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Chemical and Biological Process Development

Karl Albrecht

Karl Albrecht

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
PO Box 999
Richland, WA 99352


Karl Albrecht joined PNNL in 2009 after graduating from Iowa State University where he completed his graduate work under Brent Shanks and Thomas Wheelock. Since joining PNNL, he has been involved in a number of diverse projects focused on the catalytic production of fuels and chemicals from biorenewables. He has experience in catalyst screening and characterization, reactor design and implementation as well as the development and analysis of kinetic and thermodynamic models.

PNNL Patents

Research Interests

  • Fuels and chemicals from biorenewables via thermochemical processes
  • High throughput catalyst discovery and development
  • Catalyst characterization
  • Reactor design and reaction kinetics analysis

Education and Credentials

  • Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, Iowa State University
  • B.S. Chemical Engineering, University of Nebraska – Lincoln

PNNL Publications


  • Davidson SD, KA Spies, D Mei, L Kovarik, IV Kutnyakov, XS Li, V Dagle, KO Albrecht, and RA Dagle. 2017. "Steam Reforming of Acetic Acid over Co-supported Catalysts: Coupling Ketonization for Greater Stability." ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering 5(10):9136-9149.  doi:10.1021/acssuschemeng.7b02052
  • Lopez-Ruiz JA, AR Cooper, G Li, and KO Albrecht. 2017. "Enhanced Hydrothermal Stability and Catalytic Activity of LaxZryOz Mixed Oxides for the Ketonization of Acetic Acid in the Aqueous Condensed Phase." ACS Catalysis 7(10):6400-6412.  doi:10.1021/acscatal.7b01071
  • Maddi B, EA Panisko, TW Wietsma, TL Lemmon, MS Swita, KO Albrecht, and DT Howe. 2017. "Quantitative Characterization of Aqueous Byproducts from Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Municipal Wastes, Food Industry Wastes, and Biomass Grown on Waste." ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering 5(3):2205-2214.  doi:10.1021/acssuschemeng.6b02367


  • Albrecht KO, Y Zhu, AJ Schmidt, JM Billing, TR Hart, SB Jones, GD Maupin, RT Hallen, T Ahrens, and DB Anderson. 2016. "Impact of Heterotrophically Stressed Algae for Biofuel Production via Hydrothermal Liquefaction and Catalytic Hydrotreating in Continuous-Flow Reactors." Algal Research 14:17-27.  doi:10.1016/j.algal.2015.12.008
  • Jarvis JM, N Sudasinghe, KO Albrecht, AJ Schmidt, RT Hallen, DB Anderson, JM Billing, and T Schaub. 2016. "Impact of Iron Porphyrin Complexes when Hydroprocessing Algal HTL Biocrude." Fuel 182:411-418.  doi:10.1016/j.fuel.2016.05.107
  • Lebarbier VM, CD Smith, MD Flake, KO Albrecht, MJ Gray, KK Ramasamy, and RA Dagle. 2016. "Integrated Process for the Catalytic Conversion of Biomass-Derived Syngas into Transportation Fuels." Green Chemistry 18(7):1880-1891.  doi:10.1039/c5gc02298c
  • Maddi B, EA Panisko, KO Albrecht, and DT Howe. 2016. "Qualitative Characterization of the Aqueous Fraction from Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Algae Using 2D Gas Chromatography with Time-of-flight Mass Spectrometry." Journal of Visualized Experiments 109:e53634.  doi:10.3791/53634
  • Maddi B, EA Panisko, TW Wietsma, TL Lemmon, MS Swita, KO Albrecht, and DT Howe. 2016. "Quantitative Characterization of the Aqueous Fraction from Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Algae." Biomass & Bioenergy 93:122-130.  doi:10.1016/j.biombioe.2016.07.010
  • Xing R, VM Lebarbier, MD Flake, L Kovarik, KO Albrecht, CA Deshmane, and RA Dagle. 2016. "Steam Reforming of Fast Pyrolysis-Derived Aqueous Phase Oxygenates over Co, Ni, and Rh Metals Supported on MgAl2O4." Catalysis Today 269:166-174.  doi:10.1016/j.cattod.2015.11.046


  • Mei D, VM Lebarbier, R Xing, KO Albrecht, and RA Dagle. 2015. "Steam Reforming of Ethylene Glycol over MgAl2O4 Supported Rh, Ni, and Co Catalysts." ACS Catalysis 6(1):315-325.  doi:10.1021/acscatal.5b01666
  • Panisko EA, TW Wietsma, TL Lemmon, KO Albrecht, and DT Howe. 2015. "Characterization of the Aqueous Fractions from Hydrotreatment and Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Lignocellulosic Feedstocks." Biomass & Bioenergy 74:162-171.  doi:10.1016/j.biombioe.2015.01.011


