Archive for the ‘Conferences’ Category

FineCat 2016: Towards a unified approach to catalysis

This article was written by Mario Pagliaro

Palermo Bay

Palermo Bay

Inaugurated by a welcome address of Professor Giulio Deganello, founder in the early 1990s of Palermo’s chemistry Institute of Italy’s CNR, the 5th edition of the “FineCat Symposium on heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals” was held in Palermo on April 6-7 in the splendid Sala delle Capriate of the Steri Palace, featuring the invited lectures of Valentine Ananikov and Bert Sels.

The presence of delegates from Norway, Russia, Belgium, Switzerland, UK and Italy testified once again to the international nature of this yearly Symposium series inaugurated in 2012 following the Catalysis Science & Technology themed issue1 on the same topic.

Professor Valentine P. Ananikov, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, discussed heterogeneous catalysis in the eyes of an organic chemist. His lecture started from insight of Russia’s chemist Balandin who in his last article2 published in 1969 was calling for a single theory of catalysis, capable to anticipate catalytic effects.

With the advent of today’s sophisticated and powerful analytical techniques as well as in light of recent progress in chemical theory, such approach merging molecular, metal, bio, and photo homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis is eventually becoming a reality.

Professor Valentine P. Ananikov, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow

Professor Valentine P. Ananikov, Russian Academy of Sciences, speaking at FineCat 2016

Recent work from Ananikov’s Group, for example, has shown that homogeneous metal-catalysed reactions are in fact due to “cocktail-like” systems,3 namely to participation of different metal species in the catalytic transformation; whereas heterogeneous catalysis often involves formation of a number of active species that possess dynamic properties and interconversions on the surface.4

In his lecture, academician Ananikov also discussed strategies to reducing the cost of metal catalysts, devising leach-proof synthetic strategies and using easily available metals such as nickel,5 the “spirited horse” identified by Sabatier in his seminal 1922 book on catalysis and organic chemistry.6

Professor Bert Sels, Director of the Center for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium, discussed how Sn tetrahedrally incorporated into porous silica frameworks such as zeolites and structured mesoporous silica can be successfully used as heterogeneous Lewis acid catalysts.7

A remarkable example is the conversion of carbohydrates into platform and commodity chemicals such as lactic acid or alkyl lactates, building blocks of PLA, where the activity and selectivity of Sn-based materials largely surpasses those of homogeneous Sn catalysts.8 Some of the materials developed by his Group show water-tolerant behaviour and can therefore be used in aqueous conditions.

Professor Bert Sels, Director of the Center for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven

Professor Bert Sels, Director of the Center for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, speaking at FineCat 2016

Another discovery of great practical relevance in the context of the emerging biorefinery, is the simple method to convert wood in one pot and directly into carbohydrate-rich pulp and lignin oil rich in valued phenolics via hydrogenolysis of lignocellulose in methanol over a simple Ru/C catalyst.9 Biomass conversion, he concluded, is an exciting research area with a vast unexplored terrain. New catalysts and new synthetic routes are awaiting to be designed, guided by fundamental knowledge with regard to active sites and insight in the reaction mechanisms.

Jan Schütz, DSM Nutritional Products, Basel, showed how basic ion exchange resins containing quaternary ammonium groups are used at one of the world’s leading fine chemicals company to mediate aldol condensation reactions of various aldehydes and ketones. One example of manufactured  products is timberone, which has a woody, amberlike odor and is valued in the fragrance industry for manufacturing perfumes and cosmetics, obtained from citral and 2-pentanone.10 The anionic resins are ideally used in continuous reaction mode thus likely anticipating similar progress in the fine chemicals industry with solid-supported metal complexes and metal nanoparticles.

Professor Cristina Della Pina, Department of Chemistry, University of Milan, discussed the novel use of nanoferrites as catalysts (and fillers) for polyaniline (PANI) composites preparation. Her team recently reported a new method to produce electrical and magnetic polyaniline/ferrite nanocomposites, whereby the magnetic nanoparticles played the dual role of catalyst and magnetic filler.

Piera Demma Carà, post-doc research assistant at the MicroBioRefinery of the University of Liverpool, presented the one-pot conversion of cellobiose, a model compound for polysaccharides, into sugar alcohols over ruthenium-based bifunctional catalysts. Ru nanoparticles impregnated on Amberlyst 15 are very active and selective towards sorbitol under 40 bar hydrogen in water, affording in 5 h a >80% yield of sorbitol, much higher than the 53% yield obtained using a mixture of the solid acid A15 and Ru/C.

Regaleali villa

Regaleali villa

Ludivine van den Biggelar, PhD student at the Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium, discussed the successful use of silica-supported transaminases in continuous flow to catalyse asymmetric reductive aminations and prepare valued chiral amines; whereas Chiara Pezzotta, a PhD candidate at the same University, presented interesting results concerning different rejuvenation strategies of titania-entrapped heteropolyacid solid catalysts for Friedel-Crafts alkylations.

Dr Francesco Parrino, a post-doc in the “Schiavello-Grillone” research Group of Palermo’s University, highlighted new results obtained in co-operation with Italy’s CNR concerning the one-pot synthesis of vanillic acid from ferulic acid in water. Professor Giuseppe Marcì, from the same Group, discussed the role of the support in the photocatalytic activity of heterogenized Keggin heteropolyacid PW12 in the dehydration of 2-propanol.

Mangesh Ramesh Avhad, PhD student at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, presented the results of glycerol-activated CaO catalysis for biodiesel syntheis from crude Jatropha Curcas oil, in the context of work on second generation biofuels from non edible biomass resources.

The Symposium received excellent press coverage and ended on the evening of April 7 with a social dinner at the Tasca d’Almerita estate. FineCat 6th edition will be held in Sicily on April 5-6, 2017 (http://goo.gl/DXBd8t).

References
1. M. Pagliaro, G. Hutchings, Catal. Sci. Technol. 2011, 1, 1543.
2. A. A. Balandin, Adv. Catal. 1969, 9, 1-210.
3. A. S. Kashin, V. P. Ananikov, J. Org. Chem. 2013, 78, 11117-11125.
4. V. P. Ananikov, et al. Chem. Sci. 2015, 6, 3302-3313.
5. V. P. Ananikov, ACS Catal. 2015, 5, 1964-1971.
6. P. Sabatier, Catalysis in Organic Chemistry, Van Nostrand, New York: 1922.
7. B. F. Sels, et al. ACS Catal. 2015, 5, 928-940.
8. B. F. Sels, et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 10089-10101.
9. B. F. Sels, et al. Energy Environ. Sci. 2015, 8, 1748-1763.
10. J. Schütz, W. Bonrath, Catal. Sci. Technol. 2012, 2, 2037-2038.

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2nd UK Catalysis Conference 6th – 8th January 2016

The second UK Catalysis Conference will take place at Holywell Park, Loughborough over 6th – 8th January 2016.  Abstract submission is now open and the deadline is 14th September 2015.  The template can be downloaded from the website and submitted here.

The conference will cover the following areas;

  • Organo/Biocatalysis – Integration of Bio- and Chemo-/Hetero- Catalysis, Cascade Processes & Engineering Biocatalysts for Sustainable Chemical Production.
  • RSC Surface Reactivity & Catalysis Group/Applied Catalysis Group Environmental, Fine Chemicals, Petrochemicals, Green synthesis, In-situ & Operando Methods.
  • IChemE Catalysis Specialist Interest Group – Kinetics, Modelling, Reaction Engineering, Combined Reaction and Separation & Intensified Processes.
  • RSC Dalton Division – All aspects of Homogeneous Catalysis will be considered, especially those concerned with New Reactions,  New Reactor Concepts, Bio-derived Feed-Stocks, Asymmetric Synthesis, Tandem & Cascade Reactions.

Confirmed Plenary Speakers include;

  • Prof. John Blacker (University of Leeds)   “Why Does Industry Struggle to Adopt Academics’ Catalysts?”
  • Prof. Enrico Tronconi (LCCP Milano, Italy) “Recent Advances in Fundamental Understanding of Automotive NH3-SCR Reactions”
  • Dr. King Kuok (Mimi) Hii (Imperial College London) “Catalysis in Flow”
  • Prof. Bert Sels (KU Leuven, Belgium)

The meeting will provide an opportunity for Catalytic scientists and Engineers from across the UK’s academic and industrial communities to interact and network over the whole spectrum of Catalysis ranging from Organocatalysis, Biocatalysis, Homogenous catalysis and Heterogeneous catalysis.  More information about the conference can be found here.

