Jack LEGRAND is Professor in Chemical Engineering at the University of Nantes since 1988. He is specialist in transport phenomena and mixing in processes and (photo) bioreactors. He has ca 215 publications in international journals and is co-author of 16 patents. He is Director of the Joined Research Unit (UMR), constituted by about 200 people, GEPEA (Process Engineering for Energy, Environment and Food) between CNRS, University of Nantes, ONIRIS and School of Mines of Nantes. Since 2009, he is co-coordinator of the thematic group “Biomass for Energy of the French Alliance for the Research Coordination for Energy (ANCRE). Member since 2010 of the European Science Foundation in the EUROCORES (EUROpean COllaborative RESearch) programme EuroSolarFuels; Molecular Science for a Conceptual Transition from Fossil to Solar Fuels. Since 2014, he is the CNRS representative in the Joint Programme Bioenergy of the European Energy Research Alliance for Bioenergy. Member of the board of the French Society of Chemical Engineering and of the European Federation of Chemical Engineering.
He works on study of the fundamental problems dealing with transfer phenomena in mass/heat exchangers (reactors, mixers) by using the methodology of Chemical Engineering. Studies are related to mixing and bioreactors, particularly the emulsion processing, microencapsulation processes, the centrifugal partition chromatography. The last aspect of his research deals with the photobiochemical engineering. The objective is to apply the chemical engineering concepts to the valorisation of photosynthetic microorganisms (cyanobacteria, microalgae) with the study of the different unit operations, from the culture systems (photobioreactors) to extraction of molecules of interest. This integrated approach is necessary for mass production of microalgae for bioenergy production (3rd generation of biofuels). One essential element is the conception and the modelling of intensified solar photobioreactors. In the laboratory, we have open this year a R&D facility, named AlgoSolis, to study the industrial production of microalgae in real conditions. The goal is to study the scale-up of the photobioreactors, including the solar problematic, and to optimise the operating contitions and the production management. The last concept developed in the lab is the algorefinery concept for the complete valorisation of microalgae. It means that you have to define the process scheme in order to optimise the valorisation of the different fractions of microalgae, lipids for biofuels, pigments, polysaccharides and proteins.