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Jeffrey performing experimental work in the Biofuels & Bioproducts Lab of PCGS

bethany philippidis

Bethany receiving a student research excellence award from USF for her work with microalgae (pictured with Dr. George Philippidis)

PCGS students co-author peer reviewed article in high-impact journal  


Two PCGS students, Jeffrey Cox and Bethany Loya, have achieved the high distinction of being co-authors of a peer-reviewed publication.  The article is entitled “Study of landfill leachate as a sustainable source of water and nutrients for algal biofuels and bioproducts using the microalga Picochlorum oculatum in a novel scalable bioreactor” and was just published in “Bioresource Technology”, a high-impact journal of renewable energy and biotechnology.

The microalgae research was conducted in PCGS’ Biofuels and Bioproducts Lab and outdoor facilities under the direction of co-authors Dr. Ioannis Dogaris and Dr. George Philippidis.  It was externally funded by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Culture Fuels Inc, and the Florida High Tech Corridor.

The goal of the research was to address the high water demand of the algae industry by cultivating microalgae in landfill-derived wastewater instead of freshwater.   Using a novel bioreactor developed by Dr. Philippidis’ team, the work showed that algae can successfully be cultivated in landfill wastewater at both pilot scale and commercial scale, hence improving the sustainability and cost-effectiveness of commercial algal biofuels and bioproducts.

Jeffrey shared: “Working on the study, which I envision as valuable research toward finding a viable path to sustainable biofuel, under the mentorship of Dr George Philippidis and Dr. Ioannis Dogaris provided me with an extremely valuable and unforgettable experience.  I look forward to applying all that I learned in a career focused on renewable energy research after graduating this spring with a master’s degree in Global Sustainability.”  Bethany added:  “Working on research that has significant implications for the future of sustainability has been exciting. It has been an honor to work alongside Jeffrey under the guidance of Dr. George Philippidis and Dr. Ioannis Dogaris. All research is important, because you never know what role it will play or what step it will be in the process of real change. However, for me, this research was done with a lot of anticipation and enthusiasm, knowing how crucial it is to create cost effective options for algal operations with the increasing scarcity of freshwater resources.”

The full publication can be viewed here: Click Here