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Dr. Stephen Mezyk
Professor of Physical Chemistry
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
California State University at Long Beach
1250 Bellflower Blvd
Long Beach, CA, 90840, USA

Hall of Science, Room 358
email: Stephen.Mezyk@csulb.edu
ph. (562) 985-4649 
Full curriculum vitae (click here)

Research: Environmental/Analytical/Physical Chemistry

My major research interests involve using physical and analytical techniques to  study free radical reactions in environmental chemistry, nuclear  chemistry and  (to a small extent) biochemistry. Specifically I am concerned with with the  experimental study of kinetics, energetics, and  mechanisms of short-lived  (transient)  species such as ions, excited species and radicals in the aqueous  and the gas phases.
Some major specific projects that we are currently working on are:

1) Advanced Oxidation Process remediation of chemically contaminated waters.  We are interested in using highly energetic radicals such as hydroxyl radicals, hydrated electrons, sulfate radicals  and chlorine atoms generated directly in water to remove chemical contaminants from treated wastewaters intended for reuse (more)

2) Chemistry of cancer.  Many chemicals are known or are suspected to cause cancer, however, their reactions and mechanisms under physiological conditions have not be determined. We are interested in how radical reactions are involved in these processes (more)  

3) Radiation-induced chemistry of ligands used in nuclear waste reprocessing.  We are currently investigating how alpha and gamma radiation degrade the ligands used in nuclear waste reprocessing (more)  

4) Complexation kinetics of lanthanide ions in the aqueous and organic phase.  A new project we have just started is the kinetics of ligand complexation and decomplexation of lanthanide and actinide ions under solvent extraction process-scale conditions.(more)

External Research Funding at CSULB (M$8.1) from:    
  • Department of Energy NEUP (4 grants)
  • Research Corporation (2 grants)
  • Water Reuse Foundation (3 grants)
  • Idaho National Laboratory (9 contracts, 1 grant)
  • Brookhaven National Laboratory (1 contract)
  • Argonne National Laboratory (1 contract)
  • Orange County Water District (8 contracts)

CSULB Student Research Funding (K$333) from:    
  • Arnold and Mabel Beckman Scholarships (8)
  • CSULB Women and Philanthropy Scholarships (12)
  • CSULB HHMI program (4)
  • CSULB RISE program (6)
  • CSULB MARC (3)
  • Multiple CSULB Chemistry Department scholarships


B.Sc. Hons. Physical Chemistry/Mathematics, University of Melbourne, Australia, 1981

Ph.D. Chemistry, University of Melbourne, Australia, 1990

Research Summary : I am a Physical Chemist with interests centered in energy and the environment, particularly the free radical kinetic and mechanistic chemistry involved in environmental remediation of contaminated water systems, nuclear waste separation, storage, and remediation, and the biochemical activagtion mechanisms of carcinogenesis.

 - 189 peer-reviewed publications (see also CSULB Publications)
 - 365 invited and student conference presentations
 - 16 current research students (see also Current Students)

RadKEM Research Student Honors and Awards at CSULB (want to join?)
 - 8 national-merit Arnold and Mable Beckman Scholars Awards
 - 5 College of Natural Science and Mathematics Outstanding Graduates
 - 4 MD/PhD and 1 DVM/PhD students
 - 2 CSULB Outstanding Undergraduate Research Students

Mezyk CSULB Honors and Awards

2017: GRIF (Grant-Related Faculty Member) Award
2017: CSULB Academic Affairs for Outstanding Faculty Mentor for Student Engagement 
2016: GRIF (Grant-Related Faculty Member) Award
2016: CSULB Alumni Association Most Valuable Professor
2016: CSULB Provost’s Award for Impact Accomplishment of the Year in Research
2015: GRIF (Grant-Related Faculty Member) Award
2014: CSULB Outstanding Professor Award
2012: CSULB Academic Affairs for Outstanding Faculty Mentor for Student Engagement 

2012: CSULB Alumni Association Most Valuable Professor
2011: CSULB Alumni Association Most Valuable Professor
2010: College of Natural Science and Mathematics Award for Excellence 
2010: Los Angeles Area Emmy Award for Instructional Programming.
2010: CSULB Provost’s Award for Impact Accomplishment of the Year in Research
2009: CSULB’s Alumni Association Most Valuable Professor 
2008: CSULB's Distinguished Faculty Scholarly and Creative Achievement Award
2007: CSULB University Distinguished Faculty Teaching Award

Other Positions:                

05/2015 – present   Consultant – International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria

05/1986 – present   Visiting Scholar Appointment, Radiation Laboratory, Notre Dame, IN 

06/2002 – present   Visiting Scientist Appointment, Brookhaven National Laboratory, NY

02/2012 – present   Joint Appointment, Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID


YouTube Video

YouTube Video

Principle CSULB Courses Taught
  • CHEM111B - General Chemistry II (Kinetics, Equilibria, Thermodynamics, Electrochemistry)
  • CHEM371B - Physical Chemistry II (Quantum Mechanics, Spectroscopy - calculus based)
  • GEOL191  Air and Water Pollution (chemistry of Environmental Remediation)
  • CHEM377A - Physical Chemistry I (Thermodynamics and Kinetics)
  • CHEM377B - Physical Chemistry II (Quantum Mechanics, Spectroscopy                                                                                            
  • CHEM451 Instrumental Analysis Laboratory
  • CHEM574   - Selected topics in Physical Chemistry (Graduate course in Kinetics & Dynamics)