Recent media appearances – group of Bert Weckhuysen

Lectures at Universiteit van Nederland in the Media

In May 2016, Bert Weckhuysen appeared in a series of five lectures of the ‘Universiteit van Nederland’ (University of the Netherlands), in which he explains all about catalysis: from fuels, food and plastics to air pollution control. The lectures were received with great enthusiasm by the public and are still a popular topic in the media.

In March 2017, Weckhuysen was interviewed by the in the Belgium magazine “MAJA#4” (MAgazine van de Jonge Academie/ Magazine of the young academia). In this interview, he talks about how he experienced the recordings of the lectures of the ‘Universiteit van Nederland’, and his thoughts on how scientists can share their knowledge with the society. Read the full article by Karolien Poels, in MAJA#4 (in Dutch).

On April 21, 2017, the lectures were featured in an article of the Dutch news website Every week, publishes five videos of the best colleges. With ~50.000 views, the lecture “Waarom kun je het onderste puntje van je ijshoorntje beter niet opeten?” (“Why is it better not to eat the bottom-tip of an ice cream?”), is number one of the top 5 videos of the last season. Read the full article on
Most recently, this lecture was also featured in de Marie Claire & Elle.

Article in Onderzoek Nederland

May 5, 2017
In the article entitled “Een wetenschapper biedt opties aan” (“A scientist offers options”), Bert Weckhuysen explains the importance a public-private interactions in order to achieve radical innovation.
Weckhuysen: “Science and technology are still underfinanced in the Netherlands, which makes it essential for companies and academia to work better together”. For a government, it is not interesting to invest money in developing a product that has no significant importance for the society yet, while scientists are eager to create prototypes that currently only “speak to the imagination”. Companies on the other hand, have a clear vision on what they want to achieve or be able to provide in the future. They can provide the financial support that is necessary for researchers to create and bring further their innovative developments.

A collaboration of this scale could lead to more awareness and interest from the government.
“This is important, because a bond between industry, government and science, is essential in realizing such dreams”.

Read more:
The full article “Een wetenschapper biedt opties aan” (in Dutch);
Visit the website of Onderzoek Nederland

Quotation in NRC on the direct conversion of CO2 into gasoline

May 6, 2017
Chemists of the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, have found a method for the direct conversion of CO2 into gasoline.The conversion of CO2 into gasoline was already possible in three separate catalytic reactions, but the Chinese Chemists now have been able to combine the three catalytic properties in one “multifunctional” catalyst. The results were published by Nature Communications on May 2, 2017.
Bert Weckhuysen: “This catalyst is promising. It is a step forwards in the conversion of CO2 into other valuable materials.”

Read more:

Chemistry World: Game of Go explains zeolite clogging

May 9, 2017
Chemistry World dedicated an article on a new model to explain zeolite clogging, based upon the board game “Go”.
The model was built by Scientists from the Tsinghua University in China and published by Catalysis Science and Technology on April 20, 2017.

As a catalysis expert, Bert Weckhuysen remarks: “The developed method is very interesting and elegant. It certainly will be useful for researchers interested in validating their experimental data on catalyst deactivation with a theoretical model. I directly see a lot of potential applications; for example, to model our recently published data on hydrocarbon deposits formed within zeolite crystals.”

Read more:

Our Catalyst research exhibited in “Future Observatory”

May 29, 2017
In the framework of Zero Footprint Campus, twelve artists are conducting artistic research at Utrecht Science Park (USP). Each in their own way, they draw inspiration from the material provided by their direct environment.

Artist Maarten Vanden Eynde created the exhibition “Future Observatory”, located in the Sterrentoren building, located at the center of USP.
The exhibition investigates, clusters, reinterprets and preserves the most influential and world changing inventions and research projects that emerged from Utrecht Science Park. Future Observatory offers a subjective and fictional ‘work in progress’ from a future perspective on what could remain from the present to represent the past in the future.

From our group, several 3-D prints of catalyst models, as well as real-life catalysts, and PhD thesis texts are made available for the exhibition.

Future Observatory can be visited from June 1 until June 24, 2017. Opening times: Monday to Friday: 10 AM to 6 PM

More information: