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Norman J. Wagner - Biography

Norman Wagner Head Shot
Credit: Norman J. Wagner

Prof. Norman J. Wagner is the Unidel Robert L. Pigford Chair in Chemical Engineering at the University of Delaware. He is President of the Society of Rheology, is the co-founder and director of the Center for Neutron Science at UD. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2015. His research focuses on materials for manned space exploration, the rheology of complex fluids, neutron scattering, colloid and polymer science, applied statistical mechanics, nanotechnology and particle technology. His research interests include the effects of applied flow on the microstructure and material properties of colloidal suspensions, polymers, self-assembled surfactant solutions, and complex fluids. Prof. Wagner earned a bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon and PhD from Princeton University, was an NSF/NATO Postdoctoral Fellow in Germany, and a Director’s Postdoctoral Fellow at Los Alamos National Lab. He was named a Senior Fulbright Scholar (Konstanz, Germany) and served as a guest Professor at the ETH, Zurich (1997) and the University of Rome (2004). His recent awards include the Sustained Research Prize of the Neutron Scattering Society of America (NSSA) (2018), election to the National Academy of Inventors (2016), and as Fellow of the AAAS (2015) and the NSSA (2014). In 2014 received the Bingham Medal from the Society of Rheology and in 2013, the PTF Thomas Baron Award from AIChE. The US Army presented him the Siple Award in 2002 for his development of shear thickening fluids for novel energy absorbing materials. He co-authored a textbook (2008) on Mass and Heat Transfer for the Chemical Engineering series of Cambridge University Press and a book on Colloidal Suspension Rheology (2012). Patented and commercially developed scientific instruments include rheo-optic instruments (TA Instruments) as well as novel rheo-SANS instruments for investigating nanoscale and microscale structure in flowing systems currently available at NIST and the Institute Laue Langevin in Grenoble. Prof. Wagner cofounded STF Technologies LLC in 2003 to commercialize his inventions for personal protective equipment and astronaut protection for NASA. More about Professor Wagner and his research can be found at

Created May 21, 2019, Updated September 9, 2021