Catalytic Conversion of CO2 to Chemicals

01 October 2019 → Ongoing
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
No data available
CO2 Chemistry Renewable Chemistry Catalysis
Project description

The discovery of efficient technologies enabling the use of CO2 as a starting material for chemical synthesis is one of the most significant challenges of our time. They could serve the dual purpose of reducing CO2 emissions and producing value-added chemicals, thus helping the environment mitigating the effects of climate change while creating new opportunities for the chemical industry. Our research focuses on the synthesis of Acrylic Acid and Acrylates from CO2. These compounds are the precursor of superabsorbent polymers required for the production of diapers and feminine hygiene care products with a global year market of approximately 5 million metric tons, and an estimated worth between 7-10 billion euros. Accessing acrylic acid and acrylates directly from CO2 could represent a breakthrough for the synthesis of renewable polymers worldwide. This research is in line with the 2050 Research Priorities of the European Union for CO2 capture and utilisation and the efficient use of raw materials as well as with the Flemish Priorities in Science, Technology and Innovation towards 2025. We aim at exploring the interface between homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis, merging expertise in the Laboratory for Chemical Technology (Prof. Saeys) in the design of heterogeneous catalysts, with the background in experimental organometallic chemistry and ligand design from Dr Urbina-Blanco.