Principal Investigator


Dr. Rafael Catapan’s research is centered on advancing alternative fuel technologies and catalytic combustion. He is particularly focused on integrating catalytic afterburners with solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) systems and improving biodiesel production using plasma-assisted methods.

Since his PhD, he has developed chemical kinetics mechanisms for catalytic reactions, notably in ethanol oxidation and reforming, employing DFT calculations and a thermodynamically consistent approach for detailed kinetic mechanisms.

His work extends to developing advanced materials for energy conversion, particularly ethanol reforming catalysts like Pt/Al2O3 and Ni/Al2O3 for automotive and alternative fuel technologies, and recently, geopolymers-based 3D printed monoliths.

In collaboration with industry, he has contributed to projects like gas-powered textile dryers using radiant burners and a roadmap for ammonia combustion, highlighting his commitment to sustainable and efficient industrial solutions.

Postdoctoral scholars


  • Maira Oliveira Palm
  • Rafael Vidal Eleutério

Graduate students


  • Guilherme De Pieri Pickler
  • Ellen Pietschmann
  • Jéssica Florinda Zeitoune
  • Augusto Panzo Cabumda

Undergraduate students


  • Eduardo Foster Beathalter
  • Beatriz Letícia Binotto
  • Vitor Lenz Stepan
  • Lucas Yudi Pavani
  • Ana Carolina da Silva Luz



  • Rafael Vidal Eleutério, Dr.Eng (2023) – UFSC
  • Jaisson Vidal, M.Eng. (2023) – Entrerpreneur
  • Andrey Mello dos Santos, M.Eng. (2020) – CISER
  • Guilherme Pellizzaro Batalha, M.Eng. (2019)
  • Gustavo Elicker Coelho, M.Eng. (2018) – Catarinense Pharma
  • Jean Carlo Bona, M.Eng. (2018) – NIDEC
  • Maira de Oliveira Palm, M.Eng. (2017), Dr.Eng. (2022) – UFSC
  • Herlon de Faveri Linemburg, M.Eng. (2017)