Guest Speakers

Academic Information

Professor Arun Mujumdar

Professor Arun S. Mujumdar received B,Chem.Eng. from ICT (then UDCT), Mumbai, India, followed by M.Eng. and PhD from McGill University, Montreal, Canada. He was conferred Doctor Honoris Causa by Lodz Technical University, Poland (2008) and University of Lyon1, France( 2011). After several years of industrial R&D in USA and Canada he joined the chemical engineering faculty of McGill University in 1975 until 2000 when he moved to the National University of Singapore where he was Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Director of Minerals, Materials & Metals Technology Centre. He was President and Principal Consultant of Exergex Cop. in Canada which provided R&D consulting to numerous companies between 1989 and 2000. He has mentored over 65 PhD candidates and 35 postdoctoral researchers. He has published over 550 peer-reviewed papers, delivered more than 100 plenary and keynote lectures at international conferences ,authored three books and some 150 book chapters and edited more than 60 books and 10 e-books in heat and mass transfer as well as drying. He is the Founding Chair of the acclaimed International Drying Symposium(IDS) series and several conference series in drying, Editor-in-Chief of the archival journal Drying Technology(Taylor & Francis), Editor of Handbook of Industrial Drying ( 4th ed. CRC Press) as well co-editor of the 5-volume set Modern Drying Technology (VCH-Wiley). Currently he is affiliated with McGill University, Montreal and Western University, London, Canada and a number of universities in China, India, Thailand, Iran, Australia, Brazil etc. He actively advises a number of PhD students in several countries, He is recipient of numerous international awards including two highest National level awards in 2014 from the Government of China for his contribution to the development of science and technology in China as well as the highest awards from the Provincial governments of Tianjin and Jejiang, China. He currently resides in Toronto, Canada. He is advisor to several universities and consults for industry internationally. Extracted from McGill University; more information at

Professor Da-Wen Sun

Born in Southern China, Professor Da-Wen Sun is a global authority in food engineering research and education. He is a Member of Royal Irish Academy, the highest academic honour in Ireland; a Member of Academia Europaea (The Academy of Europe), one of the most prestigious academies in the world; a Fellow of International Academy of Food Science and Technology; and a Fellow of International Academy of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. He is also the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Food and Bioprocess Technology, one of the most prestigious food science and technology journals; Series Editor of “Contemporary Food Engineering” book series with already about 50 volumes published; and the founder and President of the International Academy of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (iAABE). In addition, he served as the President the International Commission of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (CIGR), the world largest organisation in the field, in 2013-2014, and is now Honorary President of CIGR. He has significantly contributed to the field of food engineering as a researcher, as an academic authority and as an educator. His main research activities include cooling, drying and refrigeration processes and systems, quality and safety of food products, bioprocess simulation and optimisation, and computer vision / image processing and hyperspectral imaging technologies. Especially, his many scholarly works have become standard reference materials for researchers in the areas of hyperspectral imaging, computer vision, ultrasonic freezing, vacuum cooling, computational fluid dynamics modelling, etc. Results of his work have been published in over 900 papers including more than 500 peer-reviewed journal papers indexed by Web of Science, with an average citation of 31.04 per paper. His Web of Science h-index is 82 and SCOPUS h-index is 87 (September 2017). He also has 33 papers selected by Thomson Reuters’s Essential Science IndicatorsSM as highly-cited papers, ranking him No. 2 in the world in Agricultural Sciences (September 2017). He has also edited 15 authoritative books. According to ESI, based on data derived over a period of ten years from Web of Science, there are about 4,500 scientists who are among the top one percent of the most cited scientists in the category of Agriculture Sciences, and in the last few years, Professor Sun has consistently been ranked among the very top 10 scientists in the world (he was at the 9th position in January 2017), and has been named Highly Cited Researcher in 2015, 2016 and 2017 by Clarivate Analytics (Thomson Reuters). He received a first class BSc Honours and MSc in Mechanical Engineering, and a PhD in Chemical Engineering in China before working in various universities in Europe. He became the first Chinese national to be permanently employed in an Irish University when he was appointed College Lecturer at University College Dublin, National University of Ireland in 1995, and was then continuously promoted in the shortest possible time to Associate Professor, Professor, and Full Professor. Dr Sun is now a Full Professor of Food and Biosystems Engineering and Director of the Food Refrigeration and Computerised Food Technology Research Group at University College Dublin (UCD). In recognition of his significant contribution to Food Engineering worldwide and for his outstanding leadership in the field, the International Commission of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (CIGR) awarded him the “CIGR Merit Award” in 2000, in 2006, and again in 2016, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) based in the UK named him “Food Engineer of the Year 2004”, in 2008 he was awarded “CIGR Recognition Award” in honour of his distinguished achievements as the top one percent of Agricultural Engineering scientists in the world. In 2007 he was presented with the only “AFST(I) Fellow Award” in that year by the Association of Food Scientists and Technologists (India). In 2010 he received the “CIGR Fellow Award”, the title of Fellow is the highest honour in CIGR, and is conferred to individuals who have made sustained, outstanding contributions worldwide. In March 2013, he was presented with the “You Bring Charm to the World Award” by Hong Kong based Phoenix Satellite Television with other award recipients including the 2012 Nobel Laureate in Literature and the Chinese Astronaut Team for Shenzhou IX Spaceship, in July 2013 he received “The Frozen Food Foundation Freezing Research Award” from International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) for his significant contributions to enhancing the field of food freezing technologies, this is the first time that this prestigious award was presented to a scientist outside the USA, and in June 2015 he was presented with the “IAEF Lifetime Achievement Award”. This IAEF (International Association of Engineering and Food) award highlights the lifetime contribution of a prominent engineer in the field of food. Extracted from University College Doublin; more information at

Professor Oliver Hensel

Professor Hensel is BSc Agriculture (Gottingen University), MSc Agricultural Engineering (Hohenheim University) and Agricultural Engineering in the Tropics and Subtropics (Hohenheim University). Since 2004, he is a full Professor (C4) for Agricultural Engineering at the Faculty of Organic Agricultural Sciences at the University of Kassel; founder Member of the International Centre for Decent Work and Development "Higher Education Excellence in Development Co-operation" by DAAD and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). His international experience includes up to 50 own scientific projects with focus on Africa and Asia and numerous business relations all around the world while working in industry. Areas of expertise: Postharvest technology, Renewable energy, Tillage, Irrigation, Rural development, Sensors for farm implements. Extracted from RE4Food; more information at University of Kassel

Professor Raghu Echempati

Raghu Echempati is a full professor at Kettering University (Michigan, USA). He received a B.S. in mechanical mechanical engineering at the Andhra University of India, a M.Tech in mechanical engineering at the Indian Institute of technology (Kharagpur) and a Ph.D in Mechanical engineering at the same institute. He also received a M.Sc. in Engineering Management at the Kettering University. Professor Echempati has been the director of mechanical engineering graduated programs, and academic advisor for ME study abroad programs in Germany and Australia, faculty advisor/chair of the student senior section of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and Pi Tau Sigma Honor Society. He has also served as a member of several committees at Kettering University including the faculty senate, undergraduate and graduate programs, international programs, higher learning commission(HLC) and ABET. His specialties are Computer aided design, Fatigue, Finite element methods, Machine design, Manufacturing product design, synthesis and conceptual design, Mechanical design, Mechanism design, Metal-forming simulation, Sheet metal forming, Vibrations. When not teaching or engaged in research, Professor Echempati enjoys travel, international and cultural experiences. Among others, he has been awarded by ASME (Dedicated Service Award, Faculty Advisor Award), SAE ( McFarland Award) and Kettering University ( Oustanding Applied Researcher Award, Oswald Award for service to International Programs). More information at Kettering University Web page

