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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/G008442/1
Principal Investigator: Gavriilidis, Professor A
Other Investigators:
McMillan, Professor PF
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Chemical Engineering
Organisation: UCL
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 April 2009 Ends: 31 March 2012 Value (£): 409,750
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Catalysis & Applied Catalysis Reactor Engineering
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
19 Jun 2008 Engineering Science (Flow) Panel Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
In the present proposal we wish to initiate a multidisciplinary study that will enable development of novel systems for green manufacture by catalytic oxidation of chemical intermediates via collaboration between two research teams with strong track records, one in catalyst discovery and the other in microreaction technology. This combination of expertise will provide new technology and catalytic chemistry insights of relevance to the pharmaceutical, fine and bulk chemicals industry that will overcome present problems where stoichiometric oxidants are used due to the non-availability of suitable catalytic technology. Such current processes are non green, produce significant waste and are a source of environmental pollution. We plan to address this aspect and design new, green, solvent-free, catalysed oxidation processes which will utilise molecular oxygen as the oxidant, thereby eliminating the disadvantages and non-greeness of the currently used processes. By combining catalytic chemistry and microreaction engineering, we aim to identify and exploit radically new selective catalytic pathways, which will provide new opportunities in selective oxidation catalysis and environmentally friendly catalytic processes. This will be undertaken using gold and gold alloy catalysts in conjunction with molecular oxygen as the stoichiometric oxidant.Microengineered reactors offer an excellent tool for catalyst development, particularly for fast exothermic catalytic reactions. This is due to the small distances present for mass and heat transfer and improved heat management. These advantages have been demonstrated in a previous EPSRC project for the well-known formaldehyde synthesis on silver. Using the expertise developed and launching a synergistic chemistry/chemical engineering collaboration we now wish to embark on the quest for new highly active and selective catalysts for challenging oxidation reactions using molecular oxygen. This will be accomplished not only by exploiting the enhanced mass and heat transfer attributes of microengineered reactors, but also their newly demonstrated capabilities for in situ studies. In this way, catalyst development will be guided by unique tools and modern technology, as well as deeper understanding of reaction mechanisms.
Key Findings
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Date Materialised
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