Arthur, Center Court
12:00 – 14:00h
Brightlands Chemelot Campus
Driven by the global aspiration to achieve a CO2-neutral society, the conversion of CO2 to CH4 via the Sabatier reaction (CO2 + 4 H2 -> CH4 + 2 H2O) has recently grown into a significant research field. Besides the reduction of anthropogenic CO2 emissions, it offers the prospect of long-term storage of renewable energy, producing an easy-to-handle energy carrier with a high gravimetric storage density. Conventionally, the Sabatier reaction is performed in dark, catalyzed by supported metal nanoparticles, and requires thermal activation at temperatures between 300°C and 500°C. Instead of conventional heating, we successfully applied sunlight as sustainable energy source. We reported a Ru metal catalyst that facilitates methanation below 250 °C using sunlight as energy source. Although at low solar intensity (1 sun) the activity of the Ru catalyst is mainly attributed to photothermal effects, we identified a large non-thermal contribution at slightly elevated intensities (5.7 and 8.5 sun) resulting in a high photon-to-methane efficiency of up to 55% over the whole solar spectrum. We attribute the excellent sunlight-harvesting ability of the catalyst and the high photon-to-methane efficiency to its UV–vis–NIR plasmonic absorption. Plasmon-enhanced chemical reactions could pave the way to shift from conventional thermally activated processes to sustainable, solely sunlight-fueled ones.
Pascal Buskens studied chemistry at RWTH Aachen University, and performed his Ph.D. project in the group of Prof. Dr. Walter Leitner. During his PhD he focused on unravelling the reaction mechanism of the so-called aza-Baylis-Hillman reaction, and the development of new methods to perform this reaction enantioselectively. Pascal carried out part of this work at Oxford University under the supervision of Dr. John Brown. After receiving his PhD degree in 2006, Pascal worked as project leader and R&D program manager at DSM Functional Coatings (now DSM Advanced Solar). Since 2011, Pascal works for TNO as principal scientist. In addition, he performed his habilitation at RWTH Aachen University under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Martin Möller. After successfully completing his habilitation in 2016 with a thesis on Nanostructured Optical Materials, he was appointed part-time professor at Hasselt University and lector at Zuyd Hogeschool. He received various awards for his research, including the Brochers Plakette, the Friedrich-Wilhelm Preis and the TNO award for Excellent Researcher of the Year. He currently runs the TNO program on Chemical Energy Conversion, and the Brightlands Materials Center program on Sustainable Buildings.
12.00-12.05h – Welcome
12.05-13.00h – Sunlight as fuel for sustainable chemical processes by Pascal Buskens
13.00-13.15h – Q&A
13.15-14.00h – Lunch at Foyer, Center Court
If you are an external event visitor without a Brightlands Chemelot Campus pass, you will receive a separate email with the access instructions to the campus 2 days before the event. This email contains the Campus Safety Instruction which you have to follow in order to get an e-ticket with a personal QR code. With this personal QR code you can access the campus, without a QR code, access to Brightlands Chemelot Campus will be denied.
For route description and parking please click here: https://community.brightlands.com/contact/
Brightlands Chemelot Campus is not an ordinary industrial site. There are chemical plants in the immediate vicinity that handle dangerous materials. If an emergency alarm is sounded proceed directly to the main hall of Center Court and follow the instructions issued by the organization.
The public area in Center Court is an emergency space. For more information we recommend you view the video ‘Welcome to Center Court’.