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The University of Southampton

Amphiphilic catalysts for biphasic reactions in Pickering emulsions  Seminar

22 January 2018
Building 27, Lecture Room 2001, Chemistry, University of Southampton

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Prof Robert Raja at .

Event details

Seminar with Dr Marc Pera-Titus; E2P2L - UMI 3464 CNRS-Solvay Deputy Director

The production of chemicals and fuels using bio-based reagents is critical for a real transformation of the chemical industry towards sustainability. Typical organic syntheses using vegetable oils and fatty derivatives usually encompass immiscible reagents. Organic solvents are commonly used for boosting the miscibility of reactants and conditioning the catalytic activity. Nonetheless, solvents require further extraction/purification steps for recovery and reuse, hampering the economy and green footprint of the processes. Surfactants and phase-transfer catalysts are often employed for promoting the contact and distributing the catalyst between the phases. Despite their potential benefits, all these methods are discouraged for industrial use, since they require additives that can be hardly recyclable.


Amphiphilic nanoparticles can stabilize emulsions (i.e. Pickering emulsions), allowing per se facile separation and recycling after operation. Appropriate functionalization of their surface may combine both surfactant and catalytic properties at the interface of both phases. Along this seminar, different strategies for preparing amphiphilic catalysts will be presented for conducting biphasic reactions with impact for industrial applications. In particular, we will illustrate how computational tools can assist catalyst development for target reactions.


Amphiphilic catalysts for biphasic reactions in Pickering emulsions
Amphiphilic catalysts for biphasic reactions in Pickering emulsions
Dr Marc Pera-Titus
Dr Marc Pera-Titus

Speaker information

Dr Marc Pera-Titus, E2P2L - UMI 3464 CNRS-Solvay Deputy Director. Marc Pera-Titus received a double MSc degree in Chemical Engineering (2001) and Physical Chemistry (2002) and a PhD (cum laude) in Membrane Technology (2006) at University of Barcelona (Spain). In 2007, he joined as postdoc the group of Jean-Alain Dalmon at IRCELYON/CNRS (France) with a Marie Curie EIF grant. In 2008, he was appointed CNRS scientist at the same institution. He was Visiting Professor at HKUST (Hong Kong) in 2008 and 2009. In 2011, he received his Habilitation degree (HDR) from the University Claude Bernard Lyon 1. Also in 2011, Marc was appointed project leader and expert at E2P2L in Shanghai (deputy director since January 2016). The main research interests of Marc at E2P2L focus on the design and shaping of materials for catalysis and separation with a sound insight into process eco-design. His current activities cover 4 main topics: (1) acid-base catalysis for biomass conversion, (2) amination catalysis for the synthesis of monomers, (3) oxidation catalysis for the synthesis of surfactants, and (4) biphasic catalysis for solvent-free reactions. Marc is author of about 100 peer-reviewed papers, 8 book chapters and conference proceedings, and inventor of 13 patents in the fields of zeolite membranes, membrane reactors, adsorption and heterogeneous catalysis with more than 3000 citations. Marc has received numerous awards, including the Rhone-Alpes Foundation Award (2007), the Elsevier Award for highly cited author in Catalysis (2009), the Silver Medal from the Chinese Academy of Inventions (together with E2P2L team) (2016), and the DivCat award from the French Society of Chemistry (2017). 1. Nano-flowered Ce@MOR hybrids with modulated acid properties for the vapor-phase dehydration of 1,3-butanediol into butadiene. L. Fang, F. Jing, J. Lu, B. Hu, M. Pera-Titus, Green Chem., 2017, 19, 4610 (special edition ISGC 2017, La Rochelle). 2. Aquivion®–carbon composites via hydrothermal carbonization: amphiphilic catalysts for solvent-free biphasic acetalization. W. Fang, Z.Y. Fan, H. Shi, S. Wang, W. Shen, H. Xu, J-M. Clacens, A. Liebens, M. Pera-Titus, J. Mater. Chem A, 2016, 4, 4380 – Hot paper and Selection 2016. 3. Pickering interfacial catalysis for biphasic systems: from emulsion design to green reactions. M. Pera-Titus, L. Leclercq, J-M. Clacens, F. De Campo, V. Nardello-Rataj. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2015, 54, 2006. 4. Hexylenediamine (HMDA) from fossil vs. bio-based routes: an economic and Life Cycle Assessment comparative study. A.B. Dros, O. Larue, A. Reimond, F. De Campo, M. Pera-Titus. Green Chem., 2015, 17, 4760 – Highlighted by Green Chem.

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