Research & Initiatives
Meet the Experts
George Philippidis, Ph.D.
Dr. Philippidis is Associate Professor of Renewable Energy and has over 20 years of
experience in leading strategic business units in advanced biofuels and bioproducts.
He directs the Biofuels & Bioproducts Lab with a main focus on:
- Biofuels and bioproducts from vegetable oils, algae, and biomass
- Enzymatic and microbial process development
- Bioprocess modeling, scale-up, and commercialization
- Supply chain optimization and resiliency for the bioprocess industry
- Bioeconomy education and workforce development
Dr. Philippidis is the author of numerous articles and book chapters, has given several presentations and media interviews, and holds 11 US and world patents in cleantech. He leads the development and commercialization of cellulosic and algal biofuels, drop-in fuels, and value-added chemicals, as well as the integration and deployment of renewable energy systems. Dr. Philippidis works closely with the private sector, venture capital firms, and equity investors to bring clean technologies to the market place. He advises US and international companies and governments on biofuels and renewable power technologies, energy policy and trade, public-private partnerships, market development, intellectual property management and project financing.
Dr. Philippidis obtained his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota and his MBA from the University of Denver. Before joining USF, he served as Associate Director of the Applied Research Center at FlU in Miami, where he created and directed the Center's energy business. Previously, he was the Business Director at a subsidiary of Thermo Fisher Scientific, a Fortune 500 company in the Boston area, where he commercialized cleantech products. Dr. Philippidis started his career at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Denver, where he directed a joint venture between the Department of Energy (DOE) and Amoco Corporation in biofuel development and commercialization.
Ioannis Dogaris, Ph.D.
Dr. Dogaris is a postdoctoral researcher in renewable energy and manager of the Biofuels & Bioproducts Lab. His research interests and expertise include:
- Algae technologies
- Advanced biofuel production
- Enzymatic hydrolysis of biomass
- Microbial fermentation technologies
Luiza is a master's student at the Patel College of Global Sustainability specializing in Sustainable Energy. She holds a bachelor's degree in biofuel technology from the São Paulo State Technological College in Brazil. Her research focuses on the conversion of Brassica carinata oil and meal to biofuels and bioproducts and the pretreatment, enzymatic hydrolysis, and fermentation of sweet sorghum bagasse and other types of biomass to organic acids.
Ahmet Manisali, M.S.
Ahmet is a Ph.D. candidate in the Chemical and Biomedical Engineering Department with a joint appointment at the Patel College of Global Sustainability. He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Middle East Technical University in Turkey and an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology (FIT). His research focuses on (1) production of cosmetics (phospholipids) from microalgae, including algae cultivation, harvesting, and lipid extraction and quantification using a number of analytical techniques; and (2) process development and modeling for carinata oil conversion to biofuels and bioproducts.
Enlin is a M.S. candidate in the Chemical and Biomedical Engineering Department with a joint appointment at the Patel College of Global Sustainability. She holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tunghai University in Taiwan. Her research focuses on thermochemical pretreatment of cellulosic biomass (sweet sorghum), enzymatic hydrolysis, and fermentation for the production of renewable succininic acid from bacteria.
Shriyash Deshpande, M.S.
Shriyash is a researcher at the Chemical and Biomedical Engineering Department with a joint appointment at the Patel College of Global Sustainability. He holds an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from USF and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Pune, India.
His current research focuses on conversion of vegetable oils to biodiesel using supercritical technology. He has previously worked on bio-hydrogen production, solid oxide fuel cells, and sludge treatment.
Gaurav is a M.S. candidate in the Chemical and Biomedical Engineering Department with a joint appointment at the Patel College of Global Sustainability. He holds a Bachelor's of Technology in Biotechnology & Biochemical Engineering from Thapar University in India. His research focuses on the catalytic conversion of microalgal cell mass to light olefins (ethylene, propylene, and butylene) that can serve as renewable feedstocks for chemical manufacturing.
Bethany Loya, M.A.
Bethany is a Research Assistant at the Biofuels & Bioproducts Lab. She holds an M.A. in Global Sustainability from USF and a B.S. in Marine Science-Biology from the University of Tampa.
She has a diverse research background in dwarf seahorse response to global climate change, structural mechanics of shark jaws, shore-based theodolite tracking, and analysis of association patterns of delphinid species . Her current research focuses on algae cultivation for production of biofuels and bioproducts.
Michael Welch is a Research Associate at the Biofuels & Bioproducts Lab. He specializes in the design and manufacture of novel photobioreactors, cultivation of algae, and scale-up operations.
He got his start in renewable energy as an undergraduate research student at USF, where he researched the use of wastewater for fuel production from algae. He has a BS in Biochemistry from USF.