Areas of expertise
Dr Raffaella Villa joined the Cranfield University in 2007 as Lecturer in Bioprocess Technology. She graduated in 1993 from the University of Milan in Food Science and Technologies, where she also did her PhD in applied biological catalysis.
She was Associate Dean for the Faculty of Science, Environment and Manufacturing from 2012 till 2015, and currently lead of the Water theme Doctoral Training Centre.
Raffaella is an applied microbiologist with particular expertise in microbial and enzymatic processes, which she has adapted to the waste and environmental sectors. She has established herself as an international authority in anaerobic science and she is widely recognised nationally in this capacity – endorsed, for example, via her appointment as the national AD technical support for WRAP in 2013.
She currently leads a group of seven PhD students and coordinates the virtual Centre for Anaerobic Science, which includes a pilot Anaerobic Digestion facility.
She has published over 40 research papers, books and conference proceedings with substantive contributions to biotransformations and biocatalysis.
- Anaerobic digestion of biodegradable municipal solid waste
- Microalgal remediation and sludge digestion
- Fat, Oil and Greases (FOG) removal treatments
- Bioremediation and nutrients removal
- Biotransformation of waste into added value compounds
- Impact of Engineered Nanoparticles (ENP) on the operation of wastewater treatment.
WRAP, WRc, Anglian Water, Viridor, Shanks, AddEnergy, Mechline, Biological Preparations Bio-Industries, BioSystem Europe, CBio, Environmental Biotech, Lake, NCH and Organica
Articles In Journals
- Frank RR, Cipullo S, Garcia J, Davies S, Wagland ST, Villa R, Trois C & Coulon F (2017) Compositional and physicochemical changes in waste materials and biogas production across 7 landfill sites in UK, Waste Management, 63 (May) 11-17.
- Balampanis D, Coulon F, Simms N, Longhurst P, Pollard S, Fenech C & Villa R (2017) An assessment of different extraction and quantification methods of penta- and hexa-chlorobenzene from SRF fly-ash, Analytical Chemistry Research, 12 (June) 28-33.
- Ramos AM, Whelan MJ, Cosgrove S, Villa R, Jefferson B, Campo P, Jarvis P & Guymer I A multi‐component method to determine pesticides in surface water by liquid‐chromatography tandem quadrupole mass spectrometry, Water and Environment Journal, Early online.
- Eduok S, Ferguson R, Jefferson B, Villa R & Coulon F (2017) Aged-engineered nanoparticles effect on sludge anaerobic digestion performance and associated microbial communities, Science of the Total Environment, 609 232-241.
- Whitton R, Le Mével A, Pidou M, Ometto F, Villa R & Jefferson B. (2016) Influence of microalgal N and P composition on wastewater nutrient remediation, Water Research, 91 371-378.
- Ferguson RMW, Coulon F & Villa R (2016) Organic Loading Rate: a promising microbial management tool in anaerobic digestion, Water Research, 100 (September) 348-356.
- García J, Davies S, Villa R, Gomes DM, Coulon F & Wagland ST (2016) Compositional analysis of excavated landfill samples and the determination of residual biogas potential of the organic fraction, Waste Management, 55 (September) 336-344.
- Frank RR, Davies S, Wagland ST, Villa R, Trois C & Coulon F (2016) Evaluating leachate recirculation with cellulase addition to enhance waste biostabilisation and landfill gas production, Waste Management, 55 (September) 61-70.
- Sadhukhana S, Villa R & Sarkar U (2016) Microbial production of succinic acid using crude and purified glycerol from a Crotalaria juncea based biorefinery, Biotechnology Reports, 10 (June) 84-93.
- Whitton R, Ometto F, Pidou M, Jarvis P, Villa R & Jefferson B (2015) Microalgae for municipal wastewater nutrient remediation: mechanisms, reactors and outlook for tertiary treatment, Environmental Technology Reviews, 4 (1) 133-148.
- Eduok S, Hendry C, Ferguson R, Martin B, Villa R, Jefferson B & Coulon F (2015) Insights into the effect of mixed engineered nanoparticles on activated sludge performance, FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 91 (7).
- Ometto F, Whitton R, Coulon F, Jefferson B & Villa R (2014) Improving the energy balance of an integrated microalgal wastewater treatment process, Waste and Biomass Valorization, 5 (2) 245-253.
