In his laboratory, they are interested in harnessing the power of sun through biological and artificial bio-mimetic routes for producing clean and renewable fuels. Currently, they are studying algal and cyanobacterial systems for carbon neutral biodiesel and bio-hydrogen production. In particular, they are interested in modeling and optimizing the growth and product formation kinetics in response to process parameters such as total and spectral irradiance, temperature, pH and various nutrient concentrations. In order to facilitate this task they are developing micro-fluidic based photobioreactors and non-invasive measurement techniques that will enable high throughput experiments to be conducted. Also, they are developing artificial photosynthetic systems that will use solar energy for efficient and cost effective conversion of CO2 directly into useable fuels and other value added products. This task involves using synthetic systems such as dye sensitized photo-electrochemical cells for efficient photo-electron generation and coupling of these electrons to enzyme and/or synthetic catalyst systems for hydrocarbon fuel production.
Transport of light; Mass and thermal energy in chemically reacting and biological systems; Thermodynamics of energy conversion systems;
Solar radiation transport and utilization; Algae for carbon dioxide sequestration and biofuel production; Bio-inspired solar cells; Novel hydrogen production and storage technologies; Artificial Photosynthesis