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Voices of the Future of Canadian Chemical Engineering Session

Tuesday, October 25, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM PDT

Electrosynthesis of renewable fuels and chemicals

Cao Thang Dinh

Cao Thang Dinh

Queen’s University

Cao Thang Dinh is an assistant professor of Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University. He received his master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Chemical Engineering from Laval University in 2010 and 2014, respectively. From 2014 to 2019, Dr. Dinh was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto. His research focuses on developing electrochemical processes for renewable fuel and chemical production from carbon dioxide, water and renewable electricity. Dr. Dinh’s works have laid the foundation for scaling up this technology by CERT System Inc, a spinoff from the University of Toronto. Dr. Dinh is the co-inventor of five patents and have published 90 papers in prestigious journals. His works have been cited over 15,000 times (h-index = 57; Google Scholar). In 2021, he was named as a “Highly Cited Researcher” in the field of Chemistry by Web of Science. Dr. Dinh is a recipient of the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology Rising Star Award, which recognizes outstanding early career researchers in nanotechnology worldwide. In 2022, Dr. Dinh was awarded the Prize for Excellence in Research – the highest internal research award at Queen’s University.

The Path Toward a Sustainable Future: Our Roles in Chemical Engineering Education and Research

Clémence Fauteux Lefebvre

Clémence Fauteux-Lefebvre

University of Ottawa

As a recipient of a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship, Professor Clémence Fauteux-Lefebvre received her PhD in chemical engineering from Université de Sherbrooke in 2015. Her graduate studies were on catalyst synthesis and material functionalization for environmental applications. Subsequently, she pursued her work on process and material characterization with a postdoctoral fellowship within the Pfizer Chair on Process Analytical Technologies in Pharmaceutical Engineering. She joined the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Ottawa in July 2017 as an assistant professor.

Professor Clémence Fauteux-Lefebvre’s current research focuses on sustainable multifunctional materials, nanostructured catalysts and reactor design for environment and clean energy applications, with emphasis on blue hydrogen production, biomass valorization and air pollution mitigation. Prof. Fauteux-Lefebvre has supervised over 30 students from undergraduate to PhD. She is the past-Chair of the Energy Division of the Chemical Institute of Canada and an associate director of The Ottawa-Carleton Institute for Environmental Engineering.

White Graphene: Clearing the Way for Sustainable Development Goals

Hadis Zarrin

Hadis Zarrin

Toronto Metropolitan University

Dr. Hadis Zarrin, holding a PhD from University of Waterloo (2015), is an Assistant Professor at the Chemical Engineering Department at Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU)formerly known as Ryerson University – since July 2017. She is the Chair of Energy Division at Chemical Institute of Canada and an Investigator at NSERC CREATE Hybrid Thermal Electric Microgrid (HYTEM) network. She is also a Principal Investigator at FIBRE—an academic research platform in the field of smart textile-based technologies under The Kite Research Institute banner at Toronto Rehab. At TMU, Zarrin has established the Nanoengineering Laboratory for Energy and Environmental Technologies (NLEET) group to collaborate with diverse academic teams and industries and conduct the research and development of smart and multifunctional nano-engineered materials towards different applications aligned with different UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs): clean energy storage and conversion systems (UN SDG#7 and 13), smart healthcare wearable and textiles (UN SDG#3), biosensors (UN SDG#3), and environmental technologies (UN SDG#6). Her research contributions have resulted in one patent, three book chapters, >24 peer-reviewed published journal papers, >28 peer-reviewed conference abstracts and proceedings, and the launch of two startups with considerable attention by >1423 citations to date (until July 10, 2022).

Smart materials from Canadian bioproducts

Johan Foster

Johan Foster

University of British Columbia

Johan Foster is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (CHBE) at the Faculty of Applied Science at UBC and holds the Canfor/NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Advanced Bioproducts. Previously, he held a position in Materials Science and Engineering at Virginia Tech University and prior to that at the Adolphe Merkle Institute in Fribourg, Switzerland. Dr. Foster has co-authored over 120 original research papers in high-impact journals, as well as 3 patents. His research focuses on the design, synthesis and engineering of bio-inspired functional polymers and nanocomposites, including nanocellulose. Novel bio-derived materials developed through his research are finding use or commercial potential in cartilage tissue engineering, in drug-release formulations to improve tissue response to mechanically adaptive cortical implants, in fragrance release technologies, and in highly novel photo-switchable nanocomposite materials, amongst a range of many promising applications. Dr. Foster has received as a PI or co-applicant over $10 million CDN in competitively peer-reviewed funding and has trained 75 HQP in the past five years alone. He is an active and highly visible member of the forest bioproducts research community, having been invited to present at over 40 conferences in the past 5 years. In the past year he was recognized by his peers with two major international awards: the Kingfa Young Investigator by the American Chemical Society Cellulose Division (2019), and the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Nanotechnology Division Mid-Career Award (2020). Both awards recognized Dr. Foster’s world leading research in the areas of cellulosic materials by international organizations.

Johan serves as Co-Chair of the nanotechnology division of the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry, and was co-chair and organizer of TAPPI NANO 2016. He is a member of four peer reviewed journal editorial boards. He is an expert for the European Research Commission (ERC) Marie Curie Innovative Training Networks (ITN), an expert for International Organization for Standardization (ISO), ISO/TC 229 WG 2 and is the official departmental evaluator, University of Ghana, Department of Biomedical Engineering.