Research

ERC Consolidator Grant awarded to Sascha Ott

2016-09-01

Sascha Ott, Professor of Synthetic Molecular Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry, has been awarded EUR 2 million in a Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council. The grant runs for five years.

‘It feels incredible to get a grant like this,’ says Sascha. ‘The project is very multidisciplinary, and we now have the opportunity to recruit the essential skills we need to kick-start the project.’

The project, ‘Fundamental and Applied Science on Molecular Redox-Catalysts of Energy Relevance in Metal-Organic Frameworks’, explores a new way to produce more sustainable and efficient catalysts for use in electrochemical hydrogen gas production and artificial photosynthesis.

Over the past ten years, huge efforts have been made in both industry and academia to develop such catalysts. Two fundamentally different approaches have been applied: one has focused on homogeneous catalysis, such as a molecular system that works in solution, while the other has focused on heterogeneous catalysis by using solid phase materials, often at high temperatures and pressures.

The project will combine these two solutions by incorporating molecular catalysts in a solid-phase matrix. To succeed in these efforts, the research team is working with metal-organic frameworks, MOFs.

‘We will systematically address key issues regarding the influence of the MOF matrix on the incorporated molecular catalysts. The research will provide new catalyst concepts and bring MOF chemistry closer to practical application,’ says Sascha Ott.