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J.J. Leahy

Prof. J J Leahy is currently a senior lecturer in the Dept of Chemical Sciences at the University of Limerick where he is involved in teaching, curriculum development and research in the area of waste management and renewable energy.He currently heads a research group consisting of chemists and chemical engineers that is focused on chemical technologies for biofuels and biorefining from wastes with particular interests in:

  • Identifying the optimum thermochemical route (gasification, pyrolysis), & chemical hydrolysis route for the production of chemicals and second generation transport fuel from bio-waste.
  • Using laboratory & pilot scale processing facilities to test & optimise the yield of selected product from characterised feedstocks. The goal will be to develop novelty through optimising the process variables for particular feedstocks or products.
  • Develop and test catalysts/chemical processes for the production of and upgrading bio-oil.
  • Develop state of the art pre-treatment processes, that will enable rapid and environmentally benign procedures for hydrolysis of the carbohydrate components in lignocellulosic materials.
  • Demonstrate the feasibility of producing bio syngas and develop and test catalysts/chemical processes for production of alcohol or diesel fuels

He has a strong research background in applied biofuels research and has forged strong links with major and small stakeholders with the biofuels industry nationally. This collaboration with industry has led to two start-up biofuels companies in themed-west region. This research record is reflected in both a publication record in international journals and a demonstrated ability to attract funding from industry as well as national and international funding agencies. He plays a key role in several major EC funded and National projects bioenergy, biofuels and biorefineries.

A major strength of the candidate is his ability to foster and develop collaborations with Universities and Research Institutes engaged in research in renewable energy both at national and EU level. This will be important both in providing a strong platform for the University of Limerick to increase it’s profile nationally in the energy space and to create a profile with significant international impact.

Additional Links

Advances in poultry litter disposal technology–a review

BP Kelleher, JJ Leahy, AM Henihan, TF O’dwyer, D Sutton, MJ Leahy
Bioresource technology 83 (1), 27-36
• View Journal Article

Kinetic and adsorptive characterization of biochar in metal ions removal

D Kołodyńska, R Wnętrzak, JJ Leahy, MHB Hayes, W Kwapiński, …
Chemical Engineering Journal 197, 295-305
• View Journal Article