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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/S022236/1
Title: EPSRC and SFI Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry: Atoms-2-Products an Integrated Approach to Sustainable Chemistry
Principal Investigator: Licence, Professor P
Other Investigators:
Foster, Professor T Papadopoulos, Professor D Woodward, Professor S
Wildman, Professor R Lam, Professor HW Yakubov, Dr G
Ozcan, Professor E Kays, Professor DL Mosey, Professor S
Lester, Professor E Paradisi, Professor F
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Added Scientific Ltd AstraZeneca BEACON Bioeconomy Research Centre
Britest Limited Bruker CatScI Ltd
Coal Authority Coventive Composites Croda (Group)
Enlumo Ltd European Thermodynamics Ltd eventMAP Ltd
Friedrich-Alexander Univ of Erlangen FAU GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK) IUPAC
James I University (Jaume I) Key Organics Ltd Lubrizol Ltd
McGill University Pontifical Cath Uni of Rio Grande do Sul Promethean Particles Ltd
Quotient Sciences Limited Sygnature Discovery Limited Synthomer Ltd
Thomas Swan UNIDO Unilever
Yale University
Department: Sch of Chemistry
Organisation: University of Nottingham
Scheme: Centre for Doctoral Training
Starts: 01 October 2019 Ends: 31 March 2028 Value (£): 6,511,244
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Catalysis & Applied Catalysis Chemical Synthetic Methodology
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Chemicals Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
07 Nov 2018 EPSRC Centres for Doctoral Training Interview Panel L – November 2018 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Advanced economies are now confronted with a serious challenge that requires us to approach problem solving in a completely different way. As our global population continues to rise we must all consider several quite taxing philosophical questions, most pressingly we must address our addiction to economic growth, our expectation for longer, healthier lives and our insatiable need to collect more stuff! Societies demand for performance molecules, ranging from pharmaceuticals to fragrances or adhesives to lubricants, is growing year-on-year and the advent of competition in a globalised market place is generally forcing the market price downward, cutting margins and reducing the ability for some industry sectors to innovate. Atoms to Products (A2P) is an exciting opportunity to forge a new philosophy that could underpin the next phase of sustainable growth for the chemicals manufacturing industry in the UK and further afield. An overarching driving force in the development of A2P was the desire to apply the knowledge and learning of Green and Sustainable Chemistry to the creative phases embedded in the discovery and development of performance molecules that deliver function in applications as diverse as pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and food.

We propose a multi-disciplinary CDT in sustainable chemistry which aims to achieve a sustainable pipeline of performance molecules from design-to-delivery. A2P will create an Integrated Approach to Sustainable Chemistry, promoting a culture of waste minimisation, emphasising the development of a circular economy in terms of materials and matter replacing current modes of consumption and resource use.

A2P represents a multidisciplinary group of 40 academic advisors spanning 7 academic disciplines, working together with a growing family of industrial partners spanning well-known multinationals including Unilever, GSK, AstraZeneca and Croda, and niche SMEs, including Promethean Particles, Sygnature and European Thermodynamics. Interestingly all partners have expressed a common desire to develop Smarter products using Better chemistry to enable Faster processing and Shorter manufacturing routes.

A2P will drive innovation by:

1 fostering a multidisciplinary, cohort based approach to problem solving;

2 focussing on challenge areas identified by our A2P partners such that sub-groups of our cohort can become immersed in research at the "coal-face";

3 embedding aspects of data-driven decision making in the day-to-day design and execution of high quality research either on paper or indeed in the lab;

4 nurturing a vibrant and supportive community that allows PhD candidates to think 'outside of the box' in a relatively risk- free way;

5 empowering the development of 'next generation' synthetic methods to drive efficiency, selectivity and productivity, underpinned my molecular modelling and the use of machine learning to extract additional value from experimental data;

6 developing sustainable processes that deliver efficiency and transition to scale-up from g to Kg, under-utilised approaches, including electrochemistry, will be investigated increase atom efficiency and reduce reliance on precious metals;

7 enabling efficient scale-up of new processes using flow-chemistry and 3-D printing technology to "print" the most efficient reactor system, thereby maximising throughput whilst efficiently managing mass transport and thermal factors;

8 applying robust reaction/process evaluation metrics such that comparative advantages can be quantified, providing evidence for real process decision making.

Integration of outcomes from all A2P PhD projects, in combination with the expertise of all A2P partners, will deliver a major contribution to the health of the UK chemicals manufacturing industry. A2P will provide mentorship and training to the next generation of leaders securing innovation and future growth for this critical manufacturing sector.
Key Findings
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Organisation Website: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk