Prof Izak Nieuwoudt

Extraordinary Professor

Short Bio

  • Education
    • DEng (Engineering), Stellenbosch University, 2023
    • PhD (Engineering), Stellenbosch University, 1994
    • MEng (Extractive Metallurgical Engineering), Stellenbosch University, 1989
    • BEng (Chemical Engineering), Stellenbosch University, 1986
  • Professional experience
    • Technical Director- FRI, Stillwater, OK, USA – October 2022 – present
    • Senior Engineer -FRI, Stillwater, OK, USA – January 2022 – September 2022
    • Innovation Advisor – Koch Engineered Solutions, Wichita, KS, USA – October 2021 – January 2022
    • Chief Technology Officer – Koch-Glitsch, Wichita, KS, USA – May 2016 – October 2021
    • Director: Research & Development
      Koch-Glitsch, Wichita, USA 
      September 2003 to October 2021
    • Professor, Associate Professor, Senior Lecturer
      Department of Process Engineering, Stellenbosch University
      April 1995 to August 2003
    • Senior Process Engineer, Senior Process Engineer Grade I
      SASTECH (Division of SASOL LTD.)
      November 1993 to March 1995
    • Design Engineer
      Universal Oil Products (UOP), Chicago, USA 
      October 1992 to October 1993
    • Senior Process Engineer, Process Engineer, Assistant Process Engineer
      SASTECH (A division of SASOL LTD.)
      March 1989 to October 1992
    • Research Assistant
      University of Stellenbosch, Chamber of Mines Contract
      January 1987 to February 1989
  • Honours & Awards
    • 2022: AIChE Separations Division award for a lifetime of contributions to the fields of distillation and absorption
    • 2010: Koch Industries Environmental, Health & Safety Excellence award.
    • 2002: Alexander von Humboldt Stipend to do research in Germany.
    • 2001: Listed in Marquis Who’s who in Science and Engineering.
    • 2001: DAAD Scholarship to do research in Germany.
    • 2001: Ad hominen promotion to Full Professor on the basis of research outputs.
    • 2000: University of Stellenbosch Lecturer of the year award for excellence in undergraduate teaching.
    • 1999: Ad hominem promotion to Associate Professor on the basis of research outputs.
    • 1999: Awarded University of Stellenbosch medal as one of the researchers of the year.
    • 1993: Sent to USA by Sasol on basis of being identified as an engineer with good potential.
    • 1992: Sastech (Sasol) award for technical achievement in developing extractive distillation processes.

Research Interests

  • Mass transfer equipment development and design
  • Development of separation processes
  • Solvent driven separations
  • Supercritical fluid processing
  • Thermodynamic modeling, hydraulic modeling, CFD and process simulations
  • Energy efficiency and decarbonization technology
  • Troubleshooting
  • Pilot plant construction and safety
  • Engineering education

Selected Publications

Visit my Google Scholar Profile for a complete list of my publications.

