Researcher - selective hydrogenation of sugars

Nov 23, 2018
Dec 12, 2018
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
The role

The researcher will:

  • prepare Fe-Ni and Fe-Cu catalysts on oxidic supports (SiO2, ZrO2) according to protocols formerly defined in the research team
  • set up the analytical part of the sugar hydrogenation test
  • define the experimental conditions (temperature, pressure, concentration…) for sugar hydrogenation in aqueous solution under hydrogen pressure
  • assess the catalytic performances of catalysts prepared by him/herself or by the other partners of the ANR project (Fe-Ni, Fe-Cu, Fe-Al systems)
  • quantitatively evaluate the possible deactivation of catalysts during reaction, for instance due to metal leaching
  • using experimental designs or optimization algorithms, determine which catalyst formulations and experimental conditions lead to maxima of activity, selectivity and stability
  • write the related progress reports in the framework of the ANR project, and the scientific publications deriving from her/his work


In the framework of the ANR project NobleFreeCat, the researcher will study the performances of bimetallic supported catalysts based on iron and on a second non-noble metal (Fe-Ni, Fe-Cu, Fe-Al) in the hydrogenation of sugars in an aqueous medium: xylose, maltose, and fructose as fallback solution. S/he will establish correlations between the formulation of the catalyst and catalytic properties (activity, selectivity, stability), and will determine the optimum experimental conditions for each reaction.

The institution

The Unité de Catalyse et Chimie du Solide (UMR 8181 CNRS; Unit of Catalysis and Solid State Chemistry) consists of 105 researchers and academics, 32 staff members for technical and administrative support, and an average of 80 PhD students and 20 post-doctoral researchers. The unit is located over several sites, in Lille and in Lens. The researcher will work on the site of Villeneuve d'Ascq, in buildings attached to two institutions, the Ecole Centrale de Lille and the Université de Lille.

The scientific activities of the unit can be divided into three fields: heterogeneous catalysis, catalysis and molecular chemistry, solid state chemistry. Within the Heterogeneous Catalysis axis, the researcher will work under the joint responsibility of a lecturer from the MATCAT team (Catalytic Materials), Dr. Eric Marceau, and from a CNRS researcher from the VAALBIO team (Upgrading of Alkanes and Biomass), Dr. Robert Wojcieszak.

The preparation of catalysts will be done in the chemistry laboratories of the MATCAT team (building C4 on the University campus). The catalysis part, main component of the project, will be carried out on the Realcat platform ( located at the Ecole Centrale de Lille, at walking distance from building C4 on the campus. Work will be organized by periods in either building.

In the framework of the ANR project, the researcher will participate in semiannual progress meetings organized in Lille or by the other partner laboratories (LCC, Toulouse; LCP, Orsay; IC2MP, Poitiers), during which s/he will present her/his results. If applicable, s/he will also participate in national or international congresses to present the results obtained during the contract.

The researcher will have defended a PhD in heterogeneous catalysis for less than 2 years.

  • Preferentially, the researcher will have gained experience in the handling of catalytic tests under pressure, and in the analysis of mixtures of organic molecules by chromatography.
  • Complementary experience in the characterization of solutions and/or heterogeneous catalysts will be appreciated.
  • Fluent knowledge and practice of English, written and spoken, is necessary for the writing of scientific articles and for communication about scientific work.


Similar jobs

Similar jobs