Personal profile

Research interests

For his PhD, Dr Chris Chuck investigated novel catalysts for the production of biodiesel from waste oils. After which Chris switched departments to Mechanical Engineering where he worked closely with the Ford Motor Company and BP on developing renewable biofuel technology, he also oversaw the design and construction of a microalgal bioreactor.

Chris spent the next 18 months running his own consultancy, in which he worked on projects related to renewable bioproducts with a range of companies, the Universities of Exeter, Bath and Bangor and DEFRA.

In September 2010, Chris rejoined the University of Bath as a Knowledge Transfer Fellow, developing catalysts for the production of bioplastics with Purac Biochem. He was awarded a Whorrod Research Fellowship in Sustainable Chemical Technologies in September 2011.


Chris’s group is multidisciplinary and investigates renewable alternative fuels and bioproducts. Within the group both photo-, mixo- and heterotrophic microbes are being investigated for their potential to produce lipids and higher value bioproducts. The aim is to develop this research into a sustainable biorefinery where fuels, chemicals and animal feed can be produced economically without impacting heavily on food and fresh water resources.

Further work is being undertaken into the upgrading of the biomass products by applying alternative chemical methods to fuel synthesis. The resulting liquid fuels address not only the sustainability issues but also the poor performance of current first generation biofuels. The aim of this work is to develop suitable road transportation fuels and biofuels suitable for the aviation industry. To further support this work collaborations are in place with academics in Mechanical Engineering working on fuel combustion and Life Cycle Analysis as well as EADS and the Ford Motor Company.

Further work within the group includes upgrading lignin through catalytic depolymerisation and testing this as a renewable additive.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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