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15th National Youth Catalysis Conference – China

Catalysis Science & Technology is proud to announce that it awarded poster prizes at the 15th National Youth Catalysis Conference, “Multidisciplinary and multi-scale catalytic science and technology”, in China. The conference was held on 19th July 2015, at the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), in Hefei. Plenary lectures were given by Professor Qingbai Xu (Tsinghua University), Professor Ye Wang (Xiamen University), Professor Wenjie Shen (Dalian Insitute of Chemical Physics, CAS), Professor Jiaguo Yu (Wuhan University of Technology) and Professor Baoning Zong (SINOPEC research institute of petroleum processing). Professors Wang, Shen and Yu are pictured below (left-right), together with the prize winners, Professor Weixin Huang (USTC, the local Chair) and Catalysis Science & Technology Associate Editor, Professor Ding Ma (Peking University).

The Winners:

Di Xin (Dalian University of Technolgy)

Ding Liangbing (University of Science and Technology of China)

Song Xiaojing   (Jilin University)

Han Lupeng (East China Normal University)

Su Xiaojuan (Ningxia University)

Chen Lang (Hunan University)

Su Diefeng (Zhejing University)

Wei Mingming (Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, CAS)

Wang Dandan   (Xiamen University)

Gu Jing (Nanjing University)

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International Symposium on Relations between Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Catalysis -ISHHC17

The 17th International Symposium on Relations between Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Catalysis (ISHHC17) was held at Utrecht University between 12th-15th July, 2015. The opening ceremony took place in the Dom church in the city centre, with plenary lectures given by Professor Robert Schlögl (Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, Germany) and Professor Jan van Hest (Radboud University, the Netherlands).

Catalysis Science & Technology and PCCP were proud to sponsor two poster prizes during the event. These were awarded to Amanda E. Anderson (Christopher J. Baddeley and Paul A. Wright) of EaStCHEM School of Chemistry, University of St. Andrews (UK) for her poster, ‘Immobilization of Nanoparticles in Metal Organic Frameworks for Tandem Catalysis’; and to Pim Huat Phua (Boon Ying Tay, Cun Wang, Ludger Paul Stubbs) of Institute of Chemical and Engineering Science (A*STAR) (Singapore), for his poster, ‘Hydrogenation of Levulinic acid to γ-valerolactone: Homogeneous vs Heterogeneous Catalysis’.

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“FineCat Symposium on heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals” – FineCat 2015

The 4th FineCat Symposium was held at the palazzo Steri on 8th-9th April 2015 with lectures given by Irina Beletskaya, Manfred Reetz and Oliver Kappe.

In partnership with Catalysis Science and Technology, three poster prizes were awarded. The first prize went to Francesco Parrino, a post-doc research fellow at the “Schiavello-Grillone” research Group of the University of Palermo, for his poster concerning the catalytic photoisomerization of trans-caffeic acid to cis-caffeic acid.

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Sustainable Catalytic Conversions of Renewable Substrates – SuBiCat II symposium

On 2nd March 2015, Catalysis Science and Technology Associate Editor, Professor Paul Kamer, hosted the SuBiCat II symposium at the University of St. Andrews. SuBiCat is an international training network that aims to provide expertise and drive changes that will allow chemicals to be produced with minimal chemical waste in all-catalytic, low energy, multi-step production methods exclusively from renewable resources.

Catalysis Science and Technology was pleased to sponsor this excellent event which was well attended by the catalysis community, including a number of members of the board. Editor-in-Chief, Professor Piet van Leeuwen, gave the opening talk on “Ligand effects in nanoparticle catalysis”, this was followed by contributions from Associate Editors Professor Ding Ma and Professor Javier Perez-Ramirez and Editorial Board members David Jackson and Christian Bruneau.

Pictured: Professor Paul Kamer opening the symposium, Professor Christian Bruneau and Professor Piet van Leeuwen.