Professor Rogério Gomes de Oliveira

Rogerio Gomes de Oliveira graduated in Food Engineer at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Brazil, where he also received his M.Sc. and Doctor Degree in Food Engineering. He did his post-doctor research in adsorption cooling systems at the Institute of Refrigeration and Cryogenics of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), China, and joined the Mechanical Engineering School of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, first as Lecturer, and then, as Associate Professor. His activities in SJTU included research about adsorption cooling and heating systems, and lectures of Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics and Heat transfer. He is currently a tenured Professor at the Energy and Sustainability Department of Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC), Brazil, where he teaches Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics, and Thermal Energy Conversion and Utilization. His research interests are sorption cooling and heating systems, applied thermodynamics, and applied heat transfer, especially those involving HVRAC systems and brewing processes. He wrote books chapters about solar sorption cooling systems and about sorption heat pumps for water heating and steam production. His research about sorption systems has been published in important thermal science journals like Applied Thermal Engineering, Applied Energy, Energy, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy and others, and had been cited in many other papers. More information at Laboratório de Ciência Térmicas Aplicada, Univerisidade Federal de Santa Catarina; and at

Doctor Vladimir Martínez

Mechanical Engineering degree and Master Engineering in Materials Science. PhD in Engineering applied to processing of metal matrix composites for automotive and aeronautical applications, with different scientific internships in materials science, composite materials and nanotechnology. Dr. Martínez has been chair at the Mechanical Engineering and Textile Engineering departments of the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana-UPB, Medellín, also Scientific Director in charge of EPM's Nanotechnology Center in Energy, one of the main initiatives in emerging technologies in Colombia. He has participated in the creation of reference documents for science and technology programs at COLCIENCIAS' National Program of Industry, as well as a member of the Evaluation Committee for SACES, belonging to the Colombian Ministry of Education. Other achievements include contributions in regional public policy documents for science and the rank of COLCIENCIAS Senior Researcher. Currently he is Tenured Professor & Researcher at the School of Mechanical Engineering in UPB-Medellín.

Doctor Carlos Julio Cortés

Carlos Julio Cortés Rodríguez is Full Professor of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechatronics at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia-UNAL, Bogotá. He received a B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, a MSc in Materials and Processes and a MSc in Economical Sciences (Industry and Technology). Prof. Cortés Rodriguez holds a Doctor of Engineering degree (Dr.-Ing) from the University of Kassel, Germany. He is currently director of the Doctoral School of Engineering at UNAL, Bogotá. His main research areas are Biomechanical Engineering, Precision Engineering and Advanced Dimensional Metrology, Manufacturing Engineering applied to Medical technology mainly Machining Processes and 3D Bio-printing. He is member of the VDI (Association of German Engineers), SME (Society of Manufacturing Engineers) and the ISB (International Society of Biomechanics).

Doctor John Jairo Padilla

Dr. Padilla received his Electronic Engineering Degree at the Universidad del Cauca in 1993. He holds a PhD in Telematic Engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Cataluñ (2008) and a Master on Computer Science from the Universidad Industrial de Santander (1998). He is member of Riegonets Research Community (Iberoamerican Network for Information and Telecommunications technologies applied to Agriculture) and BigDSSAgro (Iberoamerican Newtork for Agro-Big-Data). He works on Telecommunications for Agriculture area within the Agroin technology center of the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana Seccional Bucaramanga. Likewise, he cooperates with the Business Intelligence and Big Data Laboratory at the same University. His recent works are focused on Wireless Sensor Networks, Industrial Data Networks and Big Data applied to Smart Farming.

Doctor Henry Alexander Váquiro

Dr. Vaquiro holds a Ph.D in Food Technology from the Universitat Politécnica de Valéncia (2009), and a Bachelors degree in Agroindustrial Engineering from the Universidad del Tolima (2003). His research interests are Drying of agricultural products and byproducts, Modeling of transport phenomena in food processing, Assessment and optimization of processes by computational simulation, Experimental validation, non-linear regression analysis, and global sensitivity analysis of mathematical models, Development of computational algorithms for system assessment, modeling, simulation, and optimization (MS Excel, MS Visual Basic, LabView, Matlab, Comsol Multiphysics), Fuzzy logic and artificial neural networks applied to simulation of complex system. He is currently Associate professor of the Agronomic Engineering Faculty at the Universidad del Tolima (Colombia). He has numerous peer-reviewed publications in international journals and he has been invited as a speaker in several international conferences.

