SPS '18 - Innovations in Transforming Waste to Value-Added Products

December 5-7, 2018

SPS' 18 will focus on waste valorization and sustainability challenges, as well as opportunities for creating value-added products from the waste streams abundant in our cities, oceans, and food supply chains. The conference is chaired by Serpil Guran, Rutgers University.

Download SPS '18 Flyer

Conference Chair

  • Serpil Guran, Rutgers University

Steering Committee

  • Foster Agblevor, Utah State University
  • Callie Babbitt, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Shishir Chundawat, Rutgers University
  • Debra Darby, Organix Solutions
  • Francesco Di Maria,University of Perugia
  • Donna Fennell, Rutgers University
  • Sadhan Ghosh, Jadavpur University
  • Marianthi Ierapetritou, Rutgers University
  • Uta Krogman, Rutgers University
  • Jonathan Krones, Yale University
  • Lise Laurin, EarthShift Global
  • Ronald Mersky, Widener University
  • Ramaswamy Nagarajan, University of Massachusetts Lowell
  • Kim Ogden, University of Arizona 
  • Rik Riman, Rutgers University

The Symposium will focus on the following themes:

Organic Waste & Food Waste 

  • Food Supply chain waste
    • Agricultural waste & feed waste
    • Food Processing waste
    • Other pre-consumer waste from distribution and supermarkets/commercial and residential kitchen waste
    • Post-consumer waste from residential and cafeteria/hotel/hospital waste
  • Collection and logistics
    • Waste contamination and impacts on the efficient conversion for valorization
    • Food waste to Products conversion technologies (existing & emerging)

Plastic Waste

  • Recycling, downcycling and/or upcycling
  • Collection and logistics
    • Contamination
    • Suitable conversion technologies                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

Waste Water Treatment 

  • Innovation and improvements
  • Transitioning for tomorrow

Electronic Waste

  • Material recovery
  • Environmental benefits assessment, LCA
  • Cost Benefit Analysis

Construction & Demolition Waste

  • Technologies and approaches for valorization
  • New Products
  • Energy and material recovery


  • Policy
  • Economic & Managerial
  • Climate Change Mitigation
  • Circular-Economy creation

Assessment of Waste and Products

  • Assessment of waste and valorized end products
  • LCA
  • Technoeconomic analysis
  • Social Sustainability
  • Organic waste integration into Food-Energy Water Nexus Concept

RAPID Session: Modular Waste Valorization

Friday, Dec. 7th, 1pm–3pm (open to all attendees of SPS '18)

RAPID will hold a problem-discovery brainstorming session at the end of the SPS '18 — Innovations in Transforming Waste to Value-Added Products conference to identify the potential role of MCPI in waste valorization. The workshop will convene scientists, engineers, and other stakeholders to identify the challenges in deploying modular decentralized equipment for waste valorization. During the event, RAPID CTO Jim Bielenberg will present an overview of the RAPID manufacturing institute and the institute’s roadmap, highlighting the gaps identified in deploying modular equipment in the chemical processing industries. This will be followed by small group breakouts. There will be plenty of time to ask questions about RAPID and to provide your perspective on where MCPI could have significant impact.

Featured Speakers

Freya Burton

Freya joined LanzaTech in 2007 and has worked in various roles throughout the company. Freya is deeply committed to LanzaTech’s mission of creating a carbon smart future. She is a board member of the Low Carbon Fuels Coalition and with LanzaTech is a founding member of below50, the low carbon fuels initiative of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. Freya oversees Government Relations, Communications and HR at LanzaTech. She holds an MA from Cambridge University.Read more

Douglas Elliott

Doug Elliott spent over 41 years at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory doing research and development with a focus on process development for fuels and chemicals from biomass and waste and is now retired to a part-time status.Read more

Tom Szaky

Tom Szaky is founder and CEO of TerraCycle, a global leader in the collection and repurposing of complex waste streams. TerraCycle operates in 21 countries, working with some of the world’s largest brands, retailers and manufacturers to create national platforms to recycle products and packaging that currently go to landfill or incineration.Read more