Extreme high-resolution microscope coming to Utrecht

Dr. Marijn van Huis

Utrecht University is getting a new transmission electron microscope, which will be one of the most comprehensive electron microscopes for materials studies in the Netherlands, and one of the best in the world. Researchers will be able to use the microscope to study materials, nanoparticles, and 2D materials such as graphene with a resolution of a single atom. MCEC researcher Marijn van Huis explains more about this new addition on the website of Utrecht University: “With the new microscope, we can not only look at atoms, but also at the electrons surrounding them. That way, we can also see if the atoms carry an electric charge, and whether they are in an excited state. That’s important for the study of catalysts, for example, in which the atom’s charge determines whether it is catalytically active. With this technology, we can see where the catalytically active atoms are located in the material, and we can study how to activate them.”

Read more in English or in Dutch.



19 June 2019



Programme MCEC Annual Meeting 2019

June 19 & 20
University of Twente

June 19

10.30 Registration and welcome coffee
11.00 Opening by prof. Bert Weckhuysen
11.15 4 x 20 minute PhD/PD presentations:

  • José Escobar Encarnacion (UT): Marangoni puffs
  • Anne-Eva Nieuwelink (UU): Catalyst Particles and Microfluidics: Reaction, Separation and Analysis 
  • Michel van Etten (TU/e): The optimal particle size for cobalt-based Fischer-Tropsch synthesis
  • Ajoy Kandar (UU): Collective behavior of light switchable active matchstick colloids

12.35 Lunch

13.30 Invited Lecture by Dr. Yali Tang (TU/e):
Application of DNS in Fluidization and Fluid Particle Systems Research

14.15 Short break
14.25 3 x 20 minute PhD/PD presentations

  • Pablo Peñas (UT): Ultrasound-enhanced mass transfer during single bubble diffusive growth
  • Alejo Aguirre (TU/e): Open-cell foams as catalysts support for the Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis
  • Laurens Mandemaker (UU): Metal-Organic Framework Thin-Films

15.25 Short break
15.35 Presentation MCEC Demonstrator by Dr. Mathieu Odijk (UT)
16.00 PhD/PD poster session 1
17.00 End of poster session 1
18.00 BBQ
20.00 Sport activities

June 20

08.30 Opening by Prof. Hans Kuipers
08.45 2 x 20 minute PhD presentations:

  • Jasper Lozeman (UT): Surface Enhanced Vibrational Spectroscopy in a Flow-Through Microfluidic Chip
  • Vishak Chandra (TU/e): Direct Numerical Simulation of hot-spots in fixed bed reactors

09.25 Short break
09.40 3 x 20 minute PhD presentations:

  • Peter Dung (UT): Temperature mixing and heat transfer in turbulent bubbly flow
  • Freddy Oropeza Palacio (TU/e): Ni-Induced Hole States Enhance the Oxygen Evolution Reaction Activity of NixCo3-xO4
  • Stijn Hinterding (UU): Intermittent Charge Carrier Storage in Single Semiconductor Nanocrystals

10.40 Short break

11.00 Invited lecture by Prof. Guido Mul (UT):
Performance evaluation of Si-based photoanodes in solar to hydrogen devices

11.45 PhD/PD poster session 2
12.45 Lunch
13.45 Invited lecture by Dr. Ward van der Stam (UU):
C3 for the price of CO2: in-situ characterization of the CO2 reduction reaction on colloidal electrocatalyst nanoparticles
14.30 Short break
14.45 Debate competition for PhDs
15.50 Wrap up and ceremony (MCEC Poster Prize)
16.00 Closing



2019 MCEC Lectureship Prof. Karsten Reuter

The MCEC Management Team is happy to announce that Prof. Karsten Reuter (Chair for Theoretical Chemistry and Catalysis Research Center, Technical University of Munich) is recipient of the third MCEC Lectureship.

15-23 May, he will visit different MCEC research groups, give scientific lectures and participate in scientific discussions. Have a look at the program here.

In Utrecht, a combined lecturing program will be organized, which will also include a lecture from Prof. George Huber (Richard Antoine and Dororthy O’Brien Professor of Chemical Engineering at University of Wisconsin-Madison), who will visit Utrecht at the same time.

