Featured Profile: Leon Schumacher
University of Missouri researcher Dr. Leon Schumacher focuses on national fuel and energy problems to enhance rural economies.
With increasing fuel and energy costs, many farmers struggle financially. Schumacher’s research focuses on increasing the health of rural economies to benefit the nation.
Schumacher’s first area of focus is biodiesel – specifically usage in buses, pickup trucks, locomotives and tractors. In his research, he has identified barriers and potential solutions to large-scale biodiesel commercialization production as well as biodiesel benefits like decreased engine wear.
More recently, Schumacher shifted his focus to head a three-year project helping small-animal farmers to reduce their energy costs. Documented energy solutions vary with size and type of farm operation – making it difficult for farmers to know how to implement them. Schumacher helped the farmers identify and procure appropriate energy-efficient technologies, resulting in an average savings of 15 percent annually. While working on this project, anecdotal results suggested that energy-efficient LED lights improved poultry yield. Knowing that global food security is a concern, Schumacher has turned his focus to researching the potential improvement.
Dr. Leon Schumacher is a professor of Agricultural Systems Management in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, and he is a member of MU’s Midwest Energy Efficient Research Consortium (MEERC).
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