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BioFuelNet held a day-long workshop on science communication for it’s Highly Qualified Personnel or HQP, and the Advanced Biofuels Symposium from July 22-24 in Montreal. This is a review of the event by one of the participants.

The BioFuelNet HQP workshop was great. The improv was a great addition that not only got us familiar with the other HQP members but helped us with being more comfortable with communicating. I found that compared to other workshops, the improv gave the whole event a light-hearted feel that conveyed to being more open when discussing other projects or listening to other presenters.

The speakers were interesting and informative. The award-winning writer Gabrielle Bauer gave a good talk about how to write in a non-technical manner, so that the general public can undertand, which as an engineer can be difficult sometimes. A lot of her suggestions can be applied to technical writing as well. Being concise is useful – no matter what you are writing about. Sometimes, even if the information is interesting, scientific papers can be very dull and hard to follow,  just due to the overuse of technical terms dragging down the reader.


Gabrielle bauer

Gabrielle Bauer during her speech in HQP Improv Workshop


The rest of BioFuelNet’s Advanced Biofuels Symposium was interesting as well. I really was fascinated by how far the progress in the biofuel production has come with regards to industrial production. I am currently researching on a design of control systems for high efficiency engines to be fuel robust. This is done through use of a controller that learns what input is best suited for each fuel the engine uses while it’s running. This will then be applied to a range of biofuels to see how well it works with each of them. Because my research is in utilization and application of algorithms, I do not get to see how well the rest of the biofuels sector is doing on a daily basis. I am pleased to see biofuels becoming a strong industry and hope that, in the future, more projects like this will become viable.

This was the third year I attended the symposium and I can say without a doubt that it was the best symposium yet.



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