Introduction to Chemical Engineering Reactor Analysis: A Web–Based Reactor Design Game


  • Nese Orbey University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell MA 01854
  • Molly Clay University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell MA 01854
  • TW Fraser Russell University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716


An approach to explain chemical engineering through a web-based interactive game design was developed and used with college freshman and junior/senior high school students. The goal of this approach was to demonstrate how to model a lab-scale experiment, and use the results to design and operate a chemical reactor. The game incorporates both technical and economic considerations, such as inherent market uncertainty. The procedure that was followed and the student feedback are presented. 

Author Biographies

Nese Orbey, University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell MA 01854

Nese Orbey is an Associate Professor at the Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Massachusetts Lowell (UML) where she has received the Departmental Excellence in Teaching award and Excellence in Innovative and Transformational Education award. She obtained her Ph.D. from McGill University, Montreal, Canada. Her research interests are in polymer rheology and structure-property relations of polymers /nanocomposites. Before joining UML, she worked as a Team Leader/Technology Manger at QinetiQ North America (formerly Foster-Miller, Inc.). 

Molly Clay, University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell MA 01854

Molly Clay received her BS and MS in chemical engineering from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She pursued her Master’s degree under a GK-12 Fellowship where she got involved in STEM outreach. She currently is a research scientist at the US Army Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center. 

TW Fraser Russell, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716

T W Fraser Russell is the Alan P Colburn Professor Emeritus in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware. He is a member of NAE and a registered professional engineer in Delaware. In addition to his successful research efforts in photovoltaics and multi phase fluid mechanics he has coauthored three undergraduate texts for chemical engineering students. In recognition of his teaching efforts he has received a University of Delaware Excellence in Teaching Award, the AIChE Warren K. Lewis Award, and the ASEE Lifetime Achievement Award in Chemical Engineering Pedagogical Scholarship.