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Academic Promotions 2014

last modified Dec 04, 2014 05:58 PM

The Head of Department, Professor Daan Frenkel, has great pleasure in announcing this year's Senior Academic and Senior Researcher Promotions.

Senior Academic Promotions

Promoted to Reader: Stephen Jenkins
Promoted to Professor: Jonathan Goodman, Jonathan Nitschke

Senior Researcher Promotions

Promoted to Principal Research Associate: John Skidmore

BP Day 2014

last modified Dec 04, 2014 05:58 PM

The Materials Chemistry Research Interest Group hosted the 2014 BP Day on the 14th of May with 21 excellent talks by final year PhD students and many poster presentations.

We thank BP for supporting this event and Angela Symington, John Redshaw, Matt Wells, Sheetal Handa and Kim Wong for their active participation.

For the lectures, the adjudicators awarded the 1st prize to Matthew Dunstan, with 2nd prizes to Nicholas Paul & Christopher Greaves. The poster prizes went to Raphaelle Clement & Alex Forse.

Catalysis@Cambridge Showcase and Networking Event

last modified Apr 28, 2015 09:47 AM
Catalysis@Cambridge Showcase and Networking Event

Professors Matthew Gaunt and Alexei Lapkin, Directors of Catalysis@Cambridge









On 14 April 2015 Catalysis@Cambridge hosted the first Showcase and Networking Event which brought together a number of Cambridge academics, researchers and around 50 industry representatives, including from GlaxoSmithKline, Shell, Pfizer, Sabic, Aramco, Merck,  and Johnson Matthey. The event was supported by Energy@Cambridge Strategic Research Initiative and funded through the EPSRC Impact Acceleration Account.  Leading academics highlighted recent discoveries and new approaches to catalysis and catalytic reaction engineering in a series of short presentations, and chaired a series of parallel round table discussions exploring challenges in catalysis in several key areas including energy, materials science, biocatalysis, synthesis and continuous processing; which will feed into future industrial consortium projects.


Led by Professor Matthew Gaunt, Department of Chemistry, and Professor Alexei Lapkin, Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, Catalysis@Cambridge, as a virtual centre, incorporates over 30 academics from the Schools of Physical Sciences and Technology and aims to create an international flagship for training and research. It seeks to provide a transformative approach to catalysis and synthesis research by harnessing the world-leading expertise from across the University of Cambridge to develop and apply new pioneering catalysis concepts that will have a future impact on health, energy, the environment and new materials.


The showcase event ended with a drinks reception and poster session where around 30 PhD students and post-doctoral researchers working in various departments across the University and collaborative partners from the National University of Singapore networked with the industry participants.


“Today’s event underlines the importance of catalysis research in both academia and industry and we hope our centre can provide a platform for exciting new collaborations.”- Professor Matthew Gaunt and Professor Alexei Lapkin


Catalysis@Cambridge will provide future opportunities for collaborative activity and training, workshops with industry, engagement opportunities for students and entrepreneurship experience. Enquiries about the Catalysis@Cambridge centre should be directed to:

Discovery of one of the secrets of Li ion batteries

last modified Dec 04, 2014 05:58 PM

Hao Liu, Fiona Strobridge and Prof Clare Grey, and coworkers from Argonne National Laboratory have used in situ synchrotron X-ray diffraction methods to investigate how Li ion battery electrode materials function at fast charge and discharge rates.

In work published recently in the journal Science, they showed that nanoparticles of LiFePO4 transform at via a non-equilibrium solid-solution process, rather than via an abrupt structural transformation (a two-phase reaction) of LiFePO4 to form FePO4.

This mechanism results in more gradual structural rearrangements during cycling and allows lithiation and delithiation to occur throughout the whole nanoparticle, rather than at an interface between LiFePO4 and FePO4, both contributing to the high-rate performance of this material. This finding highlights the importance of non-equilibrium process during battery cycling and suggests alternative strategies for designing electrodes that can be charged and discharged more rapidly for use in portable electronics, electric vehicles and for storage on the grid.

Academic Promotions

last modified Dec 04, 2014 05:58 PM
Dr David Spring of Chemistry promoted to Professor
Academic Promotions

Dr David Spring

Catalysis@Cambridge is pleased to announce that Dr David Spring of the Chemistry Department has been promoted to Professor. Congratulations Prof. Spring!

Visit to Christian Doppler Laboratory

last modified Dec 04, 2014 05:58 PM

Picture credit to OMV Group (photographer Kurt Prinz)

A group of representatives from Politics, Industry and Press visited the Christian Doppler Laboratory on 20 March 2014.

The Austrian delegation included the CEO of OMV Group (Dr Gerhard Roiss), the Austrian Federal Minister of Science, Research and Economy (Dr Reinhold Mitterlehner) and Editor-in-Chief of Austria’s largest newspaper Kronen Zeitung (Dr Christoph Dichand).

Picture from left to right: Top: Walter Böhme (OMV), Christoph Dichand (Kronen Zeitung), Mark Perry (Kronen Zeitung), Gerhard Roiss (OMV), Georg Weiland (Kronen Zeitung), Reinhold Mitterlehner (Ministry of Science, Research & Economy), Erwin Reisner. Bottom: Hyun Park (postdoc), Janina Willkomm (PhD student), Christine Caputo (postdoc), Yi-Hsuan Lai (PhD student), Manuela Gross (PhD student), Mortiz Kuehnel (postdoc).