All lectures are open to both MCEC members and all other people interested; registration is not required. Also, PhD lectures will be organized in Eindhoven and Utrecht for all MCEC PhDs and PDs.
**13 May 2019

ERC Proof of Concept Grant awarded to Prof. Detlef Lohse and Prof. Bert Weckhuysen

Together with 54 other ERC grant holders, Prof. Detlef Lohse and Prof. Bert Weckhuysen received top-up funding from the European Research Council (ERC) via its Proof of Concept Grants (PoC), to explore the commercial or societal potential of their ERC-funded frontier research results. The awarded projects cover the following topics:

  • Prof. Detlef Lohse – Nanoextraction, separation and detection of micropollutants in one single and simple step
  • Prof. Bert Weckhuysen – Greenhouse gases to valuable liquid chemicals: High-flux zeolite membrane-based reactor for the efficient conversion of CH4 and CO2

Proof of Concept grants, worth €150,000 each, can be used for example to explore business opportunities, prepare patent applications or verify the practical viability of scientific concepts. The new grants were awarded to researchers working in 15 countries.




3 May 2019

Completion of PhD Cum Laude – Dr. Aditya Sengar

On April 18, Dr. Aditya Sengar received his PhD degree (cum laude) making him one of the youngest PhDs (at age 25) to do so from TU/e. Dr. Sengar’s work in mesoscale modeling has been able to connect reactions from a chemistry perspective(nanoscale) to a chemical reactor engineers perspective (microscale-macroscale). Here you can read the full text of the PhD thesis and here you’ll find the public summary. Congratulations Dr. Aditya Sengar!



18 April 2019

MCEC at U-talent Conference

On Tuesday April 16, Anne-Eva Nieuwelink and Robin Geitenbeek gave a presentation on luminescence thermometry for visitors of the U-Talent Conference.

U-Talent is a collaboration between Utrecht University, Hogeschool Utrecht and more than 40 partner schools from the Utrecht region. The goal of U-Talent is to strengthen regional science education in secondary education and in the bachelor phase of higher education. To improve the connection between secondary education and higher education the U-talent Conference invites teachers with different backgrounds. During their presentation, Anne-Eva and Robin also gave an insight into the process collaborating with other PhD scientists with different backgrounds.

16 April 2019

MCEC Annual Meeting June 19-20 2019, Enschede

MCEC Annual Meeting June 19-20 2019, Enschede

Special MCEC Section in Chemical Engineering Science

This month, Chemical Engineering Science truly has a lot in store for you. The journal features a special section on ‘Multiscale Energy Conversion from Catalytic Event to Reactor’, in which you’ll find articles from MCEC researchers and other experts who were invited to contribute. 

This special ‘MCEC issue’ is an initiative of Niels Deen (TU/e), who proposed the idea to the MCEC Management Team and the editorial board of Chemical Engineering Science where it was met with much enthusiasm. The result is a 186-page section that features research articles from i.e. Robin Geitenbeek (UU), Jiangtao Lu (TU/e), Beatriz Luna-Murillo (UU), Anne-Eva Nieuwelink (UU),  Aditya Sengar (TU/e), and Evgeny Uslamin (TU/e).

The special section offers a lot of insights on MCEC (related) topics, and showcases the scientific knowledge, talent and multidisciplinary approach MCEC has been developing and nourishing ever since its start. Please take note, new MCEC PhDs and community members, as it is a perfect starting point for reading up on catalysis and multiscale energy conversion.

To everyone involved in this issue: congratulations!





** April 1 2019

MCEC chemists publish in Nature Protocols

It is suddenly made possible for scientists all around the world to investigate the relationship between the structure and function of molecules during a chemical reaction. In Nature Protocols, Katinka Wondergem (MCEC linked PhD), Bert Weckhuysen and other chemists of Utrecht University, and chemists of the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) in the UK, are publishing a detailed protocol for tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy as an analytical technique. In another journal, they are describing a technique to produce stable probes for such measurements.

You can read the full press release by Utrecht University here.


28 March 2019