Congratulations to Dr. Fromentin

Since last week we have another doctor in the consortium! On April 14 2023, Chloé Fromentin defended her thesis, titled “Reaction mechanism for CO2-N2 low-temperature plasmas: the role played by O2 and N2 on the CO2 vibrational kinetics and dissociation”, and obtained her PhD degree from IST of University of Lisbon with distinction. Congratulations Dr. Fromentin!

First Patent of the Pioneer Project

When it comes to dissemination, the first thing that comes to mind in a project like Pioneer is probably publishing in academic journals or contributions to conferences. However, at the front of an innovative topic like plasma catalysis, patents are also very interesting. Recently, Minh Nguyen Quang and co-workers filed patent FR2210833 in France. This is the first patent of the Pioneer project. Congratulations!

Congratulations to Dr. Hasrack!

While the end of the PIONEER project might cause mixed feelings, it also means that one after another the ESRs obtain their PhD degrees – without a doubt a very important moment in their lives. Already last December, Golshid Hasrack obtained her PhD from Sorbonne University and IST of University of Lisbon. She defended her thesis, titled “Tailoring selectivity with different plasma sources for CO2 hydrogenation” on December 7 2022. Congratulations Dr. Hasrack!

International Symposium Plasma Catalysis for CO2 Recycling

From September 13 to 15 the Pioneer project reached one of the final mile stones: The organization of our own scientific conference! During the International Symposium Plasma Catalysis for CO2 Recycling at AGH university in Krakow, Poland not only all ESRs shared their work but also plenty of colleagues and friends from the CO2 plasma catalysis community. The fact that our field is not only fascinating but also represents an enormous economic potential was underlined by various participants from industry, in particular innovative start-ups.

The conference was followed by the last official Pioneer meeting. The project is coming to an end and we used this opportunity to recall the past, identify current opportunities and look ahead at a time after Pioneer with continued collaboration. Maybe even a Pioneer 2.0? Stay tuned!

Lisbon School and Project Meeting 2022

From July 11 to 15 the consortium assembled in the sunny capital of Portugal for another inspiring meeting. The first two days gave the ESRs a thorough introduction to chemical reactor modelling. Also training sessions in CV writing and job interviews were part of the schedule. With the end of the project in sight the latter becomes more and more important of course.

The last two days also the supervisors and the advisors of the project joined for engaged discussion on open scientific questions as well as to tell about their career paths and experiences.

And on Wednesday? Well, in some outdoor team building activity we have shown that we do not only look at the future but also at the past by following the fossilized footsteps of dinosaurs!

Call for Contributions to Catalysts Special Issue

In the course of the INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM PLASMA CATALYSIS FOR CO2 RECYCLING there will be a special issue of the journal Catalysts. Please refer to the following message from the guest editors, including many supervisors of Pioneer, for more information.

Dear Colleagues,

Energy transition and the use of alternative fuels, such as green hydrogen and green methane, is an important challenge nowadays. These issues are directly linked to the problem of global CO2 emissions. Recent European policy trends have focused on the possibility of utilizing carbon dioxide in chemical processes. The available installations that use CO2  produced as a waste gas are already being demonstrated. Nowadays, the most important challenge is to expand these installations up to larger scales to find economic and sustainable solutions.

One of these possible solutions is chemical reactions in which carbon dioxide can be used as a feedstock, such as methanation, methanolation, CO2 to chemicals, or the reforming of methane using CO2 (DRM). However, most of these processes are catalytic, meaning that they take place at high temperatures or pressures. Thus, the use of non-thermal plasmas in such processes can lead to a reduction in the energy used, making the process easier to carry out. Such reactions can be used for so-called energy storage.

Plasma–catalytic-assisted processes are very complex, both at the level of gas phase (or liquid phase) interactions and at the level of solid–gas phase (liquid phase) interactions. Key to these interactions are the activation processes of CO2 molecules, as well as the reaction centers of the catalyst, which in a traditional reaction are created under high temperatures.

In the pioneering Special Issue, all of these aspects related to the fields of physics, material science, catalysis, chemistry and the chemical engineering of plasma–catalytic processes will be presented.

Prof. Dr. Patrick Da Costa
Prof. Dr. Annemie Bogaerts
Dr. Vasco Guerra
Prof. Dr. Monika Motak
Dr. Bogdan Samojeden
Guest Editors

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