  • Andersen A, SM Kathmann, MA Lilga, KO Albrecht, RT Hallen, and D Mei. 2014. "Effects of Potassium Doping on CO Hydrogenation Over MoS2 Catalysts: A First-Principles Investigation." Catalysis Communications 52:92-97.  doi:10.1016/j.catcom.2014.02.011
  • Jones SB, Y Zhu, DB Anderson, RT Hallen, DC Elliott, AJ Schmidt, KO Albrecht, TR Hart, MG Butcher, C Drennan, LJ Snowden-Swan, R Davis, and C Kinchin. 2014. Process Design and Economics for the Conversion of Algal Biomass to Hydrocarbons: Whole Algae Hydrothermal Liquefaction and UpgradingPNNL-23227, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Jones SB, Y Zhu, LJ Snowden-Swan, D Anderson, RT Hallen, AJ Schmidt, KO Albrecht, and DC Elliott. 2014. Whole Algae Hydrothermal Liquefaction: 2014 State of TechnologyPNNL-23867, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Lebarbier VMC, RA Dagle, L Kovarik, KO Albrecht, XS Li, L Li, CE Taylor, X Bao, and Y Wang. 2014. "Sorption-Enhanced Synthetic Natural Gas (SNG) Production from Syngas: A Novel Process Combining CO Methanation, Water-Gas Shift, and CO2 Capture." Applied Catalysis. B, Environmental 144:223-232.  doi:10.1016/j.apcatb.2013.06.034
  • Mei D, VA Glezakou, VMC Lebarbier, L Kovarik, H Wan, KO Albrecht, MA Gerber, RJ Rousseau, and RA Dagle. 2014. "Highly Active and Stable MgAl2O4 Supported Rh and Ir Catalysts for Methane Steam Reforming: A Combined Experimental and Theoretical Study." Journal of Catalysis 316:11-23.  doi:10.1016/j.jcat.2014.04.021
  • Sudasinghe N, B Dungan, P Lammers, KO Albrecht, DC Elliott, RT Hallen, and T Schaub. 2014. "High resolution FT-ICR mass spectral analysis of bio-oil and residual water soluble organics produced by hydrothermal liquefaction of the marine microalga Nannochloropsis salina." Fuel 119:47-56.  doi:10.1016/j.fuel.2013.11.019


  • Dagle RA, VM Lebarbier, KO Albrecht, J Li, CE Taylor, X Bao, and Y Wang. 2013. "Syngas Conversion to Hydrocarbon Fuels through Mixed Alcohol Intermediates." In 23rd North American Catalysis Society Meeting, June 2-7, 2013, Louisville, Kentucky, pp. Paper No. P-M-BRC-147.  North American Catalysis Society, N/A. 
  • Zhu Y, KO Albrecht, DC Elliott, RT Hallen, and SB Jones. 2013. "Development of Hydrothermal Liquefaction and Upgrading Technologies for Lipid-Extracted Algae Conversion to Liquid Fuels." Algal Research 2(4):455-464.  doi:10.1016/j.algal.2013.07.003
  • Albrecht KO, VA Glezakou, RJ Rousseau, MH Engelhard, T Varga, RJ Colby, JE Jaffe, XS Li, D Mei, CF Windisch, Jr, SM Kathmann, TL Lemmon, MJ Gray, TR Hart, BL Thompson, and MA Gerber. 2013. Rh-Based Mixed Alcohol Synthesis Catalysts: Characterization and Computational ReportPNNL-22697, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Elliott DC, TR Hart, AJ Schmidt, GG Neuenschwander, LJ Rotness, Jr, MV Olarte, AH Zacher, KO Albrecht, RT Hallen, and JE Holladay. 2013. "Process Development for Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Algae Feedstocks in a Continuous-Flow Reactor ." Algal Research 2(4):445-454. 
  • Mei D, VMC Lebarbier, RJ Rousseau, VA Glezakou, KO Albrecht, L Kovarik, MD Flake, and RA Dagle. 2013. "Comparative Investigation of Benzene Steam Reforming over Spinel Supported Rh and Ir Catalysts." ACS Catalysis 3(6):1133-1143.  doi:10.1021/cs4000427


  • Andersen A, SM Kathmann, MA Lilga, KO Albrecht, RT Hallen, and D Mei. 2012. "First-principles characterization of potassium intercalation in the hexagonal 2H-MoS2." Journal of Physical Chemistry C 116(2):1826-1832.  doi:10.1021/jp206555b
  • Gerber MA, MJ Gray, KO Albrecht, and BL Thompson. 2012. Optimization of Rhodium-Based Catalysts for Mixed Alcohol Synthesis - 2012 Progress ReportPNNL-22659, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Glezakou VA, JE Jaffe, RJ Rousseau, D Mei, SM Kathmann, KO Albrecht, MJ Gray, and MA Gerber. 2012. "The Role of Ir in Ternary Rh-Based Catalysts for Syngas Conversion to C2+ Oxygenates." Topics in Catalysis 55(7-10):595-600.  doi:10.1007/s11244-012-9836-9



Chemical and Biological Process Development

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