Keynote Speakers

Dr. Khaled Al-Fadhel

Minister of Oil, Kuwait

Minister of Electricity and Water, Kuwait

Biography: Dr. Khaled A. Al-Fadhel is the current Minister of Oil and Minister of Electricity and Water for the State of Kuwait as well as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) and the Chairman of Supreme Council of Energy. Prior to his appointment as the Oil Minister he was the Undersecretary of Ministry of Commerce and Industry from 2018 to 2019. He received his PhD (2005) and MSc (2001) degrees in Chemical Engineering from Lehigh University in the United States. He graduated from Kuwait University with a BSc degree in Chemical Engineering in 1996. He joined Kuwait University as an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering where he also held various academic positions including Vice Dean of Engineering, Assistant Vice President and Director of the Center for Evaluation & Measurement. He was also recipient of best teaching awards from Kuwait University and Lehigh University. He is a member of different national and international scientific organizations.

Prof. David Chiaramonti

University of Turin, Italy

Biography: David Chiaramonti, PhD, is a full professor at Polytechnic of Turin, Torino, Piedmont, Italy where teaches Bioenergy Conversion Technologies. Previously he was a member of CREAR and chairman of the Renewable Energy COnsortium for R&D (RE-CORD), University of Florence. His main scientific interest is on the production and use in engines/turbines of biofuels, either liquid, gaseous or solid, and on bioproducts, mainly focusing on thermochemical biomass conversion and process development. Recent activities cover aviation biofuel, catalytic pyrolysis and gasification of biomass in pilot/demo reactors, hydrothermal liquefaction and carbonization, methanation, and algae cultivation systems and downstream processing. He is author of more than 180 publications on International Journals and Conferences, and participated to more than 25 EU R&D and dissemination projects, in particular in the field of Biomass. He is member of the International Organising Committee, Scientific Committee and Topic Organiser of major conferences in the field, such as the European Biomass Conference and Exhibition (EUBCE), the International Symposium on Alcohol Fuels (ISAF), and the International Conference on Applied Energy (ICAE). David Chiaramonti has been member and Country Representative of IEA-Bioenergy, Task 34 - Biomass Pyrolysis and IEA Task 39 (Liquid Biofuel), and today Country Representative at UN-ICAO CAEP AFTF (ICAO task force on Alternative Fuels for aviation). He was a member of the Italian and the European Biofuel Technology Platforms, and technical secretary of the Leaders for Sustainable Biofuels: he is now technically coordinating the Alternative and Renewable Transport Fuel Forum (ART Fuel Forum, AFF), a DG Energy tender on market and policy for Advanced Biofuels, and the new H2020 project on Aviation Biofuels BIO4A (starting May2018). David Chiaramonti is member and has been chairing the International Research Advisory Council (RAC) of DBFZ (German Biomass Research Center).
David Chiaramonti has been awarded the Linneborn Prize for outstanding merits in biomass at EUBCE 2017 in Stockhlom.

Prof. M. R. Riazi

Kuwait University, Kuwait

Biography: M. R. Riazi received a doctorate degree in Chemical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) and is the author of 150 publications including 6 books in the areas of oil, gas, coal and biofuel characterization, production and processing. In addition he has over 100 conference presentations and about 100 invited lectures and workshops for the petroleum industry in more than 40 countries. He has served as an Assistant Professor at Penn State as well as Visiting Professor / Scholar in the Departments of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the following universities: Illinois/Chicago, Texas/Austin, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Trondheim), McGill (Montreal), Waterloo, and some other universities in US, India and Middle East. He is a professor and former chairman of Chemical Engineering at Kuwait University and is the Editor-in-Chief of IJOGCT. As a result of his work, Dr. Riazi has been honored as the recipient the following awards: Diploma of Honor from United States National Petroleum Engineering Society for the Outstanding Contributions to the Petroleum Industry, KU Outstanding Research and Teaching Awards (received from former Amir of Kuwait) and was an elected Fellow of American Institute of Chemical Engineers. He is a registered and licensed professional engineer in Ontario, Canada.

Dr. Michael A. Serio

President of Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. (AFR), USA

Biography: Dr. Michael A. Serio is the President of Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. (AFR), a contract R&D firm located in East Hartford, CT (USA). Dr. Serio received his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University, and his Ph.D. degree, also in Chemical Engineering, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During the past 36 years, Dr. Serio has been a Principal Investigator or Program Manager on DOE, NASA, NSF, and USDA sponsored programs to study the pyrolysis, gasification, liquefaction, and combustion of biomass, waste materials, and/or coal. He has also been involved in R&D projects to study jet fuel analysis and thermal stability, synthesis of fullerenes, fuel processing for fuel cells, pollution formation in combustion systems, FT-IR monitoring of combustion systems, advanced fire detection methods, polymer thermal degradation, trace contaminant control, radioactivity detection, and educational software development. Dr. Serio has served as Chair, Program Chair and Program Secretary for the American Chemical Society (ACS) Division of Energy and Fuels, and is currently the Head Trustee. In both 2008 and 2017, he received the Distinguished Service Award from this organization and he was named a Fellow of the ACS in 2015. He has also served as a member of the Advisory Committee for the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Connecticut and the editorial board of the journal, Fuel. Dr. Serio has authored or co-authored more than 175 publications, including two encyclopedia chapters and ten patents. He was the Senior Editor of a book titled “Synthesis and Characterization of Advanced Materials,” that was published by the ACS in 1998 and which is now available from Oxford University Press. He was also a co-author on three peer reviewed papers that were listed among the top ten cited papers in a twenty year period (1987-2007) for the journal, Energy & Fuels.

Prof. Curtis H. Whitson

Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

Biography: Curtis Hays Whitson is professor of petroleum engineering at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Dept. of Petroleum Engineering & Applied Geophysics; he founded the international consulting company PERA in 1988, as well as Petrostreamz in 2006, a petroleum software company dealing with optimized IAM (Integrated Asset Modeling).
Whitson researches and teaches both university and industry courses on petroleum phase behavior (PVT), gas-based EOR, gas condensate reservoirs, integrated-model optimization, petroleum-streams management, liquid-loading gas well performance, and liquids-rich shale well optimization. He has co-authored two books: Well Performance (Golan and Whitson) and the SPE monograph Phase Behavior (Whitson and Brulé), co-authored more than 100 papers, and has written three chapters of edited books.
Whitson has a B.Sc. degree in petroleum engineering from Stanford University and a PhD degree from the Norwegian Institute of Technology (now NTNU). He is a 25-year member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, and has twice received the Cedric K. Fergusson award (as co-author with Øivind Fevang, 1997 and Lars Høier, 2001).

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