Daphne Pappas Interview

Dr. Daphne Pappas Founder of Science and Engineering Cafe

Dr. Daphne Pappas
Founder of Science and Engineering Cafe

Exclusive Interview with Daphne Pappas

July 17, 2015


Question 1:  What is the “Scientist/Engineer of the Week” page about?

Daphne: I have been following science journals, newsletters and social media related to plasma science for many years. All these information sources provide information on the research work of the plasma community but do not turn the spotlight on the individual researchers. My goal through this page and website is to provide a more personal view of the accomplished researchers and promote networking. Each week, a plasma scientist or engineer will be featured. I plan on using my professional network to identify potential interviewees but I am open to the visitors’ suggestions.


Question 2:  What should a colleague expect after he/she receives an invitation to participate as the “Scientist/Engineer of the week”? 

Daphne: The selected person is expected to do the following:

– Submit a short biographic sketch which will appear on the webpage

– Submit an image that describes his/her research

– Submit a headshot (optional)

– Provide answers to 5 interview questions. The questions will be submitted by visitors of the website.


The name of the guest Scientist/Engineer of the week will be announced a week prior to the interview on the “news” page to allow the submission of questions by the website visitors.


Question 3:  In your opinion, what is the future of plasma science?

Daphne: I see a “glowing” future (chuckles…). I have always been involved in promoting the applications of the technology. The growth of semiconductor materials using plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) has found a steady market. The deposition of coatings using the plasma spray method has also been widely commercialized.  A topic that is generating a lot of interest today is Plasma Medicine, with research focusing on the application of atmospheric plasma technology for a variety of applications including sterilizing surfaces and treating cancer cells.

While most of the work is primarily conducted by academic groups, the number of industrial groups involved in the commercialization of the technology is still very low- at least here in the United States.


Question 4:  Which is your favorite paper written by other authors?

Daphne:  It’s hard to choose only one…. During the first year of my PhD studies, I came across a thesis from the group of Farzi Arefi-Khonsari, who I was lucky to have as one of my mentors. The topic of dissertation was related to the modification of polymers using low pressure plasmas and was closely related to my work. However, the thesis was written in French and I did not speak the language (and still don’t!). I was so intrigued and interested in the thesis that I spent hours translating the dissertation into English. I still remember that “champ electrique” means “electric field”.


Question 5:  What are your expectations for “The Science and Engineering Cafe?”

Daphne: I will always continue to offer my services to support the community and help promote the technology through this website or other forums. I continue to serve on the executive committee of the advanced surface engineering division (ASED) of the American vacuum society (AVS) and the AVS diversity and inclusion committee.  I see this as my way of “giving back” to the community that has given me so much!


I would like to thank my husband Tony for his support (and interview!).

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