Phone: (309) 681-6233
Dr. Cermak was trained as an organic chemist at the University of Iowa and has over 20 years of research experience in the Bio-Oils Research Unit at NCAUR. He currently serves as lead scientist of the new crops CRIS. He has co-authored more than 100 publications and 6 patents. His research accomplishments are well recognized nationally and internationally as evidenced by numerous invitations to speak at national and international meetings (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Mexico, Chile, and Canada) and special invitations to industry and specialty groups.
Dr. Cermak was recognized by the American Oil Chemists' Society (AOCS) in 2001 by receiving the New Crop sessions "Outstanding Paper Presentation." He was awarded the 2006 "Researcher of the Year" Award by an international society (Association for the Advancement of Industrial Crops, AAIC). In 2011 and 2016, Dr. Cermak was awarded the Technology Transfer Midwest Region Award for Excellence in Technology Transfer by the Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC). He served as chair of the 2009 International AAIC Meeting, Chile. He organized and served as chair for the 2004 Great Lakes Regional American Chemical Society (ACS) Meeting; additionally, served as treasurer (four years) for the award-winning Peoria ACS Section. He also serves on the Editorial Board of the Industrial Crops and Products Journal.
Dr. Cermak has also served as Principal Investigator (PI) on six agreements for the development of lubricants and development of cuphea as well as PI on three CRADAs for the development of lubricants. His research has been directed toward synthetic and mechanistic organic chemistry, chemistry of fats/oils and the development of products from new crops.
The objective of Dr. Cermak's research is to develop new concepts and new industrial products and processes in utilizing new crops or off-season crops (lesquerella, pennycress, and coriander) and oil for the U.S. Specific areas of study include:
-Lubrication - developments of new and biobased drop-ins
-Vegetable based lubrication enhanced physical properties
-Cosmetics - developments of new and biobased drop-ins
-New crops selections for the U.S.
-Industrial/Commercial biobased drop-ins
-Identification of new crops
Results of this research will be additional new crop products commercialized which will provide the U.S. farmers additional crops to grow. Additionally, the off-season crops will allow the U.S. farmers to have an additional source of income with these second season crops.
-Lesquerella article in Ag Research Mag” Mulching and Guar Gum. page 7, Jan 2014