Biorefining Outreach

TIES: Training, Internships,
Exchanges, & Scholarships




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Tapan J. Purakayastha, Ph.D.

Tapan J. Purakayastha, Ph.D., a Principal Scientist, Division of Soil Science and Agricultural Chemistry, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi. Presently, he is working as a Fulbright Senior Research Fellow with Prof. K. C. Das and his group in Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program at the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, Driftmier Engineering Center, University of Georgia, Athens. He has worked in research, outreach, and teaching related to soil carbon sequestration for mitigating climate change for over a decade focusing on soil and crop management practices influencing safe storage of carbon in soil. His research interest is on production of biochar from agricultural crop residues, their characterization and further application in soil for carbon sequestration and improvement in soil fertility and productivity. His group is also working on remediation of arsenic contaminated soils of West Bengal, India. Dr Purakayastha worked with Drs. David Huggins and Jeff Smith at the USDA-ARS, Washington State University, WA, USA in 2000-2001 on inversion tillage induced soil carbon sequestration under BOYSCAST Fellowship of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. He has published 32 research papers in peer-reviewed national and international journals of repute, four books, eight book chapters, eleven reviews and popular articles and about sixty conference papers. Dr Purakayastha teaches Biology and Biochemistry of Soil Processes, Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition and Radiotracer Techniques. He guided two MSc and four PhD students.

Krystyna Malinska, Ph.D.

Krystyna Malinska, Ph.D., a researcher at the Institute of Environmental Engineering at Czestochowa University of Technology, Poland, was selected for the 2007 Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellows Program. The primary goal of this program is provision of training and collaborative research opportunities in international agricultural science, leadership and policy for Polish scientists, faculty and policy makers. For 2007 the main focus of the program is the development of cellulose-based biomass for biofuels and production of ethanol.

Krystyna is spending five weeks at the Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program laboratories at UGA. The main aim of her research project, mentored by Dr. K.C. Das, is production of ethanol from ligninocellulosic biomass (e.g. forest residues, variety of grasses, biodegradable fraction of municipal waste, etc.) with special focus on the pretreatment technologies, such as acid and enzymatic hydrolysis, supercritical extraction, and ozonation. Additionally, she is learning about the fuel economy in the USA, regulations and incentives for biofuels production, and also cost-effectiveness of biofuel production in the USA.

DOWNLOAD:Program Proposal

Amphol Aworn, Ph.D.

Amphol Aworn, Ph.D. student in Environmental Technology from
the Joint Graduate School of Energy and Environment, King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi, Thailand, is spending six months at the Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program laboratories at UGA. He is a visiting scientist through a scholarship from the Royal Golden Jubilee (RGJ) Ph.D. Program under Thailand Research Fund.

He is conducting research on methods for preparation of activated carbon from corncob and bagasse bottom ash and using it for ethylene glycol adsorption. The objective of the work is to study possibility for biomass derived activated carbon and substitute commercial activated carbon (made from coconut-shell). Additionally he is developing an understanding of the mechanism of adsorption for ethylene glycol by this activated carbon.

While at the Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program laboratories, Amphol is working on preparation and upgrading of bio-oil from corncob and coir fiber. He says "In the future, I am very interested in the development and implementation of bio-oil as coproduct while developing activated carbon production processes. I think this program at UGA will enrich my technical skills and knowledge of thermochemical processes."

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