Joelle Frechette

Joelle Frechette is an associate professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Her research on interfacial phenomena and adhesion has contributed to a better understanding of the behavior of nanomaterials and soft matter.

Frechette aims to understand and control solid-fluid interactions in soft materials. Her group designs materials by harnessing the properties of solid and fluid interfaces for application in the areas of adhesion, separation, sensors, wetting, and optics. Her experimental approach includes the development of novel tools and instrumentation, modeling and simulations, and surface characterization.

She is currently involved with a number of projects. In the broad area of soft materials, her group is working on the performance of adhesives under extreme environmental conditions, bio-inspired gripping and locomotion, and gel mechanics. In the broad area of colloidal materials, she is working on the dynamic of particulate transport at fluid interfaces, bio-inspired hierarchical colloidal assembly, particle-stabilized emulsions, and microfluidic tools for particle separation.

Insights gathered from Frechette’s research could lead to the development of amphibian devices that move underwater, hierarchical material, and overall improvements in micro- and nanoscale engineering. Her work has been funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), 3M Corporation, Department of Energy, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, American Chemical Society (ACS), and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

Frechette is the recipient of an ONR Young Investigator Award, NSF CAREER Award, 3M Untenured Faculty Award, and the W. H. Huggins Excellence in teaching award. She was also named a Fellow of the American Chemical Society. She is a member of the Adhesion Society, ACS Colloid & Surface Chemistry Division, and serves on the editorial advisory board for the ACS journal Langmuir.

Frechette earned a bachelor’s degree in Materials Engineering from Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal in 1998 and a master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University in 2000. She graduated from Princeton with a PhD in Chemical Engineering and Materials Science in 2005, followed by a year working as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. She joined Johns Hopkins in 2006. Frechette currently serves as the director of master’s studies for the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering