James D. (Jim) McMillan works to advance lignocellulose and algal biorefining science and technology. His primary research and development focus is on lignocellulosic biomass conversion process technology development, integration, and scale up. He has more than 25 years of research experience on biochemical and sugar platform approaches to biomass conversion and integrating the key processing steps of pretreatment, enzymatic hydrolysis, and fermentation/microbial conversion to efficiently and cost-effectively produce biofuels and bio-based chemicals from cellulosic feedstocks.
McMillan currently leads the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL’s) Biomass Program’s Separations Development and Applications task. Previously, he also led NREL’s Integrated Biochemical Process Improvements Validation and Enzyme Validation tasks, supporting the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) by auditing and verifying performance and cost improvements being achieved in DOE cost-shared projects in these technical areas.
McMillan also coleads the IEA Bioenergy Task 39 focused on accelerating technology development and commercialization of liquid biofuels, and he cochairs the annual Symposium on Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals.