Surface nanobubbles are nanoscopic gaseous objects, which are formed mainly on hydrophobic surfaces. Although many catalytic processes taken place at the solid-liquid-gas interface, the implications of surface nanobubbles in the field of heterogeneous catalysis are totally not explored. A prominent example where surface nanobubbles may play a role is the catalytic hydrogenation of biomass-derived chemicals. In this project, we will develop a high-temperature, high-pressure Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)-Vibrational Spectroscopy set-up to investigate the one pot hydrogenation reaction of levulinic acid into pentanoic acid over Ru/H-ZSM-5. To enable a detailed AFM investigation large coffin-shaped ZSM-5 crystals will be investigated and the presence and properties of the surface nanobubbles will be studied as a function of the surface roughness and Si/Al ratio (i.e., changing surface hydrophilicity). The latter will be realized by applying different post-treatments, while altering the hydrogenation conditions may affect the stability of the formed surface nanobubbles.
PhD candidate under supervision of prof.dr.ir. Bert Weckhuysen at the faculty of Inorganic Chemistry and Catalysis, Utrecht University. Focus of research: “Can We Observe Surface Nanobubbles during Biomass Catalysis on Zeolite Surfaces?: An Operando AFM-Vibrational Spectroscopy Study”
2014 – 2016:
Master’s degree in “Nanomaterials: Chemistry & Physics”., Utrecht University, Netherlands.
Thesis entitled: “The Methanol-to-Olefins Reactions: the Influence of Water Studied by in situ Spectroscopy”.
Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry, Utrecht University, Netherlands.
Thesis entitled: “Shape Selectivity in zeolites: Accessibility of zeolite pores by fluorescent organic probes”
Born in de Bilt, Netherlands (9th of October)
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