The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Huber Named to Editorial Board

The Energy & Environmental Science journal has named prominent biofuel expert George Huber of our Chemical Engineering Department to its Editorial Board. Dr. Huber is one of the leading researchers in the field of biomass conversion. Energy & Environmental Science is a new journal linking all aspects of the chemical sciences relating to energy conversion and storage, alternative fuel technologies, and environmental science. The Energy & Environmental Science Editorial Board members are, according to the magazine, “high caliber international scientists from both academia and industry, and their research interests reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the journal."

Dr. Huber's research interest is in biomass conversion, with the objective of developing highly efficient and low-cost catalytic processes, catalytic materials, and reactors for biomass conversion to fuels and chemicals utilizing aqueous-phase processing. 

Huber, the John and Elizabeth Armstrong Professional Development Professor, has spent much of the past two years in the public eye, campaigning in print, in the electronic media, and in Congress for renewable biofuels as the foundation for a new energy economy. Last summer, the biofuels startup company Anellotech was granted exclusive rights to Huber’s patent-pending catalytic fast pyrolysis technology. Then Huber co-authored the cover story for the July 2009 Scientific American. On June 18, he did a Congressional briefing about “the road to the new energy economy.” This fall, he was featured on the Forbes Video Network and was the star of a five-minute National Science Foundation video for its online magazine.

Dr. Huber also produced a 2008 publication that served as a 187-page roadmap for making hydrocarbon biofuel into a viable and sustainable alternative to fossil fuel in this country. The publication combined the expertise of some 70 top scientists and engineers in the field of biofuels and was entitled, “Breaking the Chemical and Engineering Barriers to Lignocellulosic Biofuels: Next Generation Hydrocarbon Biorefineries.”

Among the varied funding sources supporting his well-publicized research has been a $400,000 CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation to pursue his revolutionary new method for making “green gasoline” from wood or grasses, and a $1.9 million grant from the Department of Defense for turning wood and corn waste products into fuel precursors. (June 2010)