- Ometto F, Quiroga G, Pšeničkac P, Whitton R, Jefferson B & Villa R (2014) Impacts of microalgae pre-treatments for improved anaerobic digestion: Thermal treatment, thermal hydrolysis, ultrasound and enzymatic hydrolysis, Water Research, 65 350-361.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Soares A, Villa R, Vale P & Cartmell E (2014) Carbon capture and biogas enhancement by carbon dioxide enrichment of anaerobic digesters treating sewage sludge or food waste, Bioresource Technology, 159 1-7.
- Ferguson RMW, Villa R & Coulon F (2014) Bioengineering options and strategies for the optimization of anaerobic digestion processes, Environmental Technology, 3 (1) 1-14.
- Ometto F, Pozza C, Whitton R, Smyth B, Torres AG, Henderson RK, Jarvis P, Jefferson B & Villa R (2014) The impacts of replacing air bubbles with microspheres for the clarification of algae from low cell-density culture, Water Research, 53 (April) 168-179.
- Eduok S, Martin B, Villa R, Nocker A, Jefferson B & Coulon F (2013) Evaluation of engineered nanoparticle toxic effect on wastewater microorganisms: current status and challenges, Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 95 (September) 1-9.
- Pankhurst LJ, Whitby C, Pawlett M, Larcombe LD, McKew B, Deacon LJ, Morgan SL, Villa R, Drew GH, Tyrrel S, Pollard SJ & Coulon F (2012) Temporal and spatial changes in the microbial bioaerosol communities in green-waste composting., FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 79 (1) 229-239.
- Romano D, Villa R & Molinari F (2012) Preparative biotransformations: oxidation of alcohols, ChemCatChem, 4 (6) 739-749.
- Zambelli P, Pinto A, Romano D, Crotti E, Conti P, Tamborini L, Villa R & Molinari F (2012) One-pot chemoenzymatic synthesis of aldoximes from primary alcohols in water, Green Chemistry, 14 (8) 2158-2161.
- Whelan MJ, Everitt T & Villa R (2010) A mass transfer model of ammonia volatilisation from anaerobic digestate, Waste Management, 30 (10) 1808-1812.
- Adu-Gyamfi KA, Villa R & Coulon F (2010) Renewable energy, landfill gas and EfW: now, next and future, Communications in Waste and Resource Management, 10 (1) 4-12.
- Balampanis DE, Pollard SJT, Simms N, Longhurst P, Coulon F & Villa R (2010) Residues characterisation from the fluidised bed combustion of East London's solid recovered fuel, Waste Management, 30 (7) 1318-1324.
- Coulon F, Whelan MJ, Paton GI, Semple KT, Villa R & Pollard SJT (2010) Multimedia fate of petroleum hydrocarbons in the soil: Oil matrix of constructed biopiles, Chemosphere, 81 (11) 1454-1462.
- Villa R & Molinari F (2008) Reduction of carbonylic and carboxylic groups by plant cell cultures, Journal of Natural Products, 71 (4) 693-696.
- Villa R & Molinari F (2008) Reduction of carbonylic and carboxylic group's by plant cell cultures, Journal of Natural Products, 71 (4) 693-696.
- Romano D, Gandolfi R, Gualandris R, Romano A, Starace F, Villa R & Molinari F (2007) Solid state fermentation for the production of lipolytic fungal enzymes, Annals of Microbiology, 57 (4) 561-564.
- Molinari F, Gandolfi R, Villa R, Urban E & Kiener A (2003) Enantioselective oxidation of prochiral 2-methyl-1,3-propandiol by Acetobacter pasteurianus, Tetrahedron: Asymmetry, 14 (14) 2041-2043.
- Villa R, Romano A, Gandolfi R, Sinisterra Gago JV & Molinari F (2002) Chemoselective oxidation of primary alcohols to aldehydes with Gluconobacter oxydans, Tetrahedron Letters, 43 (34) 6059-6061.
- Molinari F, Villa R, Aragozzini F, Leon R & Prazeres DMF (1999) Enantioselective oxidation of (RS)-2-phenyl-1-propanol to (S)-2-phenylpropanoic acid with Gluconobacter oxydans: Simplex optimization of the biotransformation, Tetrahedron: Asymmetry, 10 (15) 3003-3009.
