Naoko Ellis


MASc and MSc Program Advisor | Associate Director, Clean Energy Research Centre (CERC) | Faculty Associate, Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability (IRES)

Office: CHBE 227


Research Summary

Biomass Utilization, CO2 Capture, Fluidization and Multiphase Systems, Sustainability and Environmental Education, Transdisciplinary Research and Learning


University of British Columbia, 2003, Ph.D.

Western University, 1993, M.E.Sc.

University of Waterloo, 1991, B.Sc., Honours

Research interests + projects

Transdisciplinary Climate Emergency

Exploring complex systems around low carbon futures through transdisciplinary approaches. Collaborating and co-creating with others to advance environmental literacy in higher education and connect with communities and other partners to imagine change. Ongoing curiosity about how collective and relational efforts may help us understand the patterns of interactions and ultimately catalyze effective movements towards hopeful futures.

Transdisciplinary PhD Collaborative on Climate Emergency 

Energy Systems and Transitions

Approaching energy transitions through the lens of systems and as processes, research is conducted by connecting technology and communities (e.g., ACET projects), and academic, public and private stakeholders for regional and national decarbonization strategies (e.g., BC CCUS visioning workshop).

Multiphase Systems and Reaction Engineering

Understanding the hydrodynamics of fluidized beds as critical to the design and scaling of fluidized bed reactors that are used as various reactors. Deploying various measurement techniques and modeling methods to study and predict the behaviour of fluidized beds and other multiphase reactors. Fluidized bed applications include biomass utilization for energy production and carbon capture through looping systems.

Essentials of Fluidization Technology Textbook

Awards and honours

American Institute for Chemical Engineering Powder Technology Forum PSRI Lectureship Award in Fluidization, 2022

NSERC University Faculty Award , 2003

Scholarly and professional activities + affiliations

Systems Beings Lab 2023 

DN Education Design 2022

Fluidization Research Centre, University of British Columbia 2022

Clean Energy Research Centre, University of British Columbia 2022

Transdisciplinary PhD Collaborative on Climate Emergency 2022

UBC Sustainability Initiative 2016

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning 2015

Carbon Capture & Conversion Institute 2015

UBC APSC Sustainability Pathway Initiative 2014

Full Publications List

Selected publications + presentations

Chintalapati, P., Evans, G., Gladwin, G., Jamieson, M., Ellis, N., “Shaping Futures: A Dialogue on Chemical Engineering Education”, Can. J. Chem. Eng. (2024)

Ramachandran, A., Schwellnus, M., Gladwin, D., Derby-Talbot, R., Ellis, N., “Cultivating Educational Adaptability through Collaborative Transdisciplinary Learning Spaces”, Discover Education, 3:2, (2024).

Gladwin, D., Ellis, N., “Energy Literacy: Towards a Conceptual Framework for Energy Transition”, Environmental Education Research, 1-15 (2023).

Tembrevilla, G., Nesbit, S., Ellis, N., & Ostafichuk, P., “Developing Transdisciplinarity in First‐year Engineering”, Journal of Engineering Education. (2022)

Cheng, L., Wu, Z., Zhang, Z., Guo, C., Ellis, N., Bi, X., Watkinson, A.P., Grace, J.R., “Tar Elimination from Biomass Gasification Syngas with Bauxite Residue Derived Catalysts and Gasification Char”, Applied Energy, 258, 114088 (2020).