Paul Painter


Phone: (814) 865-5767

Office Address:
414 Academic Activities (AA)

Title: Emeritus Professor


Research Areas:
Clean Fuels & Catalysis
Coal Science & Technology
Petroleum & Natural Gas Engineering

Education Background:
• BSc and MSc degrees from University College, London


Painter was born in Birmingham, England and obtained B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from University College in London. After a year doing Voluntary Service Overseas (the British equivalent of Peace Corps) in Jamaica, he came to the U.S. in 1972 to study macromolecular science at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He joined the faculty at Penn State in 1976 and apart from a temporary leave of absence to serve as a “rotator” directing the polymers program at the National Science Foundation in Washington D.C., he has been at Penn State ever since. He has published more than 260 papers on various subjects, mainly on vibrational spectroscopy, the phase behavior of polymer solutions and blends, the structure and solubility of fossil fuels, and the phase behavior of asphaltenes. He was named a fellow of the American Physical Society in 1999. In collaboration with Mike Coleman, he has also published four textbooks and three CDs. His unusual combination of research interests resulted in work on the use of ionic liquids and solutions in separating oil, bitumen, and other hydrocarbons from mineral matter and the filing of associated patent applications. Two of those patents were recently allowed (2019) and six more are pending.

Research Interests:

• Ionic Liquids for environmentally friendly fossil fuel processing
• New methods for extracting oil from oil sands
• New technologies for consolidating tailings from coal washing operations


Paul Painter's Publications
Record 1 - 10 of 63 View All
Mathews, J. P., C. E. Burgess Clifford, and P. C. Painter, (2015). "The Interactions of Illinois No. 6 Bituminous Coal with Solvents: a Review of Solvent Swelling and Extraction Literature," Energy & Fuels, v. 29, pp. 1279-1294.
Painter, P., B. Veytsman, and J. Youtcheff, (2015). "Asphaltene Aggregation and Solubility," Energy Fuels, v. 29 (4), pp. 2120–2133, DOI: 10.1021/ef5024912.
Painter, P., B. Veytsman, and J. Youtcheff, (2015). "Guide to Asphaltene Solubility," Energy Fuels, v. 29 (5), pp. 2951–2961, DOI: 10.1021/ef502918t.
Painter, P., B. Veytsman, and J. Youtcheff, (2015). Phase Behavior of Bituminous Materials, Energy & Fuels, v. 29 (11), pp. 7048–7057.
Pulati, N., A. Lupinsky, B. G. Miller, and P. Painter, (2015). “Extraction of Bitumen from Oil Sands using Deep Eutectic Ionic Liquid Analogues,” Energy and Fuels, v. 29, pp. 4927-4935.
Pulati, N., T. Tighe, and P. C. Painter, (2015). Bitumen-Silica Interactions in a Deep Eutectic Ionic Liquid Analogue, Energy & Fuels, v. 30 (1), pp. 249-255.
Painter, P., and B. G. Miller, (2014 September 2013 - January ). Evaluation of the Compatibility of Asphalt and Asphalt Additives (RAP and RAS) Progress Reports 1-8, Prepared for SES, Inc./Federal Highway Association.
Painter, P., and B. G. Miller, (2013 September 23). “AIR: The Separation of Hydrocarbons from Sand Using Ionic Liquids – Technology Translation Plan – Option 1 Final Report,” Prepared for the National Science Foundation.
Hellmann, J. R., B. E. Scheetz, P. C. Painter, and B. G. Miller, (2012 June 28). “Application of Ionic Liquid Separation, Sintering and Melt Spheroidization Processing to the Manufacturing of Proppants from Drill Cuttings from the Marcellus Shale Gas Play Final Report,” Prepared for the Translational Research in Energy Support Program (TRESP) of the Ben Franklin Technology Partnership of Central and Northern Pennsylvania.
Painter, P. C., B. G. Miller, M. Sobkowiak, A. Choperena, and A. Lupinsky, (2012 March 25-29). “The Separation of Hydrocarbons from Sand and Other Minerals using Ionic Liquids,” American Chemical Society Spring 2012 National Meeting and Exposition, San Diego, California.