Fischbein operates a series of fermenters for Coskata, a next-generation biofuel start-up that makes fuel-grade ethanol from synthesis gas. The process is amazingly feedstock-flexible, as the gas can be made from anything from switchgrass to corn stover to municipal waste. Fischbein runs experiments in small-scale bioreactors to optimize the Syngas-conversion process and screen modified organisms for potential improvements. If any adjustment seems promising, his team works to engineer the process and equipment to suit a large-scale plant setting. If he didn’t spend his days cooking up fermenters, Fischbein says he would probably have been a chef.