Research Interests


Dr. Brian He is a bioprocessing engineer and his expertise is in the areas of bioprocessing, biofuels and value-added products from bio-based resources. Brian’s recent research activities include biodiesel production technologies, chemical/ thermochemical processes for value-added products, and biomass conversion for chemicals and biofuels.

Current Projects


  • In situ Transesterification of Microalgal Oil

  • Glycerol thermal processing for value-added uses

  • Biobased Energy Education Material exchange System (BEEMS) (Collaboration with Ohio State University)





  • Grants Awarded in Past 5 Years
    (2008 - 2013)


  • Advancing glycerol conversion technology for commercialization for sustainable biodiesel industry. $50,000. Idaho State Board of Education. 07/2012 – 06/2013. Brian He (PI).
  • In situ transesterification of microalgal oil to produce algal biodiesel (Phase 2). $69,922 (KLK902). US Department of Transportation, via University Transportation Center (UTC) program at the University of Idaho. 07/2012 – 06/2013. Brian He (PI).
  • Production of renewable diesel fuel from biologically-based feedstocks. $59,998.40 (KLK). US Department of Transportation, via the Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium (PacTrans) at the University of Washington. 07/2012 – 06/2013. Jon Van Gerpen, Brian He (co-PI).
  • Multiple Enhanced-value Co-products from Regionally Important Oilseed Feedstocks. USDA NIFA. 07/11 - 06/14. $599,210. Matt Morra, Brian He (co-PI), Caleb Nindo.
  • In situ Transesterification of Microalgal Oil to Produce Algal Biodiesel. National Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology. 08/11 - 12/12. $57,000. Brian He (PI).
  • Production of Renewable Diesel Fuel from Biologically-based Feedstocks. National Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology. 08/10 - 07/12. $160,000. Jon Van Gerpen, Brian He (co-PI).
  • Biobased Energy Educational Material Exchange System (BEEMS). USDA HEC. 08/09 - 08/12. $59,800. Brian He (PI), collaborated with Ohio State University.
  • National Biodiesel Education Program (Phase 2). USDA Biodiesel Fuel Education Program. 10/08 - 09/13. $1,000,000. Jon Van Gerpen, Brian He (co-PI), Doug Haines, Dev Shrestha.
  • Measurement and Control Strategies for Sterol Glucosides to Improve Biodiesel Quality. National Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology. 08/08 - 08/09. $75,195. Jon Van Gerpen, Brian He (co-PI).
  • Thermal processing of low-grade glycerol to alcohols for biodiesel production. $141,171. National Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology. 08/07 – 12/09. Brian He (PI).