Mary Gilliam

Research Interest

Low Temperature Plasma Technology

Surface Treatments and Coatings

Particle and Fiber Treatments



B.S. Chemical Engineering, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 2001

Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 2006



Assistant Professor, Kettering University, Flint, MI, 2011-present

Plasma Technology Leader, Sabic Innovative Plastics, Wixom, MI, 2006-2011

Research Assistant, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, 2001-2006

Teaching Assistant, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, 2003-2005

Engineering Co-op, Anheuser Busch Companies, Inc., St. Louis, MO, 2000


Research Activities

Research projects include surface treatments and coatings using atmospheric plasma for a variety of applications on rigid substrates, particles, and fibers.  Atmospheric plasma offers an eco-friendly process that is fast, continuous, and can be applied to bring about a variety of properties.  The process can be used to improve adhesion, tailor hydrophobic or hydrophilic properties, increase barrier properties, increase scratch and abrasion resistance, improve biocompatibility, tailor bioactivity, reduce friction, enhance resistance to chemicals, and reach other goals.

The methods developed in our labs have targeted areas such as biomedical materials, particle treatments, lightweight materials, UV-blocking coatings, scratch and abrasion, barrier coatings, seeds, and functional coatings for consumer goods.  For each application, the process is modified for the size and dimensions of the part.  Chemical precursors and precursor formulations are selected for experimentation to develop a coating that meets the application requirements.



Farhat, S.; Gilliam, M.; Rabago-Smith, M.; Baran, C.; Walter, N.; Zand, A. Polymer Coatings for Biomedical Applications Using Low Temperature, Atmospheric Pressure Plasma. Surf. Coat. Tech. 2013, in press.

Gilliam, M.; Farhat, S.; Zand, A.; Stubbs, B.; Magyar, M.; Garner, G. Atmospheric Plasma Surface Modification of PMMA and PP Micro-Particles. Plasma Process. Polym. (under review).

Higuchi, K.; Gilliam, M.; Yamaya, M.; Organic Resin Laminate. U.S. Patent 8,361,607 B2, 2013.

Gilliam, M.; Farhat, S.; Magyar, M.; Stubbs, B. Method and Apparatus for Surface Chemical Functionalization of Powders and Nanoparticles. U.S. Patent Application No. 61/788120, filing date Mar. 15, 2013.

Gilliam, M. Polymer Surface Treatment and Coating Technologies. In Handbook of Manufacturing Engineering and Technology; Nee, A., Ed.; Springer, 2013.

Gilliam, M.; Ritts, A.; Yu, Q. The Mesh Disturbance Effects in a Low-Temperature Cascade Arc Torch for Surface Modification of Low Density Polyethylene. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2010, 118(2), 805-817.

Giliam, M.; Yu, Q. Low-Temperature Plasma Processes for Polymeric Surface Modification. in Encyclopedia of Chemical Processing; Lee, S., Ed.; Taylor & Francis, 2007.

Gilliam, M.; Yu, Q. Surface Modification of a Group of Polymers Using a Low Temperature Cascade Arc Torch. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2007, 105, 360-372.

Gilliam, M.; Yu, Q.; Yasuda, H. Plasma Polymerization Behavior of Fluorocarbon Monomers in Low-
Pressure AF and RF Discharges. Plasma Process. Polym. 2007, 4, 165-172.

Gilliam, M.; Yu, Q. Surface Characterization of Low-Temperature Cascade Arc Plasma–Treated Low-Density Polyethylene Using Contact Angle Measurements. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2006, 99, 2528-2541.


Contact Information

Email: mgilliam@kettering.edu

Phone: (810) 249-4043

Office: 2-224A AB