College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Iowa State University researchers lead two of five BioMADE bioreactor innovation projects

Iowa State University’s Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering researchers are leading two of five new projects announced by BioMADE to advance the United States bioeconomy and biomanufacturing goals. These projects were funded through a special BioMADE Project Call on advancing bioreactor design and development thanks to support from Schmidt Futures. They aim to use innovative technologies in bioreactor hardware, software, sensors, modeling, and automation to produce biobased products more efficiently at a commercial scale.

Bioreactor Innovations Led by Iowa State Professors

  1. Dennis Vigil, professor and associate department chair, and Zengyi Shao, associate professor and Vernon Guse Faculty Fellow, are leading a project to design a groundbreaking continuous bioreactor called the “Continuous Taylor Vortex Fermentor-Extractor-Separator.”
  2. Nigel Reuel, associate professor and Jack R. and Carol A. Johnson Faculty Fellow, in collaboration with Novozymes, is leading a project that optimizes and controls bioreactors with a generalizable machine-learning framework.

Fostering a Thriving Bioeconomy

These projects aim to strengthen domestic biomanufacturing capacity, create more robust and resilient supply chains, and build a diverse and globally competitive STEM workforce. By investing in bioreactor innovation, BioMADE and Iowa State University aim to foster a thriving bioeconomy that can generate new jobs, support a diverse workforce and attract investment to rural communities. To learn more about these bioreactor innovation projects, please visit the websites of BioMADE and Schmidt Futures.