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Catalysis Science and Technology – One Day Symposium

Catalysis Science and Technology is delighted to announce that the journal is organising a one day Symposium on the subject of Sustainable Catalytic Conversions of Renewable Substrates (SuBiCat II) on 2nd March 2015, at St Andrews, UK.

The symposium is free of charge, but you are requested to register before 15th February 2015 at http://www.subicat.org/events/index.php.

There is an excellent list of speakers already confirmed, including:

  • Prof. Piet van Leeuwen , ICIQ, Tarrgona, Spain
  • Dr Pieter Bruijnincx, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands
  • Prof. Ding Ma Peking University, China
  • Prof. Carsten Bolm, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
  • Prof. David Jackson, University of Glasgow, Scotland, UK
  • Dr Kristiina Hilden, University of Helsinki, Finland
  • Prof. Christian Bruneau, University of Rennes, France
  • Prof. John Irvine, University of St Andrews, Scotland, UK
  • Prof. Dr. Pérez-Ramírez, Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering, Zurich, Switzerland

Visit the website for further information and to register now.

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FineCat 2015 – Symposium on heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals

The 4th FineCat Symposium will be taking place from 8th–9th April 2015 in Palermo, Palazzo Steri.  The event is jointly organised by the Institute of Nanostructured Materials of Italy’s Research Council (CNR) and by Palermo’s University DEIM Department and aims to provide an opportunity for contact between academic and industrial researchers, manufacturers and users of solid catalysts for the efficient and selective production of fine chemicals.

Confirmed plenary speakers include:

  • Manfred Reetz, External emeritus group leader of the Mülheim Max-Planck-Institute, Hans-Meerwein-Research-Professor, Marburg University, Germany
  • Pedro J. Maireles Torres, Department of Inorganic Chemistry, University of Malaga, Spain
  • Oliver Kappe, Institute of Chemistry, University of Graz, Austria
  • Rodrigo de Souza, Institute of Chemistry, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The deadline for abstracts in 31st December 2014. For further information and to register, visit the website now!

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Congratulations to the poster prize winners at NSC2014

Congratulations to the poster prize winners at NSC2014 (16th Nordic Symposium on Catalysis). Green Chemistry and Catalysis Science & Technology were pleased to sponsor a poster prize each at the symposium, which were awarded as follows:

Green Chemistry poster prize
awarded to Aron Dombovari, University of Oulu
for “Photocatalytic processing of algae

Catalysis Science & Technology poster prize
awarded to Jacob O. Abildstrøm, Technical University of Denmark
for “Investigation of Mesoporous TS-1 for the Catalytic Formation of N-oxides

The prize winners received a certificate and a book from Royal Society of Chemistry Books.

You can read more about the Poster Award and find out about the Nordic Symposium on the UiO website.

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FineCat 2014: Great Catalysis Science and Art

http://www.qualitas1998.net/ismn/locandina_finecat_2014.pngThe third FineCat – Symposium on heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals was held in Palermo, Italy, on April 2-3, 2014 in the splendid venue of the Steri Palace. The Symposium ended late in the evening of April 3rd with a spectacular social dinner at the Tasca d’Almerita estate, following the guided tour of the 1,000 years old Steri Palace the day before.

The scientific program featured 12 symposia and 11 poster presentations that highlighted practically relevant chemical innovation in fields as diverse as flow catalysis, catalysis with metal “Lego” nanoparticles, photocatalysis and biomass catalytic valorization. Fine chemicals — polyfunctional molecules with specific properties imparting them high added value — have traditionally been synthesized via selective homogeneous synthetic methods. All this is now changing as newly developed heterogeneous catalysis emerges as a convenient industrial tool capable to make the fine chemicals industry not only environmentally, but also economically, more sustainable. Delegates from Slovenia, Thailand, Canada, UK, Italy and Germany showed once again the truly international nature of this Symposium series inaugurated in 2012.

A Catalysis Science & Technology post prize was awarded to Maria Luisa Testa for her poster concerning he use of acid hybrid silicas in esterification reactions, awarding one year’s personal e-subscription to Catalysis Science & Technology. The Prize was offered by RSC Publishing, partnering with the organizers since the very first FineCat symposium.

Read more about the conference here.

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