Student Spotlight: Luiz Reis
Luiz Reis, 23, is a senior undergraduate student doing research at the Center for Renewable & Alternative Fuel Technologies (CRAFT) at Eastern Kentucky University. He attends the University of Engineering and Architecture’s Foundation in Brazil and became involved with CRAFT through an internship program offered through his university. Luiz works with Gary Selby, CRAFT researcher technician, primarily on the feedstock side of Selby’s research, which is the conversion of biomass to energy. Luiz has also helped Dr. Bruce Pratt, CRAFT’s director, and Selby collect samples from their switchgrass establishment study plots and conducted dry matter analysis on switchgrass and sorghum. When it is time to bale the switchgrass, he will help with the sampling and analysis to evaluate the effect of different storage methods on subsequent sugar yields.
According to Selby, “Luiz is really involved in a lot of the research that we do in my lab. A lot of my time is devoted to scale up research, and Luiz provides support in areas such as biomass handling and analysis where I usually don’t get a chance to spend much time. In other words, while I am doing one thing, Luiz can do another with just a little training and oversight, which makes CRAFT more efficient at producing results.”
“Everything that Luiz has been doing benefits CRAFT by gaining knowledge about how switchgrass and other crops grown in Kentucky can provide sugars for the production of algal biodiesel,” stated Selby. What Luiz has been doing provides yield data on switchgrass. He will also be involved in assessing the effects that storage methods have on sugar production.
The tasks that Luiz does for CRAFT are very valuable. “The worries with environmental issues are of much focus nowadays, like searching for new sources of energy to replace the use of petroleum,” said Luiz, who will be returning home to Brazil once this Spring 2012 semester comes to an end. “I think it’s a great opportunity for my career, as well as learning more about these subjects.”
Published on February 22, 2012