Brad Berron

Brad Berron

Brad Berron

Brad Berron

Research Director

James B. Beam Institute for KY Spirits 1320 Nicholasville Road Lexington, KY 40503

Last Revised: Feb 2nd, 2024

Professional Biography

Dr. Berron coordinates the research activities within UK's James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits. He is an associate professor of chemical engineering, and he collaborates across campus on several teams in the analysis of distillery processes. His current projects include EC remediation, chill/nonchill filtration, in line proofing, grain flows, and stillage processing. In addition, Dr. Berron enjoys teaching courses on distillery operations, chemical separations technology, and the analysis of chemical, heat, and momentum transfer.


B.S. Chemical Engineering, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, Vanderbilt University

Course Instruction

CME 480: Bourbon Production Engineering for Chemical Engineers (3)
Course Description: Bourbon is a key driver for Kentucky’s economy, where the industry contributes to over eight billion dollars and over 17,000 jobs in the state. This course challenges Chemical Engineering students to apply the fundamentals of their discipline to the science and engineering aspects that control the production of bourbon in a distillery setting. In the first half of the course, students will receive an overview of the bourbon production process, with an emphasis on the connection between chemical engineering and the bourbon industry. Throughout this overview, there will be a focus on the economics of bourbon production, with students learning to estimate capital and operating costs associated with each stage of the production process. The second half of the course will focus on a team-based design project, with preliminary research requiring students to visit several local distilleries. Students will then design a new bourbon production facility and estimate all processing parameters, including distillation column design, feedstock/product specifications, and product portfolio. These parameters will be used to estimate 5 and 10 year return on investment for a portfolio of bourbon products. Design updates will be presented to EGR 599 students and the final design will be summarized in a written report.

Contact Information

Seth DeBolt, Ph.D.

309 Plant Science Building Lexington, KY 40546-0312