Prof. Christopher Hebling
Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems

Prof. Christopher Hebling is the Director of the Division Energy Technology and Systems, Business Division Hydrogen Technologies at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems, Freiburg, Germany. He studied physics and worked in the field of thin-film silicon solar cells followed by micro energy technologies before he entered the hydrogen technologies. With a staff of like 100 scientists, engineers and students, research and development in technologies like PEM electrolyzers and fuel cell systems, thermochemical catalytical processes as well as energy system modellings are being performed. Prof. Christopher Hebling holds like 150 journal and conference publications and is reviewer of national and international research programs. He is board member of the "National Organization for Fuel Cells and Hydrogen" NOW, the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence "Integrated Energy Systems", the Fraunhofer Network "Hydrogen Economy", the International Advisory Board of the "Hydrogen South Africa" Flagship Program of the DSI, the "Energy Storage Europe" conference, and various international conferences on hydrogen technologies.






PEM and AEM water electrolysis: a critical overview (Session A1)

Prof. Dmitri Bessarabov
HySA Infrastructure Center of Competence

The Director of HySA Infrastructure Center of Competence, Prof Dmitri Bessarabov, was recruited for the position from Canada in 2010. He obtained his Master’s degree in Chemistry in Moscow and in 1996 his doctoral degree from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. He worked for Kvaerner Group, Ballard Power Systems and AFCC (Daimler and Ford JV) in Canada. He is an internationally-recognised visionary with extensive industrial and academic decision-making experience. Current responsibilities include: building effective teams with deep technical capabilities and managing these teams. Leadership and Management in the National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Programme (HySA). Providing excellence in management, research and product development. HySA Infrastructure Business Plan and Road Map development and implementation. He holds SA NRF rating C1, current Scopus H index 20. He is an expert in the area of hydrogen and electro-catalytic membrane systems for energy applications and fuel cells. Passionate about LOHC technology for hydrogen storage, PEM fuel cells, electrolysers, membranes, MEAs and catalyst layers structures.


Effect of volumetric organic loading rate on biohydrogen production in an Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket reactor using cheese whey as a substrate (Session B5)

Prof. Germán Buitrón Méndez
National Autonomous University of Mexico

Germán Buitrón is Chemical Engineering by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and PhD in Water Treatment Engineering by the National Institute of Applied Sciences -Toulouse, France. He is the Head of the Laboratory for Research on Advanced Processes for Water Treatment at the Institute of Engineering, UNAM Queretaro campus, and Professor of the Graduate Environmental Engineering program. The current research lines and interests are Bio-energy production from liquid and solid wastes (methane, hydrogen, bioelectrochemical systems); Value-added products from industrial wastewater; Microalgae-bacteria systems for wastewater treatment. He is a member of the Mexican Academy of Sciences and the International Water Association, participating in the management committee of the Specialist Groups Chemical Industries, Anaerobic Digestion and Small Water and Wastewater systems. He is Editor in Chief of the Inter-American Association Journal of Engineering and Environmental Sciences.



CO2 reduction on Mo2C (Session A5)

Prof. Nico Fischer
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Cape Town

Nico Fischer obtained his MSc in Chemical Engineering from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in 2007 and his PhD in heterogeneous catalysis from the University of Cape Town (UCT) in 2011. He subsequently worked as researcher at BASF SE in Germany developing novel catalysts in the field of selective oxidation. In 2014 he returned to the Catalysis Institute at UCT, initially as Senior Research Officer and since 2018 as Associate Professor. At UCT, his research focuses on the thermocatalytic conversion of synthesis gas including the activation of CO2 in processes related to the wider field of Power-to-X. Current projects include the development of novel ‘empowered’ support materials for the iron based Fischer-Tropsch synthesis, the study of transition metal alloys and metal oxide tandem catalysts for the co-activation of CO2 and small chain alkanes as well as the use of transition metal carbides in the activation of CO2 via the reverse water gas shift reaction and oxidative dehydrogenation. A large focus of his work is the application of in situ and operando techniques, both synchrotron as well as in house developed laboratory based.



Structured catalysts for process intensification in reforming of CH4 and C3H8 for H2 production: catalytic performance and preliminary scale-up (Session B1)

Dr. Antonio Vita

Researcher at CNR-ITAE, He is the Head of the Fuel Processing Materials and Technologies (FPMaT) research team. His scientific activity is mostly in the field of heterogeneous catalysis applied to the materials and technologies for the energy sector. His current research interests concern the design and characterisation of structured catalysts (monoliths, foams) for the intensification of reforming and CO2/syngas to Synthetic Natural Gas processes. Parallel to the development of materials, the research activity of Dr Vita also regards the design and realisation of compact reactors and small-scale Fuel Processor Systems for H2 production from fossil and renewable fuel. He is member of several working groups: SP2- Chemical Energy Storage of EERA (European Energy Research Alliance); TC3-Energy to Hydrogen of Hydrogen Europe; recently he was also a member of the Technical Steering Committee of HySA Catalysis/Hydrogen South Africa. He has authored or co-authored more than 60 peer-reviewed publications on international journals, 4 chapters of international books and attended more than 100 international congresses.

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