Scientific Advisors

Nano Hydrophobics has formed a team of active, participating advisors, each selected to bring deep subject knowledge and specific expertise to the firm's research activities.


Colin Cerretani, Ph.D.

Thermal Dynamics


Colin Cerretani is an instructor in the Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Department at UC Berkeley, where he runs the senior Unit Operations laboratory. His course spans all disciplines of chemical engineering from mass and heat transfer to fluid mechanics, reaction engineering, and separations processes. Colin’s experimental and modeling expertise lies primarily in heat and mass transfer, but he has also worked on the dynamics of thin-film spreading and dewetting. Colin received his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University in 2007 before heading west to complete his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at UC Berkeley. 




Yusuf Z. Menceloglu, Ph.D

Polymer Chemistry


Yusuf Menceloglu is currently the Dean of the Engineering and Natural Sciences Department at Sababci University in Istanbul.  Professor Menceloglu's research activities in functional polymers are focused on nano-materials, composites, reactions and supercritical carbon dioxide.  After completing his post-doctoral research at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, he served as the Research and Development Manager, and later, the Deputy General Technical Manager of Gemsan Corporation.  Dr. Menceloglu holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Istanbul Technical University in Turkey.




Susan J. Miller, Ph.D.

Fluid Dynamics


Susan J. Muller is currently Associate Dean of the Graduate Division, and Professor of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, at the University of California, Berkeley.  Professor Muller’s research activities are related to fluid mechanics, polymer processing, rheology, and microfluidics.   After working at Schlumberger Cambridge Research and AT&T Bell Laboratories, she joined the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1991.  Recent work has focused on drag reducing polymers, the hydrodynamic stability of Taylor-Couette flows of complex fluids, and the design of microfluidic devices to trap and manipulate DNA, vesicles, and other microscale objects.  Muller holds a B.S.E. in chemical engineering from Princeton University, and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from M.I.T.  



Ameen K. Saafir, M.S.

Thin Films Coating Expert


Ameen Saafir is a technical advisor assisting with wet coating technology development.  He has over 10 years of experience coating thin films over large areas for electronic applications, using a wide variety of techniques.  After completing graduate work at Stanford focused on organic light emitting diode (OLED) materials and processes, his passion for process development led him to R&D positions at Samsung Electronics and DuPont Displays, where he played a key role in developing solution-processed OLED technology.  Ameen currently leads the wet coating effort at a Bay Area electrochromic window startup.  He has Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in materials science and engineering from Stanford University.




Frantisek Svec, Ph.D.

Polymer Chemistry


Frank Svec is currently a consultant, a guest lecturer at universities in China, Sweden and Czechoslovakia, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Separation Science, and President of the California Separation Science Society.   Dr. Svec's research is focused on macroporous polymers of different shapes such as beads and monoliths, for their use in applications including supports for solid phase chemistry, gas and liquid chromatography, enzyme immobilization, and microfluidics.  After his post-doctoral work, he was a visiting scientist at the University of Karlsruhe in Germany, department head at the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry at the Czech Academy of Sciences, and a visiting scholar at the University of California - Berkeley.  In 2005, he became the Facility Director of the Organic and Macromolecular Synthesis Facility of the Molecular Foundry, the nano-science laboratory located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  In 2008, he received the American Chemical Society's award for chromatography.  Svec holds a B.S. In Chemistry and a Ph.D. in polymer chemistry from the Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague.




Matt Bradley, M.S.

Test Instrumentation System Expert

Bradley Technologies, Inc.


Matt has over 20 years of experience developing automated test systems for a wide variety of industries.  He is a National Instruments Certified LabVIEW developer and has traveled extensively to support his projects.  Previous clients include large companies such as Cisco, Agilent, Siemens Medical, and General Dynamics.  Projects have included high speed, high volume manufacturing as well as intensive research and development systems.  He has also helped develop products for a number of small companies and startups.  Matt has a bachelor of Arts degree in Physics from Cornell University, and a Masters In Science in Mechanical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University.



Strategic Advisor



Cliff Detz, Ph.D.




Cliff is the principal in Innoventure, a consultancy that provides consultation and advisory services to start up companies, venture capital groups and corporations.


Cliff was the founding and senior member of Chevron Technology Ventures LLC, the venture capital unit of Chevron Corporation.  Cliff led Chevron Technology Venture’s investments in numerous technology companies, and he represented Chevron on the boards of these companies. As manager of Chevron’s Corporate Strategic Research Program, Cliff developed  and negotiated numerous technology relationships with universities, national laboratories and industrial companies. He has managed research and development in catalysis, refining processes, separations, minerals processing and environmental technology. 


He currently chairs the Selection Committee of the North Bay Angels, is a member of the Steering Committee of the Venture Greenhouse, an early stage incubator. He is on the Advisory Board for Cool Planet Energy Systems, EMBCube and Nano Hydrohphobic. Previously he was on the Advisory Boards of Oryxe Energy and a Director of American Bio-diesel Corp. and Air Ion Devices.


Cliff has been a member and served in advisory positions of organizations including the National Venture Capital Association, the National Petroleum Council Industry Technology Needs Study, the U.S. Department of Energy Refining Partnership Technology Initiative, the Industrial Research Institute External Research Directors Network, and the Policy Advisory Board of UCLA Center for Clean Technologies.  He has a B.A. in Chemistry from Brown University and a PhD. in Chemical Physics from University of Chicago.



