History
07/2013-Now: Full Professor
06/2007-06/2013: Associate Professor
09/2001-05/2007: Assistant Professor
10/1997 to 05/2001: Senior Research Scientist, GE Global Research

100/10/1 Career Objectives
Write 100 peer-reviewed research articles/Obtain 10 patents/Launch 1 private company

Natural habitat.Personal Interests

Downhill and cross-country skiing, bicycle touring and mechanics, camping and hiking. Learning to play bass guitar (classic rock, blues, reggae, heavy metal).
What I need to do before I turn 50? Cycle from San Francisco to Montreal, along the West Coast and across Canada.

Touring Cycling Trips
2010 – Outaouais/Laurentides 
2011 – Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive
2012 – Montréal => Rimouski
2013 – Gaspésie
2014 – Les deux rives du Saint-Laurent
2015 – Moncton => Rivière-du-Loup (tentative)