Introducing Professor Joel Cuello as Interim Vice Chair of AVF

Joel Cuello, AVF VIce-Chairman

Joel L. Cuello is a Professor of Biosystems Engineering and Director of the Global Initiative for Strategic Agriculture in Dry Lands (GISAD) at The University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, U.S.A.

A globally recognized expert in the engineering of sustainable biological and agricultural systems, his technical expertise in both engineering and biology provides the platform for engineering designs in various agricultural and biological systems with emphasis on optimizing biological and agricultural productivities while fostering resource sustainability and environmental protection.

Prof. Cuello has designed, constructed and implemented varied types of engineered agricultural or biological systems, including those applied in bioregenerative space life support, vertical farming, plant tissue culture, micropropagation, industrial mass production of algae and plant cell and microbial cultures for production of biomass, nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, etc. He is the Principal Inventor of the patented algae photobioreactor series — the Accordion photobioreactors — and is the creator of the Minimally Structured, Modular and Prefabricated Vertical Farm design (the Vertical Greenbox® Solution) that is considered an archetypal design for Vertical Farming 2.0.

Prof. Cuello conducted his postdoctoral research in the Controlled Ecological Life Support System Division at NASA John F. Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida as a U.S. National Research Council Postdoctoral Research Associate.

He earned his Ph.D. in Agricultural & Biological Engineering, with Minor in Chemical Engineering, from The Pennsylvania State University in 1994. He also earned two M.S. degrees (Agricultural & Biological Engineering;  Plant Physiology) from The Pennsylvania State University. He obtained his B.S. in Agricultural Engineering (cum laude) from the University of the Philippines at Los Banos. He is a lifetime Visiting Professor at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China and a Faculty Fellow at the Innovation Center of the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines.

Prof. Cuello has published over 60 refereed journal publications and 11 book chapters, and has delivered over 300 professional presentations around the world. As major advisor, he has graduated 26 Ph.D. and M.S. students, and has mentored three postdoctoral research associates, five international visiting Ph.D. candidates and 10 international visiting scientists and professors. Prof. Cuello has lectured and has been invited as Guest or Keynote Speaker around the world, including in Brazil, China, South Korea, Israel, Palestine, Germany, United Kingdom, Canada, Chile, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, India, Italy, Jordan, Egypt, Japan, Australia, Spain, Singapore, Thailand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Prof. Cuello has developed and currently teaches the courses “Globalization, Sustainability and Innovation” and “Engineered Sustainable Solutions in the Food, Water, Energy Nexus” at The University of Arizona.

You can read A Conversation with Joel Cuello from April 2, 2018 on the AVF Blog here

You can also click here to watch the conversation recorded spring of last year.

Kyle Baldock

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