Joelle Frechette

Joelle Frechette

Co-Vice Chair of Graduate Education
Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research Group

Research Interests

Soft materials, interfacial science, adhesion

We study materials at interfaces to address outstanding issues in the fields of adhesion and materials design. Interfaces are a region in space where two phases meet (e.g. solid-liquid, liquid-liquid), and controlling interfacial properties is necessary for multiple emerging technologies. For example, at a solid-liquid interface understanding of the interactions between the phases can give us the ability to create antifogging or self-cleaning materials, or to control and localize inks for 3D and conventional printing. Similarly, adhesives and lubricants are engineered to create sticky or slippery interfaces. Droplets, emulsions, and foams exist because of the presence of fluid-fluid interfaces, and they are central in the development of consumer products, pharmaceutical formulation, strategies for oil recovery. Beyond these materials applications, the large surface to volume ratios provided when devices are shrunk to the micro- and nanoscale create particularly exciting opportunities for device function via tunable interfacial properties.


  • Ph.D. Princeton University (2005)
  • NSF CAREER Award (2008)
  • 3M Non-tenured Faculty award (2008)
  • W.H. Huggins Excellence in Teaching (2010)
  • Outstanding Chapter Adviser (for AIChE/SBE) (2010)
  • ONR Young Investigator Award (2011)
  • NAE Frontiers of Engineering Symposium (2012)
  • Fellow of the American Chemical Society (2017)