Julie Blumreiter

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Julie Blumreiter

2019 Climate Fellow
Founder of ClearFlame Engines with Bernard Johnson

Julie Blumreiter 2019 Climate Fellow

Bold Idea 

Provide access to goods and electricity without harming the environment by modifying diesel engines to use clean, locally sourced biofuels.


ClearFlame co-founders Dr. BJ Johnson and Dr. Julie Blumreiter make adjustments to a prototype system installed on the company work truck. Photo credit: Wes Agresta – Argonne National Laboratory

ClearFlame co-founders Dr. BJ Johnson and Dr. Julie Blumreiter stand next to the retrofitted company work truck at Chain Reaction Innovations Demo Day in 2018. Photo credit: ClearFlame Engines

The diesel engine is critical to global economies and quality of life, moving 70 percent of the world's goods, but it also poses a massive environmental challenge. ClearFlame modifies diesel engines to use clean-burning, locally sourced biofuels. Its solution drastically reduces emissions without sacrificing the performance needed in both developed and developing nations. ClearFlame’s renewable redesign of the combustion engine will allow it to play a vital role in applications where electric vehicles are challenged, opening additional pathways to lower the carbon footprint of the transportation sector.


Julie Blumreiter is the CTO and co-founder of ClearFlame Engines. Her dream is to lead an unstoppable team of engineers to solve big problems like the air quality and climate impact of heavy-duty transportation in a way that works for economies worldwide. ClearFlame is leveraging locally produced, renewable biofuels for higher engine efficiency and higher power output while producing lower soot emissions and lower fuel costs. Julie has led the company to secure nearly $2M in non-dilutive funding to date, and in 2017 ClearFlame gained entrance into the Department of Energy–funded Chain Reaction Innovations program at Argonne National Laboratory. Julie received her MS and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, where her research focused on energy systems and transportation engines. From 2008 to 2009, Julie lived in a marginal community in Costa Rica, where her commitment to use engineering to better society became grounded in the tangible differences in quality of life tied to energy access that she observed while working with local community organizations to end child exploitation and empower single mothers. Julie is a 2019 Echoing Green Fellow.

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