University of Vermont

Gund Institute for Ecological Economics

Sam Gorton

Sam Gorton PhD Student, RSENR

MS/PhD, Biological/Agricultural Engineering, WSU

BS, Chemical Engineering, Clarkson University


Advisors: John Todd and Mary Watzin

Sam was born and has lived and worked most of his life on his family's small dairy farm in Fairfield, VT. He graduated from Clarkson University (Potsdam, NY) in 2007 with a BS in chemical engineering. As a member of the Honors Program at Clarkson, Sam was first introduced to the interdisciplinary approach to problem solving that has led him to UVM's Gund Institute. While at Clarkson, he completed a seven-month co-operative learning experience as a process engineer with Genencor International. It was this experience, coupled with his agricultural heritage, that seeded Sam's current interests in ecological design of biofuels processes. Also at Clarkson, he performed research in the Process Intensification and Clean Technology (PICT) group, led by Dr. Roshan Jachuck, an expert in the emerging design field of process intensification. Sam's undergraduate thesis topic at Clarkson was "Optimal Utilization of Mass and Energy Flows in Farming Communities Integrated with an Intensified Biodiesel Production System." Since graduating from Clarkson, Sam worked for a year as a laboratory technician with the PICT group, continuing his research on intensified biodiesel production. As an independent engineering contractor, he has contributed to the research and design of solid catalyst biodiesel production processes and thermal energy from compost systems. Sam also spent a year as a graduate student at Washington State University (Pullman, WA), where his research focused on studying microbial community dynamics in anaerobic digestion. Outside of his work at UVM, Sam is glad to be back in Vermont and proud to be in pursuit of a more agrarian lifestyle with his wife Olivia.

Research Interests: Sustainable Agriculture, Ecological Engineering Design
Dissertation: Ecological engineering design and analysis for agro-industrial networks

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Last modified July 29 2015 10:55 AM