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Graduate Students

Drew Davidson

Drew Davidson, Ph.D. Student

Contact:

Email: d2davids@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Drew Davidson

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Drew joined our group as a PhD student with the support of the inaugural Deep Tech Commercialization scholarship. Drew started his career as an undergraduate in the Nanotechnology Engineering program at the University of Waterloo, where he developed a focus on adapting emerging technologies for health and environmental applications. Over the course of his studies, he worked on projects utilizing nanomaterials in the treatment of cancer, and in the reduction of greenhouse gases, culminating in a project aimed at reducing infrastructure damage from ice storms using superhydrophobic coatings. Drew went on to complete a Masters of Engineering in Chemical Engineering, also from the University of Waterloo, while working on a project devoted to using biodegradable polymers to reduce the negative environmental impacts of chemical fertilizers used in agriculture. After graduating, Drew worked for several small technology companies developing health and environmental applications such as Avro Life Science, before starting his own company in 2023.

Research Interests:

Drew is passionate about developing sustainable, non-toxic materials. His current project is the development of a safe material for firefighter PPE.

Shakiba Samsami

Shakiba Samsami, Ph.D. Student

Contact:

Email: shakiba.samsami@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Shakiba Samsami

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Shakiba is a dedicated Ph.D. researcher who has been an integral part of our lab since 2023. Notably, her doctoral thesis has been jointly developed at the University of Waterloo and the University of British Columbia. She holds both a bachelor's and master's degree in chemical engineering, acquired from the University of Tehran. Throughout her undergraduate and graduate studies, her focus was primarily on the synthesis and characterization of MOFs, driven by a passion for water treatment.

Research Interests:

Shakiba's research focus primarily revolves around reticular chemistry, sustainable materials, and additive manufacturing.

Saeed Hadad

Saeed Hadad, Ph.D. Student

Contact:

Email: Shadad@uwaterloo.ca

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Saeed has been the lab's active Ph.D. researcher since 2023. His academic journey commenced with research on the self-assembly of multi-block copolymers for drug delivery while he received his bachelor's degree in 2019. Then, he shifted his focus to synthesizing structured polymers, particularly for use as advanced lithium-ion battery electrolytes, and obtained his master's in 2021, specializing in polymer engineering from Sahand University of Technology, Tabriz, Iran. He is now a Ph.D. candidate in the chemical engineering department at the University of Waterloo.

Research Interests:

Saeed's current research interest lies in the fields of smart materials , bio-based polymers, novel polymerization techniques, and sustainable energy storage systems.

Monica Ho

Monica Ho, MASc. Student

Contact:

Email: m8ho@uwaterloo.ca

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Monica is pursuing an MASc. in Chemical Engineering - Nanotechnology at the University of Waterloo, investigating metal-organic frameworks for direct air CO2 capture. She brings with her 7+ years of experience in the North American power industry and a BSc in Mechanical Engineering (with Distinction) from the University of Alberta.

Research Interests:

Monica's current research interest lies in fields such as carbon capture and conversion , sustainable materials, and biomimetic design.

Mahsa Barjinikhabbaz

Mahsa Barjinikhabbaz, MASc. Student

Contact:

Email: mahsa.barjinikhabbaz@gmail.com

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Mahsa is a master's researcher who joined the lab in 2023. She completed her bachelor's degree in chemical engineering at the University of Ferdowsi, Iran. During her studies, she worked on the synthesis of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to optimize their growth conditions. She is currently pursuing her master's degree in chemical engineering at the University of Waterloo.

Research Interests:

Mahsa's aim and passion for research is to work on laser-induced graphene for different applications such as electromagnetic shielding and biosensors.

