EPSRC logo

Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/L016419/1
Title: EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Critical Resource Catalysis - CRITICAT
Principal Investigator: Smith, Professor AD
Other Investigators:
Love, Professor JB Maroto-Valer, Professor M Macgregor, Professor SA
Westwood, Professor NJ Nolan, Professor SP
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Bayer AG Diamond Light Source Dr Reddy's Laboratories UK Ltd
DSM Innovative Synthesis B. V. Eastman Chemical Ltd (inc) Eindhoven University of Technology
Hybrid Catalysis BV INEOS Technologies Ltd King Abdullah University of Sci and Tech
Leibniz Institute for Catalysis Marks and Clerk LLP Netherlands Institute for Catalysis Rese
Royal Netherlands Academy Arts Sci KNAW RWTH Aachen University SABIC (Saudi Basic Industries Corp)
Sasol Technology Technical University of Munich The James Hutton Institute
University of Helsinki University of Leipzig University of Leuven
University of Virginia University of Washington
Department: Chemistry
Organisation: University of St Andrews
Scheme: Centre for Doctoral Training
Starts: 01 May 2014 Ends: 25 March 2024 Value (£): 4,437,577
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Catalysis & Applied Catalysis
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
23 Oct 2013 EPSRC CDT 2013 Interviews Panel N Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
The future sustainable production of bulk and fine chemicals is an ever-increasing global challenge that requires a transformative scientific approach. We must develop new ways of efficiently exploiting valuable fossil-fuel resources and tools to exploit renewable resources such as CO2 and lignin. Catalytic methods, the heart of this CDT, are key to these transformations, offering the single most powerful and broadly applied technology for the reduction of energy demand, cost, environmental impact and toxicity. This CDT will drive forward a sustainable and resource-rich culture.

This CDT in Critical Resource Catalysis (CRITICAT) combines the catalysis research collective of St. Andrews, Edinburgh, and Heriot-Watt Universities to create a new and unique opportunity in PhD training and research. CRITICAT will allow 80+ bright minds to be challenged in a comprehensive and state-of-the-art PhD training regime in the broad remit of catalytic science, transforming them into future scientific researchers, business leaders, entrepreneurs, and policy makers. These will be people who make a difference in a technologically-led society.

Our critical mass in critical resource catalysis will accelerate training, discovery, understanding, and exploitation within catalytic chemistry. We will focus our efforts on the future of catalysis, driving new advances for environmentally sustainable economic growth and underpinning current growth in the UK chemicals sector. The economic impact in this area is huge: in 2010, an EPSRC/RSC jointly commissioned independent report showed that the UK's "upstream" chemicals industry and "downstream" chemistry-using sector contributed a combined total of £258 billion in added value to the economy in 2007, equivalent to 21% of UK GDP, and supported over 6 million UK jobs. Sustained investment in PhD training within this area will provide the highest quality employees for this sector.

The CRITICAT PhD students will be exposed to a unique training and research environment. Extensive taught courses (delivered by CRITICAT PIs and industrial collaborators) will offer fundamental insight into homogeneous, heterogeneous, industrial and biocatalysis coupled with engineering concepts and essential techniques to showcase cutting-edge catalysis. The CRITICAT partners will develop these core courses into a foundational textbook for graduate training across catalysis using critical resources as its cornerstone that will serve as a legacy for this programme. We will expand our pedagogical innovation to all PhD graduate students at our three partner universities, providing region-wide enhanced academic provision. Continuous growth and peer-to-peer learning throughout their research efforts will create graduates who are keen to continue learning. They will be equipped with business, management, entrepreneurial and communication skills synergistic with core science knowledge and research undertakings. In this way, we will ensure that our CRITICAT students will be able to innovate, think critically, and adapt to change in any technological career. We will prepare the next generation of scientists, managers and innovators for key roles in our future society.

To support this broad developmental approach, industry and business leaders will contribute widely to CRITICAT. Industries will (i) provide scientific ideas and objectives, (ii) deliver new competencies through targeted courses ranging from entrepreneurship to intellectual property rights and (iii) provide laboratory placements to consolidate learning and exploit any scientific advances. Furthermore, our extensive collaboration with leading international academic institutions will engender PhD student mobility, expand impact and allow experiential learning. We will build on our existing public engagement frameworks to enable our students to deliver their research, impact and scientific understanding to a wide audience, exciting others and driving new scientific policy.
Key Findings
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Potential use in non-academic contexts
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Description This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Date Materialised
Sectors submitted by the Researcher
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.st-and.ac.uk