Webinar description A low-carbon future does not mean the end of combustion. Fuels will continue to play a role – this webinar explores the role of fuels in a low carbon future. Including the specific applications for these fuels, the possible pathways of creating these fuels, and their economic and environmental impact.

Key takeaways:    What are these fuels?  Where do they come from?  Why do they matter?

Objective:  Educate decision makers around fuels and power sources.

Audience:  Policy makers, industry experts, local utilities, consultants, regulators, academia, researchers. students, educators, community

Original air date:  Thursday, April 29, 2021  (60 minute webinar)

Cost:  Free of charge. Please register to watch re-posted video first if you haven’t already.  Click here

Click to watch re-posted video of the webinar

Co-Hosts:  Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory (An energy research partnership since 2007 between University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University, and National Renewable Energy Lab) and Wärtsilä Energy

Webinar host and for more info:  Maury.Dobbie@ColoradoCollaboratory.org  Executive Director, Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory 970-682-5707 (cell/text)

Moderator:  Dr. Bryan Willson, Executive Director, Energy Institute, Colorado State University


  • Saara Kujala, General Manager, Business Development, Wärtsilä    Saara Kujala PPT slides
  • Jason Quinn, Director, Sustainability Research Laboratory, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Colorado State University  Jason Quinn PPT slides
  • Petteri Laaksonen, Research Director, Lappeenranta University of Technology LUT  Petteri Laaksonen PPT



Dr. Bryan Willson
Executive Director
Energy Institute
Colorado State University

Dr. Bryan Willson is Executive Director of the Energy Institute at Colorado State University, where he also occupies the Bryan Willson Presidential Chair in Energy Innovation and serves as a Professor of Mechanical Engineering. CSU’s Energy Institute comprises over 200 faculty members working in energy and works closely with the Colorado energy startup community to help grow clean energy companies.  The Energy Institute is headquartered at CSU’s Powerhouse Energy Campus, a 100,000 sq ft research facility that also houses over 15 early stage energy companies; it’s work on cleantech commercialization has been honored by the Economist, Scientific American, the Smithsonian Institution, university technology transfer associations, and the governments of Denmark, Spain, and China.  Dr. Willson served as a Program Director at ARPA-E (Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy, from 2012-2016 and continued as a consultant / advisor to the agency until early 2019.  He has worked for over 30 years to develop and deploy large-scale technology solutions related to energy, air quality, and human health.  As an entrepreneur, Dr. Willson is co-founder of Envirofit International, Solix BioSystems, Factor(e) Ventures and Xpower. His research laboratory, the Engines & Energy Conversion Laboratory, has made important contributions in many areas, including: internal combustion engines, advanced vehicles, oil & gas production technology, advanced electrical grids, advanced biofuels, energy access for the developing world, and advanced building technologies.  Dr. Willson is a Fellow of the Society of Automotive Engineers and has worked in over 40 countries.


Saara Kujala
General Manager, Business Development
Wärtsilä Energy

Contributing to a cleaner energy future keeps Saara Kujala, General Manager, Business Development at Wärtsilä Energy, going. With her experience in energy transition, sustainable power generation, and power system optimisation, Saara leads a team of power system modelling experts.  Together, the team is advising energy decision makers on optimal paths towards a 100% renewable energy future. They have already provided modelling, optimisation, and step-by-step guidance to nearly 150 countries in their search for more sustainable power systems.   While living in Singapore, Saara led power plant and liquified natural gas terminal project development in Asia, with a portfolio of more than 600 MW of independent power producer projects under development. She is now based in Finland and is currently managing local Power-to-Gas initiatives that aim to convert emissions of CO2 to renewable synthetic fuels. After publishing her co-authored book about wind power and flexibility, Saara has frequently and publicly promoted Finland’s optimal path towards decarbonisation.   Saara holds an MSc degree in Industrial Engineering and Energy Markets. In her free time, she enjoys horseback riding and appreciates the nuances of the sport, which combines the adrenaline rush of galloping with an authentic connection to such a majestic animal.   linkedin.com/in/saara-kujala/

Jason Quinn
Director, Sustainability Research Laboratory
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Colorado State University

Dr. Quinn’s education and research have always been centered on energy, with current work focused on techno-economic assessment, life cycle assessment, and system optimization.  This skill set is currently being applied to a variety of emerging technologies including microalgae biofuels, desert southwest agriculture, small modular nuclear systems, electrified transportation, waste to energy, and electrical grid energy storage.  Research efforts are dedicated to the development of engineering system models validated through experimentation and leveraged for techno-economic feasibility, life cycle assessment, and resource demand of emerging technologies.  Results from modeling work are used to focus research and development efforts to high impact areas.  Dr. Quinn completed a master’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in nuclear engineering and engineering physics, and a Ph.D. at Colorado State University.

Petteri Laaksonen
Research Director
Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology (LUT)

Dr. Petteri Laaksonen is a Research Director at Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology (LUT), Energy Systems School. The focus of his research is in renewable energy systems and power generation in view of industrial engineering and economics. His current projects include speeding up decarbonisation of public buildings, bearingless electronic motors (Twin Bearingless), synthesis, carbon neutral fuels, P2X (Case Nebraska), hermetic high speed AMB generator as well as the financing and profitability of research and development projects.  Previously, Petteri was Chairman of the Board at Celere Investments Oy and Lähituuli Oy as well as a managing director and partner at TuuliSaimaa Oy. Petteri also previously taught as an Associate Professor of Wind Energy Research at LUT.   Petteri has a doctorate in science and masters of science degree from LUT University.  linkedin.com/in/petteri-laaksonen-7063573/