Bert Weckhuysen on China mission for ARC CBBC

Bert Weckhuysen was on a China mission for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy. The goal was to foster scientific cooperation between industry and universities between the two countries and to develop research programs for cooperation with the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) within the Advanced Research Center Chemical Building Blocks Consortium (ARC CBBC). Weckhuysen also visited Peking University, where he gave the Physical Chemistry Chang-Ge Lecture.

You can read more on the website of ARC CBBC.


22 March 2019

Comenius Teaching Fellow for Bert Weckhuysen

Bert Weckhuysen (UU) has received a grant of 50k Euro from the Netherlands Initiative for Education Research (NRO), for innovation in academic education: “The Da Vinci Project: Towards an active learning-by-doing approach to train a new generation of true connectors in the field of sustainability”. This course, which will be launched in the academic year 2019-2020, will complement the current Utrecht University honours program, and is meant for 3rd years bachelors students from different faculties.

You can read more on the website of the KNAW (in Dutch).



21 March 2019

Article of MCEC scientists on cover of Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters

The article “Optoelectronic Properties of Ternary I-III-VI2 Semiconductor Nanocrystals: Bright Prospects with Elusive Origins” from  Anne Berends, Mark Mangnus (new MCEC PhD), Chenghui Xia, Freddy Rabouw, and Celso de Mello Donega has reached the cover of the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters.

Check the article here.


18 March 2019

New MCEC PhDs in Utrecht meet and greet

The selection process for the second PhD Call may be in full swing – already thirty MCEC PhDs have started with their projects in Utrecht, Twente and Eindhoven. MCEC Office organized a small get-together with coffee & cake to welcome the new Utrecht-based PhDs. There were talks of background and current research, but also of hobbies and (personal) affinities with sustainability.

First-phase MCEC Community members Ahmed Ismail, Petra Keijzer, Anne-Eva Nieuwelink, and Laurens Mandemaker also dropped by to introduce themselves and to explain a little more about their research and their experiences working within the research center.

F.l.t.r.: Laurens Mandemaker (1st phase), Mark Mangnus, Michael Jenks, Thomas van Swieten, Anne-Eva van Nieuwelink (1st phase), Petra Keijzer (1st phase), Joris Koek, Romy Riemersma, Erik Maris, Ahmed Ismail (1st phase), Jochem van Duin, Rafael Mayorga Gonzalez and Ellen Sterk.

Thank you all for coming!

12 March 2019

Reduce, Reuse & Recycle – Bert Weckhuysen at PAC Symposium 2019

The PAC-symposium is an annual chemistry symposium for students organized by students. The symposium is organized by Stichting PAC, which is formed each year by students from four study associations: ACD, CDL, U.S.S. Proton and VCSVU. This years’ 25th programme centers around the theme ‘Back to the Future‘ and is held at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam.

Today, in his lecture, Prof. Bert Weckhuysen will discuss how catalysis is being used to create waste-powered transport and why it is so difficult to convert carbon dioxide into fuels and chemicals.


7 March 2019


On March 4-6, The Netherlands’ Catalysis and Chemistry Conference took place in Noordwijkerhout. A good number of MCEC PhDs were present with talks and poster presentations.  The 20th anniversary meeting comprised plenary and keynote lectures by invited speakers, and selected oral papers and posters. Scientists, and especially PhD-students, were encouraged to submit abstracts so they can present their work, discuss it with leading scientists and representatives from industry. NCCC welcomed Prof. Sylvia Bordiga for an opening lecture sponsored by MCEC.

You can now view all the poster abstracts and oral presentations on the NCCC website. The complete programme (including abstracts) is available online too.


4-6 March 2019

Vici Grant for Devaraj van de Meer (UT)

Photo: Gijs van Ouwerkerk

Devaraj van der Meer (UT) will receive a Vici grant, worth 1.5 million euros, from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). This Vici program will unravel the intricate physics behind the impact of a boiling water droplet on a surface.

The Vici grant, worth 1.5 million euros, is the highest in the Veni-Vidi-Vici programme of NWO. It enables very experienced researchers to form and strengthen their research group. Of 239 proposals, 32 were awarded, worth 48 million euros in total.




26 February 2019

Second MCEC PhD Call is open

The first call resulted in an overwhelming 900 applications, and 30 positions have been filled. An overview of the 8 vacant positions can be found here.



22 February 2019

Lecture Bert Weckhuysen at Royal Institution London

“Earth to earth, dust to dust, carbon to carbon: Bert Weckhuysen, Distinguished University Professor ‘Catalysis, Energy and Sustainability’, sketches the ingredients for a true circular economy. In his lecture at the Royal Institution in London, he explained how catalysis research can contribute to a cleaner world, and how politics and government need to play an essential part by introducing adequate legislation.” Read the full article on the website of Utrecht University.


20 February 2019

ARC CBBC festively opens new lab

ARC CBBC’s opening of its first own lab was celebrated last Wednesday 13 February on the fourth floor of the Vening Meinesz Building B of Utrecht University. Speeches were given by Utrecht University Rector Magnificus Henk Kummeling, President of the ARC CBBC Supervisory Board Marjan Oudeman and ARC CBBC Scientific Director Bert Weckhuysen. The official opening act was executed by Henk Kummeling and Dean of the Faculty of Science Isabel Arends, by filling a glass version of the ARC CBBC logo with a blue liquid. You can read more and view a photo gallery of the festive opening on ARC CBBC’s website.

You can also read about the opening on the newspage of Utrecht University, on the Netherlands Government’s website dedicated to Topsectoren (in Dutch), or on online magazine Agro & Chemie (in Dutch).


13 February 2019