  • Inventor on 410 patents in 46 patent families (  and
  • Nieuwoudt, I.   “Vapor-Liquid Equilibria and Densities for the System Butane + Hexacontane”, Journal of Chemical and Engineering Data, 1996, 41(5), pp. 1024-1027,
  • Nieuwoudt, I.   “The fractionation of high molecular weight alkane mixtures with supercritical fluids”, High Pressure Chemical Engineering, Edited von Rohr, R. and Trepp, C., Elsevier Science BV, 1996, pp. 283 – 291,, ISBN 0-444-82475-8.
  • Venter, D.L., Nieuwoudt, I.  “The separation of m-cresol from neutral oils with liquid-liquid extraction”, Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 1998, 37(10), pp. 4099-4106,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Crause, J.C.  “Mass transfer in short wetted-wall columns   Part II: Binary mixtures”, Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 1999, 38(12), pp. 4933-4937,
  • Van Dyk, B., Nieuwoudt, I.  “Design of solvents for extractive distillation”, Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, 2000, 39(5), pp. 1423-1429,
  • Crause, J.C., Nieuwoudt, I.  “The fractionation of paraffin wax mixtures”, Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 2000, 39(12), pp. 4871-4876,
  • Van Dyk, B., Nieuwoudt, I.  Book Chapter “The design of solvents for liquid-liquid extraction” in Advances in solvent extraction, edited by Prof. Y. Marcus, Chapter 5, Marcel Dekker, New York, Oct 2001, ISBN 0-8247-0601-3.
  • Erasmus, A.B., Nieuwoudt, I.  “Mass transfer in structured packing: A wetted-wall study”, Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 2001, 40(10), pp. 2310-2321,
  • Du Rand, M., Nieuwoudt, I.  “Measurement of Phase Equilibria of Supercritical Ethane and Paraffins”, Journal of Supercritical Fluids, 21, 2001, pp. 181 – 193,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Crause, J.C., Du Rand, M.  “Oligomer Fractionation with Supercritical Fluids” Journal of Supercritical Fluids, 24, 2002, pp. 47-55,
  • Schwarz, C.E., Nieuwoudt I.  “Phase Equilibrium of Propane and Alkanes. Part II: Hexatriacontane through Hexacontane”, Journal of Supercritical Fluids, 27, 2003, pp. 145-156,
  • Schwarz, C.E., Nieuwoudt, I., Knoetze, J.H. “Solubility measurements of high molecular mass n-alkanes, n-alcohols and alcohol ethoxylates in supercritical propane”,  Fluid Phase Equilibria, 247(1-2), 2006, pp. 169-174,
  • Ender, C., Nieuwoudt, I., Copp, M., Quotson, P.  “Improving packed tower performance”, Hydrocarbon Engineering, 2006, July 2006, pp. 51-55.
  • Penciak, J., Nieuwoudt, I., Spencer G.  “High-performance Trays:  Getting the best Capacity and Efficiency”, IChemE Symposium series 152, 2006, pp. 311-316.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Penciak, J.  “Best of both – exploring how high performance trays can deliver the best capacity and efficiency”, Hydrocarbon Engineering, (2007), July 2007, 85-89.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Karpilovskyi, O., Lockett, M.J.  “Revamp & retune: 6-pass Trays improve C3 splitter performance” Hydrocarbon Engineering, 2007, July 2007.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., INTALOX® ULTRA™ random packing – pushing the envelope, Distillation & Absorption proceedings, Eindhoven, The Netherlands, September 12-15, 2010.
  • Uys, E.C., Lamprecht, S.M., Schwarz, C.E., Burger A.J., Nieuwoudt, I., Erasmus, A.B., Knoetze, J.H. “Establishing a facility for hydrodynamic characterization of distillation column internals”, Distillation and Absorption, 2010.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Corio, C., DeGarmo, J. “Improvement in random packing performance”, PTQ, 2010, Q4,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Tray efficiency of SUPERFRAC® high-performance trays in C2 splitter service, Hydrocarbon Asia, April-June 2011, pp. 64-68.
  • Du Rand, M., Nieuwoudt, I., Schwarz, C.E., Knoetze, J.H,  A practical equation of state for non-spherical and asymmetric systems for application at high pressures. Part 2: Extension to mixtures, Canadian Jnl. Chem. Eng, 90(3), 2012, pp. 597-611,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Quotson, P., Ferrari, A.  “PROFLUX severe service grid dealing with challenging applications”, Distillation and Absorption Proceedings, 2014.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Sandford, N.  “Optimizing the design of splitter towers”, Chemical Engineering Transactions (Distillation and Absorption), 2018, 69.
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Sandford, N.  “Overcoming challenges – Part 2”, Hydrocarbon Engineering, 2019, August 2019,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Quotson, P., Yeh N., Juarez J.  “Modern methods”, Hydrocarbon Engineering, 2019, Feb 2019,
  • Nieuwoudt, I., Sandford, N., Quotson, P.  “Opportunities for distillation improvements through the application of novel mass transfer internals”, The Chemical Engineer, July/August 2023, pp 20-25.
  • Nieuwoudt, I.  “Hybrid distillation schemes and analysis”, The Chemical Engineer, September 2023, pp 36-45.