Daria Camilla BOFFITO, PhD in Industrial Chemistry (Italy)

Daria holds a PhD in Industrial Chemistry. Her research targets process intensification of heterogeneous catalytic processes to transform biomass into chemicals and fuels. She also adopts ultrasound to synthesize catalysts and advanced materials.

Current position: Assistant Professor in Chemical Engineering at the Polytechnique Montréal, Canada

Research focus: Intensification of processes in liquid phase with heterogeneous catalysts, sonochemical synthesis of particles

Besides research, Daria has published a book on how to write scientific papers and prepare presentations and posters. She enjoys a wide network of industrial collaborations, which have resulted in several publications and international conference presentations.

In 2012 Daria was awarded a Green Talent. The jury emphasized the importance of biofuels as an alternative to fossil fuels and her focus on non-food biomass materials. She was awarded with fellowships by the Québec government in 2013, and the Banting Post-doctoral Fellowship by the Canadian government in 2014. Daria has published 23 research papers, 20 papers on scientific communication, 6 book chapters, and authored her own book. She is co-inventor of 2 patents to produce biofuels from triglycerides and diesel from stranded natural gas.

2014 NSERC Banting Post-doctoral Fellowship, Canada
2013 PBEEE Excellence Fellowship Program for Foreign Students by the government of Québec, Canada

CV as submitted for the Green Talents award (2012):

University of Milan, Italy

Research focus: Heterogeneous catalysis; production of biodiesel from non-food biomass materials

A PhD student in Industrial Chemistry, Daria Camilla Boffito can already look back on numerous awards, publications and international recognition for her important contributions to the field of heterogeneous catalysis and improved efficiency of the biodiesel manufacturing process.

Daria Camilla Boffito's mission is to increase the efficiency – and sustainability – of the biofuels production process. A leader among Italy's young scientists, Boffito's notable scientific achievements so far are driven by her broader perspective on the agricultural, energy harvesting and industrial manufacturing processes. This begins with her commitment to non-food biomass resources and desire to achieve maximum agricultural benefit from the crop selection, planting and harvesting phase.

“In my work I have always tried to use non-food cultures with low water requirements and green manure effects, and explored the possibility of adopting them for crop-rotation with food cultures,” explains Boffito. “In this way the land is not just used for energy harvesting purposes, but beneficial properties are also conferred to the ground.”

Boffito's already impressive record of publications and international presentations is based largely on her award-winning work developing efficient catalytic systems to improve process efficiency. These catalysts are designed to respond to different kinds of feedstocks and promote reactivity in environmentally friendly solvents, so as to avoid the use of toxic materials. She has also performed groundbreaking work with sonochemical techniques to enhance reactions efficiency.

The jury emphasized the importance of biofuels as an alternative to fossil fuels and Boffito's focus on non-food biomass materials, which is key to the sustainability of biofuels in the future.