Estatira Amirieh

Estatira Amirieh, MASc. Student

Contact:

Email: estatiraa@gmail.com

LinkedIn: Estatira Amirieh

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Estatira is currently pursuing a Master's (MASc) degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Waterloo, having previously completed a Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from Tehran Azad University South Branch (IAU). Throughout her academic journey, she secured internships in the petrochemical industry, with a primary focus on oil refineries. These experiences equipped her with practical skills in conducting process simulations and safety studies. Driven by a growing interest in sustainability and environmental consciousness, Estatira is currently immersed in research focused on the 3D printing of cellulosic inks. Her work is centered around the creation of sustainable scaffolds applicable in various scientific and industrial domains. The goal is to harness the unique properties of cellulosic inks to promote the development of environmentally friendly structures.

Research Interests:

Her academic pursuits extend to diverse areas, including sustainable materials, additive manufacturing, and carbon capture.

Shayan Ghasemi

Shayan Ghasemi, MASc. Student

Contact:

Email: shayan.ghsemi@uwaterloo.ca

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Shayan joined our group in 2023, bringing with him a background in chemical engineering from Amirkabir University of Technology, where he concentrated on process design, simulation, and the design of utility units and reactors. Throughout his undergraduate studies, Shayan undertook diverse projects, including an advanced design of a methanol reactor, a pre-feasibility study on methanol production plants, and a market study and plant design for methylamine production. Currently, he is actively engaged in pursuing a master's degree in chemical engineering at the University of Waterloo

Research Interests:

Shayan's current research interest lies in fields such as liquid-liquid 3D printing, aerogel, interfacial assembly, electromagnetic interference shielding, carbon capture.

Research Scholars

Mahyar Panahi Sarmad

Mahyar Panahi Sarmad, Ph.D. Student

Contact:

Email: mahyar13@student.ubc.ca

LinkedIn: Mahyar Panahi Sarmad

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Mahyar is a trainee in material science and engineering, aspiring to lead the cutting-edge field of multi-responsive and intelligent materials. Even as an undergraduate student, he actively pursued a deep understanding of polymer science and engineering, eventually achieving his MSc in January 2018. During his master's studies, Mahyar focused on utilizing conductive nanoparticles in Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (Artificial Muscles) while simultaneously exploring both traditional and modern approaches to Aerogel design and application. As an Elite scholar for nearly two years, he also conducted extensive research on Shape Memory materials. Additionally, Mahyar gained valuable experience in 3D and 4D printing as a research associate at Jiangnan University for two and a half years. His current research at UBC and UW centers around "Journey into Interfacial Assembly: Harnessing Chemistry for Sustainable Functionality."

Research Interests:

Mahyar's research interests are in the fields of additive manufacturing , smart polymer composites (sensors and actuators) , porous structures (aerogels and foams), and EMI shielding or other electrical applications.

Zahara Izadi Kahkeshi

Zahra Izadi Kahkeshi, Visiting Ph.D. Researcher

Contact:

Waterloo Email: zizadika@uwaterloo.ca

Personal Email:zahraizadi.68@gmail.com

LinkedIn: Zahra Izadi Kahkeshi

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Zahra is a visiting research graduate student. Currently, she is pursuing her Ph.D. research at IPPI, Iran, where she has been engaged in the synthesis of viscosity index (VI) improvers based on polyisobutylene. Her research with us will primarily delve into the rheological behavior and characteristics of these VI improvers. Zahra completed her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Polymer Engineering in 2012 and 2014, respectively, and has acquired comprehensive expertise in various fields, including polymer synthesis and characterization, spectroscopic, thermal and mechanical analysis, catalysis, hydrogels, and simulation.

Research Interests:

Zahra’s research interest mainly focuses in cationic polymerization, catalysis, rheology, simulation and polymer characterization.

