A Fundamental Approach to Efficient Catalyst Design for Sustainable Chemicals (CatCH)

01 October 2018 → 30 September 2021
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Organic chemistry
catalyst chemicals
Project description

Catalysts are at the heart of more than 80% of the industrial processes that transform raw materials into the sophisticated products that we use in our everyday lives. Therefore, catalysts have a major role to play in the transition from a fossil resources based to a more sustainable, even circular, society. More particularly, improving existing catalysts to produce the same amount
of product with lower energy demands or lower amounts of raw material, or creating catalysts that can produce high-quality products with alternative (e.g. bio-sourced) raw materials will bring this goal within reach. Given the sense of urgency in this respect, a rapid and timely development
of the corresponding catalysts is required. In spite of the intensive research during the last few decades, most of the catalysts are still not efficient enough. A true revolution in the research paradigm for catalyst development is required and CatCh will tackle this challenge. Our idea is to make use of all the experience that has been accumulated by scientists all over the wold in the
form of data. By developing a software, based on the principles of catalysis, to automatically process all this data, we will be able to construct a mathematical model that will describe the effect of catalyst properties on the desired reaction. By a reverse analysis, this model will guide us
into the catalyst properties required to obtain the product of interest with lowest energy requirements and minimum side products.