Catalysts and Catalysis


As the world population grows, there is an increasing need to utilize resources more efficiently. This includes developing more environmentally friendly chemical processes. Catalysts play a key role in the chemical industry by increasing the rate of reactions. Developing more efficient catalysts can reduce the production of environmentally harmful by-products and allows more energy efficient processes to be used. More efficient catalysts lower the costs of producing important chemical products. Catalysts are typically divided into two broad classes. Heterogeneous catalysts have a different phase than the reactacts, such as a solid catalyst with gas phase reactants. Homogeneous catalysts have the same phase as the reactants, such as catalyst and reactants in solution phase. Faculty in the CHME Department are using computational modeling and experiments to develop more efficient catalysts for important chemical processes. Explore the research pages of these faculty for more details.



Dr. Thomas A. Manz

Associate Professor

Office: JH 150
Phone: (575) 646-2503

Educational Background:
Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Purdue University (2009)
M.S., Chemical Engineering, Purdue University (1998)
B.S., Chemical Engineering, The University of Toledo (1994) 



Student Activities:


  • Julia Fernald, Clarita Regalado, Hongmei Luo, Fe-doped Ni3S2 nanowires on nickel foam as overall water splitting catalysts, Southwest-Rocky Mountain Regional Meeting, El Paso, Nov. 11-15, 2019 (poster).
  • Clarita Regalado, Julia Fernald, Jessica Houston, Nancy Flores, Hongmei Luo, Fe-doped Ni3S2 nanowires on nickel foam as bifunctional water-splitting catalysts with low overpotentials, USDA PI meeting, Costa Mesa, CA, Feb. 27 – March 2, 2019 (poster).
  • Di Huang, Qi Zhou, Christopher Catanach, Hongmei Luo, Polymer-assisted deposition Li(Ni,Co,Mn)O2 thin films, MRS Spring Meeting, Phoenix, April 2-6, 2018 (poster).
  • Stephanie Richins, Hongmei Luo, LaNiO3 catalysts for oxygen evolution reaction and oxygen reduction reaction, BYU AIChE Regional Conference, Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, March 23-24, 2018 (oral).
  • Swagotom Sarker, Stephanie Richins, Pei Xu, Hongmei Luo, Catalytic activity of defect free- and rich-molybdenum disulfide nanosheets for the photocatalytic removal of carcinogenic chromium ions, 2015 NMAS Research Symposium, Albuquerque, Nov. 14, 2015 (poster).
  • Swagotom Sarker, Litao Yan, Rodrigo Rodriguez, Pei Xu, Hongmei Luo, Morphology dependence photocatalytic for Cr6+ reduction, NM EPSCoR All Hands Meeting, Socorro, April 17, 2015 (poster).



  • H. Z. Wang, W. Xu, S. Richins, K. Liaw, L. Yan, M. Zhou, H. M. Luo, Polymer-assisted approach to LaCo1-xNixO3 network nanostructures as bifunctional oxygen electrocatalysts, Electrochimica Acta, 296, 945-953 (2019).
  • W. Xu, L. T. Yan, L. Teich, S. Liaw, M. Zhou, H. M. Luo, Polymer-assisted chemical solution synthesis of La0.8Sr0.2MnO3-based perovskite with A-site deficiency and cobalt-doping for bifunctional oxygen catalyst in alkaline media, Electrochimica Acta, 273, 80-87 (2018).
  • S. Sarker, J. Peters, X. Q. Chen, B. Li, G. Chen, L. Yan, S. Richins, S. Das, M. Zhou, H. M. Luo, Engineering molybdenum diselenide and its reduced graphene oxide hybrids for efficient electrocatalytic hydrogen evolution, ACS Appl. Nano Mater. 1, 2143-2152 (2018)
  • L. T. Yan, Y. Lin, X. Xu, W. Xu, T. Salas, H. Smallidge, M. Zhou, H. M. Luo, La0.8Sr0.2MnO3–based perovskite nanoparticles with the A-site deficiency as high-performance bifunctional oxygen catalyst in alkaline solution, ACS. Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 9, 23820-23827 (2017).
  • W. Xu, L. T. Yan, H. Wang, S. Liaw, H. M. Luo, Niobium-doped Titanium Dioxide on Functionalized Carbon Supported Palladium Catalyst for Enhanced Ethanol Electro-oxidation, RSC Adv. 7, 34618-34623 (2017).



  • Optimization of Atmospheric-Pressure Extraction Conditions for Recovery of Rare Earth Elements from Coal Fly Ash ( 2022).