Ziyu Zhuge

Ziyu Zhuge, BSc. Co-op Student

Contact:

Email: z2zhuge@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Ziyu Zhuge

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Ziyu joined the Multiscale Materials Design Center at the University of Waterloo as an Undergraduate research assistant in 2024. He is studying Chemical Engineering at the University of Waterloo. Besides engineering, he is also interested in calligraphy, and literature and has two published novels

Dr. Zahra MonsefKhoshhesab

Zahra MonsefKhoshhesab, Visiting Professor

Contact:

Email: yzmonsefk@uwaterloo.ca

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Dr. Monsef serves as an Associate Professor in Analytical Chemistry at Payame Noor University in Iran. Zahra obtained both her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran. During her graduate studies, Zahra focused on the complexation reactions of various cations with Crown ethers in binary non-aqueous mixed solvents, examining them from thermodynamic perspectives. Following her Ph.D., she shifted her research focus to the synthesis and application of nanomaterials, including metal oxides, carbon-based nanocomposites, and magnetic nanoparticles such as Ferrites, magnetic molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs), and magnetic graphene oxide, for solid-phase extraction (SPE) and pollutant remediation. Additionally, Zahra has contributed significantly to the development of electrochemical sensors using nanomaterials. Currently, her research interests lie in the development of biomaterial-based nanocomposites for environmental remediation and analytical purposes, particularly in fabricating sensing agents for detecting environmental pollutants and preconcentrating/determining targets in environmental samples.

Research Interests:

Development of biomaterial-based nano composites for environmental applications and abrication of chemical sensors for environmental pollution monitoring.

Hamzah Curtay

Hamzah Curtay, BSc. Research Assistant

Contact:

Email: MHcurtay@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Hamzah Curtay

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Hamzah joined the lab in Fall of 2023 as an undergraduate researcher with the goal of developing an eco friendly and mass manufacturable aerogel with applications in EMI shielding and Thermal Insulation. Hamzah is in a fourth-year design project with his partners Aliasgar Bawangaonwala and Anthony Keen who look to create a start-up company from this project.

Research Interests:

Hamzah’s research interests include working on aerogel materials, battery technology, and long term goals include developing a cross Atlantic Electric Airplane.

Anthony Keen

Anthony Keen, BSc. Research Assistant

Contact:

Email: akeen@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Anthony Keen

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Anthony joined the lab as an undergraduate research assistant with the aim of creating a company that develops eco-friendly high-tech aerogels and manufacturing processes for commercial electromagnetic interference shielding and thermal insulation applications. Anthony is a fourth-year nanotechnology engineering student who works towards these goals with Hamzah Curtay and Aliasgar Bawangaonwala.

Research Interests:

Anthony’s research interests include porous material and sustainable manufacturing process.

Aliasgar Bawangaonwala

Aliasgar Bawangaonwala, BSc. Research Assistant

Contact:

Email: abawanga@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Aliasgar Bawangaonwala

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Aliasgar joined the lab in the Fall of 2023 as an undergraduate researcher to develop a simple, eco-friendly, yet robust, process to manufacture aerogels with EMI shielding and Thermal Insulation applications. Aliasgar is in a fourth-year design project with his partners Hamzah Curtay and Anthony Keen who look to create a start-up company from this project.

Research Interests:

Aliasgar’s research interests include using microfluidics to aid in designing and adding additives to aerogels, and nanotechnology in diagnostics and drug delivery.

Asal Jaberansari

Asal Jaberansari, BSc. Co-op Research Assistant

Contact:

Email: ajaberan@uwaterloo.ca

LinkedIn: Asal Jaberansari

Brief Biography and Role in the Lab:

Asal is a fourth-year Biochemistry student specializing in Biotechnology at the University of Waterloo. Asal has previously worked on projects focused on microplastic identification and quantification as well as the study of various selenium compounds in the environment. In the Kamkar Lab, Asal is currently developing wound dressing material from cellulose nanoparticles using a BIOX 3D printer. Additionally, she is investigating the 3D printability of ionically cross-linked graphene oxide. Asal is also an active member of the University of Waterloo community. Having participated in various clubs, she is currently acting as a coordinator for Science Orientation 2024.

Alumni:

Hossein Mashhadimoslem - post doc 2022-2023

Zahra Yadollahi - PhD Visiting Scholar Winter 2024

Shokoofa Dehghani - High School Stundet 2024-2023

Jared Beacom - Co-op Research Assistant Winter 2024

Matthew Roberto - Co-op Research Assistant Winter 2024