Initially wanting to pursue a career as a chemist, Robert S. Brodkey, PhD took courses in chemistry but found that he wasn’t quite interested in the subject. He then decided to take courses in chemical engineering instead, which he found much more fascinating. In 1948, he received an Associate of Arts from the City College of San Francisco. Then in 1950, he received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in chemical engineering, both from the University of California. He completed his education in 1952, receiving a Doctor of Philosophy in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he participated in a study in freeze-drying. He began his career as a research chemical engineer at Esso Research & Engineering Company from 1952 to 1956. He briefly took on the same role at Esso Standard Oil Company from 1956 to 1957. Then, he ventured into education, becoming an assistant professor, associate professor, and then full professor at The Ohio State University from 1957 to 1992. Today, Dr. Brodkey holds the title of professor emeritus at The Ohio State University.
In addition to his primary appointments in the field, Dr. Brodkey has also received several professional fellowships with the American Academy of Mechanics, the American Institute of Chemists, the American Physical Society, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization in Germany. He holds several patents in the field and has consulted in areas such as image processing and analysis, fluid dynamics, two-phase flow, rheology, mixing kinetics, and turbulent motion. Dr. Brodkey also extended his expertise as an author, writing several industry texts, including “The Phenomena of Fluid Motions” and “Transport Phenomena, A Unified Approach,” as well as several of their reprint editions. “The Phenomena of Fluid Motions” was reprinted by Dover Publications in 1995 and “Transport Phenomena, A Unified Approach” was published in 1988 by McGraw-Hill as part of the Chemical Engineering Series, and has been translated into a two-volume Greek edition.
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