Broadening the application potential of electrochemically mediated photoredox conversions (E-PRC) through flow chemistry

01 November 2022 → 13 March 2025
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Organic chemical synthesis
    • Catalysis
    • Flow chemistry
    • Organic green chemistry
    • Photochemistry
electrophotocatalysis continuous flow chemistry
Project description

In the past decade, photoredox chemistry has developed into a valuable method to produce specialty chemicals. In a typical photoredox process the photocatalyst absorbs energy (a photon) and then initiates a range of reduction and oxidation processes. The associated transfer of electrons between catalyst and substrate leads to the formation of new chemical bonds and desired products. These conversions are however often net reductions or oxidations of the starting molecules, and to proceed they require a 'sacrificial' reagent as electron source or sink. Stoichiometric amounts of these reagents are converted to useless byproducts and thus represent a large amount of waste. The recently emerging field of electrophotocatalysis addresses this problem by providing the electron source/sink by means of an electric potential. While this field is very promising, it is hampered by the absence of a well-designed reactor set-up capable of handling the high demands of the photochemical and electrochemical step. Within this project, concepts developed in the OLED industry and in flow chemistry will be translated to the field of electrophotocatalysis, to improve and expand its applicability. More specifically, the use of a prototype flow reactor, already functional in undivided cell mode, will be further elaborated in divided cell mode. By using this reactor as a powerful tool to improve scalability and process control, we will target valorisation in the late-stage functionalization of APIs.