Industry Advisors



L.J. Aspinall



Mr. Aspinall has gained thirty years of technical experience in the industrial water treatment industry with a primary focus on industrial manufacturing water treatment.  His areas of expertise include refining, styrene, ethylene, polyetheylene, polypropylene, PVC/VCM, ammonia, gasfractionation, utility operations, municipal water and wastewater treatment.



Richard Aull, P.E.

Director of Engineering/Application & International Product Support



Bretwood Industries is recognized as a global leader in film fill media for cooling towers.  Since 1984, Brentwood has provided over 100 million cubic feet of plastic sheet media and reklated products for cooling towers and other applications. Its manufacturing standards, raw materials, and performance testing result in field-proven products recognized for superior performance and long service.


Mr. Aull also serves as a Vice Chair of the Performance and Technology Committee and the Multi Agancy Testing Committee of the Cooling Technology Institute.


Bob Cunningham

Vice President



Bob has almost 40 years of water treatment experience across a broad range of applications and industries. He holds BS and M.B.A. degrees from the University of Pittsburgh, and has held a variety of technical, management and marketing positions in the water treatment industry.


Bob’s specialties include industrial cooling and boiler water, water preparation and waste water treatment. Bob has a special talent for solving difficult problems, and for working together with vendors and facility personnel to optimize water system operations.



Legal Advisors

Carole H. Bellis, Esq.




Corporate Secretary



Mergers & Acquisitions; Joint Ventures & Strategic Alliances; Corporate Governance; Emerging Companies



Clean Energy & Technology; Health & Life Sciences; Medical & Surgical Devices


Carole Bellis practices corporate and securities law and focuses on corporate formation, debt and equity financings, mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions. She represents a large portfolio of early to exit stage companies in the life sciences, clean technology and software sectors which she advises during the rapid growth period from inception through seed and venture financings, product research and development, to strategic partnerships and commercialization and eventual exit by way of an acquisition or initial public offering. Ms. Bellis regularly advises boards of directors and senior management on matters of corporate governance, securities issuances, executive compensation and employment matters, intellectual property protection, joint ventures, commercial agreements and strategic transactions. She also represents founders and incubators engaged in technology spin-offs and investment funds with respect to fund formation, limited liability company administration and fund management. Her M&A experience includes domestic and cross border transactions, stock purchases, asset based transactions, spin-offs and going private transactions.


Joseph R. Snyder Ph.D., Esq.




Services: Intellectual Property, Patent Prosecution & Counseling

Joseph Snyder is the Managing Partner of the firm's Walnut Creek office. He focuses his practice on patent prosecution and counseling, emphasizing patent drafting, patent procurement, client counseling and opinion writing, primarily in the chemical arts, biotechnology, life sciences and clean technology. He counsels clients on planning and portfolio analysis for patent protection, including strategic review of technologies' commercial potential, enforcement of patent rights and defense of infringement allegations. Dr. Snyder represents U.S. and foreign companies, such as pharmaceutical companies, diagnostic laboratories, universities and start-ups in all areas of intellectual property counseling and protection.


His technology experience includes small molecules, pharmaceutical formulations, drug delivery technologies, medical diagnostics, nucleic acid assays, nucleic acid sequencing technologies, dyes and clean technology, such as fuel cells.  He conducts and performs due diligence investigations in connection with commercial transactions, such as mergers, acquisitions and the establishment of strategic business alliances. These investigations involve intellectual property including patents, technology licenses, acquisition agreements and asset purchase agreements. Dr. Snyder advises on the creation of start-ups and their patent portfolio development. He coordinates and negotiates the transfer and licensing of intellectual property as it relates to office of technology transfer agreements, collaborative/sponsored research agreements and other transfer agreements.



Joe C. Hao Ph.D., Esq.




Services: Intellectual Property, Patent Prosecution & Counseling


Industries: Chemical; Health & Life Science; Pharmaceuticals


Dr. Joe C. Hao focuses his practice on preparing and prosecuting patent applications and assisting clients with formulating international patent filing and prosecution strategies, freedom to operate analyses, due diligence reviews, invalidity/non-infringement opinions, and patent portfolio management. Dr. Hao's experience spans numerous disciplines and industries, including neuroscience, molecular and cellular biology, genetics, drug formulations, drug delivery, stem cells, pharmaceuticals, diagnostic and therapeutic methods, and antibody and nucleic acid-based therapies. Dr. Hao represents universities as well as a variety of start-up and publicly-traded companies in the biotechnology industry located in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. As Counsel in Asia, Dr. Hao facilitates the development of relationships with existing and new clients located across Asia.


Dr. Hao conducted independent research on the characterization of the molecular mechanisms of axon guidance and branching as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Predoctoral Fellow at the University of California, San Francisco. He has also worked as a paper reporter for Genome Biology, covering the latest advances in genomic research. Dr. Hao has authored and co-authored articles in peer-reviewed journals and has presented his research at scientific conferences. Previously, he worked as a patent agent and technical advisor at Townsend and Townsend and Crew. During law school, Dr. Hao was a Lead Content Editor of the Santa Clara Computer and High Technology Law Journal and focused his studies on intellectual property law and related fields.





Robert Borelli, C.P.A.

Managing Director

Robert L. Borelli, CPA


Robert L. Borelli is a certified public accountant who provides his services to Burlingame and surrounding areas. Mr. Borelli specializes in tax preparation and general financial planning.