My research interests

Biomass Renewable Cycle

Bio3 = Bioproducts + Bioenergy + Biofuels

From Diversified Biorefineries to a Sustainable Bioeconomy

My research interests are centered on the conversion of biomass into liquid fuels, energy and chemicals primarily through the use of thermochemical conversion technologies like gasification and pyrolysis with the ultimate goal of producing refinery -ready intermediates or advanced fuels and chemical building blocks that easily fit into existing chemical processes. Drawing on the successful model of the petrochemical industry, it is evident that the success of future biorefineries will require coupling biofuel and bioenergy production with co-production of a diverse portfolio of high value platform chemicals. One approach in achieving this model in future biorefineries is to produce advanced biocrudes compatible with petrorefineries and derive platform biomass derived chemicals that can easily and seemingly replace petrochemicals. The benefits of this approach are multifold. Economically, it is attractive as it allows to save in capital investment by using the vast existing petroleum refinery infrastructure. Technically, this approach reduces the time- todeployment of new bio-based technologies by using proven and efficient downstream processes. My research program can be grouped into three areas: 1) fundamental investigation of biomass thermochemical breakdown with the goal of understanding the evolution of desirable and undesirable species; 2) design, modeling and optimization of Dr. Nourredine Abdoulmoumine thermochemical conversion processes and; 3) development of infrastructure ready advanced biofuels and bioproducts. These three areas are complementary and provide necessary information in the development of implementable biobased technologies for biofuels and bioproducts. For example, fundamental understanding of chemical processes is sine qua non to design, modeling and optimization of thermochemical conversion processes just as design, modeling and optimization are vital to deploying technologies for infrastructure-ready bio-based products. Specifically, current interests include developing technologies to remove tar, ammonia, and sulfur from biomass gasification derived syngas, developing new biomass pyrolysis technologies to convert biomass to transportation fuels utilizing the existing infrastructure for fuel production and distribution and to upgrade syngas and high quality pyrolysis products to syncrude and advanced biocrude with properties similar to petroleum crude. The breadth of my research interests creates natural collaborative opportunities with scientists and engineers dealing with biomass or other renewable resources. I am particularly interested in collaborating with investigators seeking to utilize byproduct streams of pyrolysis and gasification to synthesize high value biomaterials.