Professor Grant Allen, Chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry, is this year’s recipient of the LeSueur Memorial Award, an honour presented by The Chemical Institute of Canada that recognizes the technical excellence in either a university/research institute or industrial setting in Canada.
Professor Allen’s area of research is environmental bioprocess engineering, with particular application to the treatment of aqueous and gaseous emissions and in adding value to wastes by utilizing them for the production of energy, materials and chemicals. He received considerable support and collaborated with the Pulp and Paper industry and led several environmental research consortia involving both faculty and students from a range of disciplines and industrial partners from Canada and abroad (e.g. USA, Brazil, Japan, Sweden, Finland and New Zealand).
Professor Allen’s applied research in the areas of waste treatment technologies has seen significant shifts in sector process approaches, such as minimization of organochlorine contaminants, use of biofiltration for air emissions, and the emergence of anaerobic digestion as a viable, large-scale solution to pulp and paper effluent treatment. Most recently, he has focused on using bioprocessing to produce value-added materials and energy from waste, including the development of algae biofilm bioreactors to generate biofuel from carbon dioxide and wastewater, and extracting adhesives and surfactants from waste biosludge.