- Molinari F, Gandolfi R, Villa R & Occhiato EG (1999) Lyophilised yeasts: Easy-to-handle biocatalysts for stereoselective reduction of ketones, Tetrahedron: Asymmetry, 10 (18) 3515-3520.
- Molinari F, Villa R & Aragozzini F (1998) Production of geranyl acetate and other acetates by direct esterification catalyzed by mycelium of Rhizopus delemar in organic solvent, Biotechnology Letters, 20 (1) 41-44.
- Molinari F, Mantegazza L, Villa R & Aragozzini F (1998) Resolution of 2-alkanols by microbially-catalyzed esterification, Journal of Fermentation and Bioengineering, 86 (1) 62-64.
- Villa R, Molinari F, Levati M & Aragozzini F (1998) Stereoselective reduction of ketones by plant cell cultures, Biotechnology Letters, 20 (12) 1105-1108.
- Villa R & Willetts A (1997) Oxidations by microbial NADH plus FMN-dependent luciferases from Photobacterium phosphoreum and Vibrio fischeri, Journal of Molecular Catalysis B: Enzymatic, 2 (4-5) 193-197.
- Adger B, Bes MT, Grogan G, McCague R, Pedragosa-Moreau S, Roberts SM, Villa R, Wan PWH & Willetts AJ (1997) The synthesis of (R)-(+)-lipoic acid using a monooxygenase-catalysed biotransformation as the key step, Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, 5 (2) 253-261.
- Molinari F, Villa R, Aragozzini F, Cabella P, Barbeni M & Squarcia F (1997) Multigram-scale production of aliphatic carboxylic acids by oxidation of alcohols with Acetobacter pasteurianus NCIMB 11664, Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 70 (3) 294-298.
- Bes MT, Villa R, Roberts SM, Wan PWH & Willetts A (1996) Oxidative biotransformations by microorganisms: Production of chiral synthons by cyclopentanone monooxygenase from Pseudomonas sp NCIMB 9872, Journal of Molecular Catalysis B: Enzymatic, 1 (3-6) 127-134.
- Molinari F, Villa R, Manzoni M & Aragozzini F (1995) Aldehyde production by alcohol oxidation with Gluconobacter oxydans, Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 43 (6) 989-994.
- Adger B, Bes MT, Grogan G, McCague R, Pedragosamoreau S, Roberts SM, Villa R, Wan Pwh & Willettes AJ (1995) Application of enzymic Baeyer–Villiger oxidations of 2-substituted cycloalkanones to the total synthesis of (R)-(+)-lipoic acid, Journal of the Chemical Society, Chemical Communications (15) 1563-1564.
- Gagnon R, Grogan G, Roberts SM, Villa R & Willetts AJ (1995) ChemInform Abstract: Enzymatic Baeyer-Villiger Oxidations of Some Bicyclo(2.2.1)heptan-2- ones Using Monooxygenases from Pseudomonas putida NCIMB 10007: Enantioselective Preparation of a Precursor of Azadirachtin., Journal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions 1, 1995 (12) 1505-1511.
- Marson S, Villa R, Cardenas-Durazo I, Evans RW, Storti A, Heaume A, Marinello F, Carmignato S, Fairley M, Jennings P & Allen DM (2013) Sinusoidal CVD diamond micro-tools for the manufacture of microstructured surfaces used in bioremediation. In: 6th International Conference on Micro Manufacturing 2011 (ICOMM2011), Tokyo, 7 March 2010.
- San Juan MG, Ometto F, Whitton R, Pidou M, Jefferson B & Villa R (2017) Energy recovery from immobilised cells of Scenedesmus obliquus after wastewater treatment. In: Frontiers in Wastewater Treatment and Modelling. Mannina G (ed.), Springer, p. 266-271.
- Molinari F, Romano D, Villa R & Clark J (2011) Production of Fine Chemicals by (Bio)Transformation of Agro-Food Byproducts and Wastes. In: Environmental biotechnology and safety. Ed. in chief: Murray Moo-Young (ed.), Oxford: Elsevier, p. 547-556, ed. 2nd edition.