Areas of expertise

  • Biomass and Waste
  • Composites
  • Conventional & Advanced Fuels
  • Energy and the Environment
  • Fuels
  • Nanomaterials
  • Process Systems Engineering
  • Renewable Energy
  • Waste Management and Resource Efficiency


Professor Leeke has expertise in high pressure engineering and thermo-chemical processing, specifically in supercritical fluid technology. He has addressed a number of engineering issues in reaction engineering, separation technology, flow reactors, and their applications to polymer/composite processing and remanufacture, organic waste processing, oil upgrading, industrial biotechnology and the circular economy. 

Professor Leeke received his PhD under the direction of the late Michael King from the University of Birmingham in 2000. His PhD research focused on high pressure phase equilibria and mass transfer. After his PhD, Professor Leeke took up a post-doctoral researcher post and then spent a spell in industry where he executed research and development for the oil, gas and water industries. He then returned to Birmingham to undertake further post-doctoral research and was awarded a lectureship in 2006, progressing to Reader in Low Carbon Technologies in 2013. He moved to Cranfield University in 2016 and continues to be an honorary senior researcher at the University of Birmingham, School of Chemical Engineering.

Current activities

Professor Leeke's research is largely focused on recycling enabling technologies, energy production and energy reduction through the design and development of robust resilient processes that lead to new and improved products, including:

Composite recycling and re-manufacture – the EXHUME project

Supercritical fluid technology

Particle formation

High pressure reactions 

Polymer processing 

High pressure phase behaviour

Separation science

Advanced thermal technologies


Gasification technologies and Hybrid CSP-Gasifiers

Biomass and plastics, including mixed plastic waste

Upgrading and refining of material streams 

Steam and supercritical water

Waste and polymers

Dairy processing



Professor Leeke sits on the Composites Leadership Forum Sustainability Working Group for Composites UK and is an editorial board member for Renewable Energy (Elsevier journal).


  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
  • Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
  • Advantage West Midlands
  • Innovate UK
  • European Commission
  • Brazilian, Kuwaiti, Malaysian, Mexican Governments
  • British Council
  • BEIS
  • Recycling Technologies Ltd
  • Sere-Tech Innovation Ltd
  • Cytec Solvay
  • Toyota
  • Pepsico
  • GLW-Feeds
  • Arla
  • GlaxoSmithKline 
  • Johnson Matthey
  • Omniform


Articles In Journals

Conference Papers