Valorization of renewable carbon feedstocks

I work on conversion of small and abundant molecules and plastic waste into valuable products.  The first research line aims at transforming carbon dioxide into fuels and chemicals using electrocatalytic means. In this regard, I work with Phil to develop catalyst design toward long-chain oxygenates and hydrocarbons . Understanding structure-performance relationships and unveiling mechanistic aspects and activity descriptors are our aim to unveil catalyst design guidelines. The second strategy to valorize CO2-containing streams is its thermocatalytic conversion into higher alcohols, for which I am surrounded by a great team formed by YuzhenTangsheng, and Manu. On this topic, we work closely with industrial partners to expedite scaling up and implementation of the work we develop at the laboratory scale in pursuing new catalytic systems.  The third line involves the thermocatalytic transformation at low temperature of the two largest contributors to plastic waste, namely polyethylene and polypropylene, into liquid hydrocarbon products such  as gasoline, diesel, motor oil, etc. We apply state-of-the-art catalyst design and testing concepts to this emerging field to successfully control the cleavage process of the hydrocarbon backbone. I am guiding Shibashish to develop highly effective catalysts and catalyst design principles towards their optimal optimization. Funding for my research comes from ETH Zurich, industrial collaborations, and NCCR Catalysis.

ETH Hönggerberg
HCI E131
Vladimir-Prelog-Weg 1
8093 Zurich
tel: +41 4463 36768