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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - IRI THESys

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Projects | IRI THESys | People | Mario Alejandro Heredia Salgado

Mario Alejandro Heredia Salgado

Guest Scientist in the research group Multifunctional Landscapeat at IRI-THESYS Humboldt Universität zu Berlin/ Research Fellow at Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM) of the Aveiro University, Portugal
  • Thermo-chemical conversion of residual biomass
  • Renewable energy, negative emissions technologies and carbon sequestration
  • Nature based solutions: ecosystems based adaptation and mitigation


Mario A. Heredia Salgado is research fellow of the Department of Environment and Planning of the Aveiro University in Portugal and of the Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM). He is also the co-founder of Andes Bioenergy, which is a SME settled in Ecuador dedicated to design, assembly and install thermochemical conversion devices that transform agro-residues into carbon-related products and renewable energy. Mario got his engineering degree at the International University of Ecuador (UIDE) as Cum Laude in 2008. In Ecuador, he has provided professional services to companies related to construction, industry, oil and mining sectors. In 2011, he was funded by SENESCYT to study a master course in sustainable energy systems at Aveiro University in Portugal. In 2013, Mario performed as fellow researcher in the energy efficiency program G20-20-20 at the Portuguese oil and gas company GALP. His work regarding open source platforms and energy efficiency in gas burners received the second-place award in the GALP Innovation Challenge 2013. In 2014, Mario was funded by IFTH-Ecuador to start a Doctoral Program in Energy Systems and Climate Change in the Aveiro University. His research focused on the development of an integrated and modular combustion and pyrolysis reactor able to up-cycle agro-residues into carbon-related products and renewable energy. This research work has been awarded by the Ecuadorian Agriculture Ministry for two consecutive times (2015-2016), by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) with the Green Talent award in 2018 and by the German International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre ISC3 in 2019.

Currently, Mario study the links between the technologies for thermochemical conversion of agro-residues, the nature based solutions and the design of multifunctional landscapes in the rural and urban sectors under the guidance of the Dr Ina Säumel of the Multifunctional Landscapes Research Group of the Research Institute on Transformations of Human-Environment Systems (IRI THESys).

In the rural sector, there is a range of thermochemical conversion technologies (copy-right subjected and open source designs) that aim the up-cycle of agro-residues gener-ated during the post-harvesting processes into carbon-related products and renewable energy. The development and implementation of these conversion technologies barely consider the concepts of multifunctionality, citizen science and others recently pro-moted within the nature-based solutions approach. Supported by the AG Multifunc-tional Landscapes led by Dr. Ina Säumel, Mario A. Heredia Salgado's research deals with the evolution of ther-mochemical conversion processes into multifunctional infraestructures, that linked with rural or urban communities, may become tools to support the low carbon devel-opment and face climate changes. 


"The interdisciplinary character of the IRI THESys provided me a deeper experience of science. For me, the IRI THESys community is a continuous source of inspiration and up-to-date concepts that let me explore technology in a broader context."  Mario A. Heredia Salgado


Selected publications

i.    Mario A Heredia S., Jonathan Coba S., Luís A.C. Tarelho. “Simultaneous pro-duction of biochar and thermal energy using palm oil residual biomass as feedstock in an auto-thermal prototype reactor”. Journal of Cleaner Produc-tion. Vol 266 (2020). doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2020.121804

ii.    Heredia Salgado MA, Tarelho LAC, Matos A, Robaina M, Narváez R, Peralta ME. Thermoeconomic analysis of integrated production of biochar and pro-cess heat from quinoa and lupin residual biomass. Energy Policy 2017; 114:332–41. doi:10.1016/j.jhep.2009.07.006.

iii.    Heredia Salgado MA, Tarelho LAC, Matos A. Analysis of Combined Biochar and Torrefied Biomass Fuel Production as Alternative for Residual Biomass Valorization Generated in Small-Scale Palm Oil Mills. Waste and Biomass Va-lorization 2018; 9:1–14. doi:10.1007/s12649-018-0467-7.

iv.    Heredia Salgado MA, Tarelho LAC, Matos MAA, Rivadeneira D, Narváez C RA. Palm oil kernel shell as solid fuel for the commercial and industrial sector in Ecuador: tax incentive impact and performance of a prototype burner. Jour-nal of Cleaner Production 2018;213:104–13. doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2018.12.133.

v.    Heredia Salgado MA, Tarelho LAC, Rivadeneira-Rivera DA, Ramirez V, Sinche D. Energetic valorization of the residual biomass produced during Jatropha curcas oil extraction. Renewable Energy 2019; 146:1640–8. doi: 10.1016/j.renene.2019.07.154.