Robert M. Scates, Ph.D.

Principal Consultant

Forensic Services

San Francisco/Concord


Dr. Scates is a graduate of the University of Houston, with a doctorate in Chemical Engineering. He has over 20 years experience in industrial and consulting assignments in the chemical, petrochemical, refining and nuclear industries. His background includes plant engineering and design, economics, construction, and operations, accident analysis and prevention, research and development, environmental evaluations, and environmental and industrial safety regulations.

Dr. Scates’ areas of expertise include reaction engineering, particularly in catalyzed systems; reactor, distillation column, heat transfer, and separations equipment design; process technology assessment and selection; process economic analysis and equipment costing; project scheduling, construction, and start-up; process operations support including equipment assessment and improvement and debottlenecking, and process safety assessments for new and existing facilities including audits and accident root cause analysis. His experience includes research and process/product development in laboratory, pilot plant, and industrial-scale operations.

Dr. Scates has performed research, modeled, and reported on the fate-and-transport of chemicals in the environment including measuring and estimating emissions from chemical plants, predicting their fate-and-transport in the environment via air, surface water and groundwater pathways, and estimating their impacts on the surrounding community.


• Chemical Engineering, B.S.: Texas A&M University (1987)

• Chemical Engineering, Ph.D.: University of Houston (2003)