Information for

David Simakov

Assistant Professor

Professor Simakov’s research focuses on advanced heterogeneous catalysis and reactor design for sustainable reaction engineering, including conversion of greenhouse gases into renewable synthetic fuels.

Similarly to the way plants use photosynthesis to convert sunlight, carbon dioxide and water into their food, synthetic molecules can be generated from carbon dioxide and water using renewable energy. Our research group uses state-of-the-art catalysis and advanced reactor design to develop processes for generation of synthetic fuels and platform chemicals from greenhouse gases using wind, solar and other renewable sources of energy. The ultimate goal is to develop sustainable technologies that will decrease our dependence on fossil fuels and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


  • PhD, Chemical Engineering, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel
  • MSc, Chemical Engineering, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel
  • Diploma, Far Eastern State University of Humanities, Khabarovsk, Russia

Research Interests

Our group uses chemical reaction engineering to design sustainable processes for converting greenhouse gases into renewable synthetic fuels and platform chemicals. We develop novel catalytic systems based on emerging materials and design highly efficient reactors using modeling tools and experiments. Our current research projects are listed below:

  • Emerging catalytic materials for CO2 activation
  • Nano-structured catalysts for thermo-catalytic conversion of CO2
  • Reactor design for CO2 conversion into renewable natural gas and methanol
  • System design for production of renewable synthetic fuels from biogas 


Selected References

Journal publications

S.A.M. Said, M. Waseeuddin & D.S.A. Simakov. A review on solar reforming systems. Renew. Sust. Energ. Rev. 59, 149‐159 (2016).

S.A.M. Said, D.S.A. Simakov, M. Waseeuddin & Y. Román‐Leshkov. Solar molten salt heated membrane reformer for natural gas upgrading and hydrogen generation: A CFD model. Sol. Energy 124, 163‐176 (2016).

S.A.M. Said, D.S.A. Simakov, E.M.A. Mokheimer, M.A. Habib, S. Ahmed, M. Waseeuddin & Y. Román‐Leshkov. Computational fluid dynamics study of hydrogen generation by low temperature methane reforming in a membrane reactor. Int. J. Hydrogen Energy. 40, 3158–3169 (2015).

D.S.A. Simakov, H.Y. Luo & Y. Román‐Leshkov. Ultra‐low loading Ru/g‐Al2O3: a highly active and stable catalyst for low temperature solar thermal reforming of methane. Appl. Catal. B: Environ. 169, 540–549 (2015).

D.S.A. Simakov, M.M. Wright, S. Ahmed, E.M.A. Mokheimer & Y. Román‐Leshkov. Solar thermal reforming of natural gas: a review on chemistry, catalysis and system design. Catal. Sci. Technol. 5, 1991‐2016 (2015).

D.S.A. Simakov & M. Sheintuch. Model‐based optimization of hydrogen generation by methane steam reforming in autothermal packed‐bed membrane reformer. AIChE J. 57, 525‐541 (2011).

Book chapters

M. Sheintuch & D.S.A. Simakov. Alkanes dehydrogenation. In Membrane Reactors for Hydrogen Production Processes (Springer‐Verlag London Ltd 2011).


S. Gottesfeld, D. Dekel, Z. Gottesfeld & D.S.A. Simakov. Alkaline membrane fuel cells and apparatus and methods for supplying water thereto. US Patent 8,257,872 (2012).

S. Gottesfeld, D. Dekel & D.S.A. Simakov. Catalyst coated membrane and catalyst film/layer for alkaline membrane fuel cells and methods of making same. US Patent 8,304,368 (2012).

D.S.A. Simakov & M. Sheintuch. Hydrogen production by an autothermal heat exchanger packed‐bed membrane gas reformer. US Patent App. 13/387,841 (2010).


MASc and PhD positions are available in the areas of advanced catalysis and reactor design for thermocatalytic conversion of CO2 into synthetic fuels. The project is funded by NSERC and WISE.

University of Waterloo