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Pahola Thathiana Benavides Gallego

Energy Systems Analyst

Sustainability Analysis of fuels and bioproducts, Life-cycle analysis, Fuels and Products Group


Dr. Benavides has a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering and Operation Research from University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and a Bachelor degree in Chemical Engineering from National University of Colombia. In her Ph.D., she worked on the improvement of biodiesel production by finding optimal production strategies and operating policies. She also worked on a project related to sustainability in which the objective was to determine the controllability of different complex networks that simulate the dynamic behavior of the Earth. Currently, Dr. Benavides is working at Argonne National Laboratory in the Systems Assessment group since 2015. At Argonne, Dr. Benavides has been investigating the energy and environmental effects (Life-Cycle Analysis) of thermochemical and biochemical conversion processes that produce fuels, bio-derived fuels, and bio-based chemicals. She has also worked on the production of catalysts and impact on the life-cycle of biofuels, the fate of catalyst waste materials—both from catalyst production processes and catalyst-using processes. Dr. Benavides has been collaborating with other national laboratories on relevant projects supported by the US Department of Energy such as evaluation of bioproducts through the Clean Energy Manufacturing Analysis Center (CEMAC), Agile Biofoundry, and Co-Optimization of Fuels and Engines (Co-Optima). Dr. Benavides’ work has been incorporated into Argonne’s Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model.