Energy and Materials


Energy and the environment are arguably two of the most pressing challenges for the 21st century and they are closely inter-related. There are significant global environmental and resource supply issues with existing energy paths today. Global emission and fuel regulations, global fuel and power structure, energy security, and cost are driving new technology and alternative approaches. Improvement of energy supply and its use is vital for resource sustainability and energy security and to achieve reduction of greenhouse gases and urban pollution in order to sustain our environment.

In the UBC Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, a wide range of current research is providing knowledge and innovative solutions to many of these challenges. Key areas of energy research include:

  • The use of renewables such as biomass and solar,
  • Cleaner methods of using non-renewable energy such as oil and gas and unconventional resources such as gas hydrates,
  • Energy conversion using fuel cells and combustion processes and energy storage with fuels such as hydrogen and methane,  and electrochemical processes,
  • Treatment of energy related emissions including carbon dioxide capture and removal, and waste water treatment, energy efficiency and analysis, and
  • Energy materials designed and fabricated from the nanoscale to the macroscopic scale for different energy applications such as heterogeneous catalysis.

Our globally recognized and respected researchers are fully engaged in work to develop innovative, sustainable solutions to energy use and supply to preserve our environment.

For more information regarding Energy and Materials research contact:

Researchers Research Interest

Curtis P. Berlinguette
CO2 conversion and utilization, Solar Energy Conversion, Solar Fuels, Clean Hydrogen Production, Electrolysis

Xiaotao Bi
Fluidization, Reactor Design, Electrostatics, PEM Fuel Cells, Pollution Control, Biomass Processing, Green Engineering

Naoko Ellis
Fluidization and Multiphase Systems, Biomass Utilization, CO2 Capture, Transdisciplinary Research and Learning

Peter Englezos
Clathrate (gas) hydrate science, engineering and novel applications (energy storage and transport, gas separations, desalination), high-value papermaking and novel paper-based products; Carbon dioxide capture and storage; Natural gas hydrates and climate change

E. Johan Foster
Bioproducts, Cellulose Nanomaterials, Polymers, Biomaterials, Biomedical Devices, Fibers

John M. Frostad
Interfacial Phenomena, Functional Foods, Emulsions and Foams, Novel Instrumentation, Complex Fluids

Bhushan Gopaluni
Modeling and Experiment Design, Model Predictive Controllers, Identification for Control, Iterative Identification and Control, Data Analytics, Fault Detection and Diagnosis

Előd Gyenge
Electrochemical Engineering and Electrocatalysis, Fuel Cells, Batteries, Porous Electrodes, Interfacial Phenomena

Savvas G. Hatzikiriakos
Rheology of polymer melts, polymer blends and pastes, Non-Newtonian fluid mechanics, Polymer Processing, Surface Science and Superhydrophobicity

Anthony Lau
Organic waste-to-resource recovery and recycling, Biomass feedstock engineering, Bioconversion processes and systems, Composting, Anaerobic digestion, Odor control

Jim Lim
Biomass and fossil fuels; Spouted bed; Gas-particle system hydrodynamics, heat transfer; Hydrogen production

Mark Martinez
Fluid mechanics, flow visualization, multiphase flows and computational fluid dynamics with applications to industrial problems

Madjid Mohseni
Drinking water quality, Advanced oxidation, UV based water treatment and purification, Ion exchange processes, Biological drinking water treatment, Electrochemical water treatment processes

Vladan Prodanovic
Clean Energy Engineering Program (CEEN)
Thermodynamics, two-phase flow and heat transfer, jet impingement boiling, HVAC
Engineering education, project based learning, clean energy curriculum development

Orlando Rojas
Biobased Colloids and Materials, Renewable Nanomaterials, Bioproducts

Kevin Smith
Catalysis and kinetics focused on residue oil upgrading, natural gas upgrading, methane conversion and syngas conversion

Fariborz Taghipour
Artificial Photosynthesis, Solar Fuels, UV Photoreactors, Photo-Activated Sensors, Modeling of Chemical and Biochemical Reactors, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)

Heather Trajano
Biomass Conversion, Biorefinery, Pretreatment, Chemocatalysis, Pulp and Paper, Kinetic Modeling, Transport Phenomena

Chester Upham
Heterogeneous catalysis, clean energy, CO2-free chemical conversion, GHGs-to-fuels

David P. Wilkinson
Electrochemistry, electrocatalysis, electrochemical power sources, hydrogen production and storage, electrosynthesis, waste water and drinking water treatment, solar fuels, carbon dioxide and nitrogen conversion, clean and sustainable energy and water

Vikramaditya G. Yadav
Biocatalysis, Bioremediation, Bioprocess engineering, Drug delivery, Infectious disease pathogenesis & drug discovery, Green chemistry, Medical biotechnology, Metabolic engineering, Synthetic biology, Tissue engineering