Doctor Sonia Lucía Rincón Prat

Dr. Rincón is a Mechanical Engineer from the Universidad Nacional de Colombia-UNAL, Bogotá, and PhD with emphasis on the use of biomass as a regenerative energy source from Kassel University in Germany. She is currently an Associated Professor of the Mechanical Engineering Department of the UNAL at Bogotá, and she is the head of the Research Group on Biomass and Optimization of Thermal Processes of the same University. Prof. Rincón research field focuses on the use of biomass as a renewable energy source through thermochemical processes with emphasis on the use of Colombian agroindustrial residues. She has participated in consultancy projects aiming to expand biofuels production and use for the Colombian government. She has given lectures on Master and Bachelor level in the fields of Thermodynamics, Heat Transfer, Modeling of Thermal Systems, Combustion and Energetic use of biomass and biofuels.

Doctor Paalo Andréa Moreno

Dr. Moreno is currently a professor of Civil Engineering at the Universidad de Santander–UDES. She holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Universidad Industrial de Santander. Her research interests are biomaterials production and development of sustainable construction materials using agro waste, recycled materials, biotechnology and nanotechnology. Some of her current projects are the PHB production by native microorganism using agro-waste, the search of supplementary cementitious material for concrete and the development of cellulose panels made from recycled materials. She has formulated and executed research projects with national and international entities, like the InterAmerican Development Bank IDB.

Doctor Diana Sinuco

Dr. Sinuco is currently an Associate professor of the Department of Chemistry at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Bogotá). Chemist, M. Sc. and Dr. Sc. in Chemistry from the Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Dr. Sinuco is expert in organic volatile compounds extraction involving solvent assisted flavour extraction (SAFE), headspace (HS), solid phase micro-extraction (SPME) and liquid-liquid micro-extraction (LLME), the analysis by gas chromatography/olfactometry and mass spectrometry (GC-O-MS) and multivariate analysis. Her research interest is the analysis of volatile compounds with biological activity: aroma, fungicidal activity, bactericide and insecticide or others due to processes of communication between species. She is reviewer for the Revista Colombiana de Química, the European Food Research Technology and the Microchemical Journal. She has been evaluator of research calls, teaching competitions, qualification exams for doctoral candidates and evaluation of doctoral and master projects in several national universities. As a member of the American Chemical Society (ACS) she was a delegate at the Pittcon Exposition and Conference 2012. As an active member of the Sociedad Colombiana de Ciencias Químicas, she was part of the organizing committee of the 2016 Iberoamerican Congress on Natural Products (CIPNAT) and is part of the organizing committee of the XXVI Congress SILAE 2017 and the 2nd CiCTS 2017.

Doctor Gail Albeiro Gutierrez Ramirez

Doctor Gutierrez is a Mechanical Engineer from the Industrial University of Santander-UIS, Bucaramanga, and PhD in Engineering from the Pontifical Bolivarian University-UPB, Medellin. He is currently a full time professor of the Mechanical Engineering Program at the La Guajira University in Colombia. His research works dealed with mechanical vibration analysis on rotary equipment and meshless methods for Computer Fluid Dynamics. He currently teaches heat transfer, numerical methods, fluid mechanics, Dynamics, and his major research areas are numerical methods, measurement of industrial variables and software engineering.

Doctor Alberto David Pertuz Comas

Doctor Pertuz is a Mechanical engineer and Master of Science from the Universidad Central de Venezuela, and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the Université des Science et Technologie de Lille, France. Hi is currently a full time professor of Mechanical Engineering Department of the Universidad Industrial de Santander-UIS, Bucaramanga and his areas of research are fatigue of materials and mechanical characterization. He is also the executive editor of the UIS Engineering Journal.