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Heterogeneous Catalysis and Sustainable Chemistry
HCSC group, 2022, NCCC XXIII
HCSC group, 2022, NCCC XXIII

Our mission statement

To discover new catalysts and materials for sustainable chemistry and energy applications, and have lots of fun meanwhile.

Principal investigators

HCSC is led by two PIs with complementary research lines: Gadi Rothenberg (catalyst design) and Amanda Garcia (electrochemistry and
electrocatalytic synthesis). We work chiefly on fundamental processes that relate to bulk chemicals and sustainable energy solutions. The applications include chemicals from biomass, CO2 conversion, sustainable processes and catalysis for clean energy.

Lab facilities

Our state-of-the-art labs labs are located at the Amsterdam Science Park in building E, and cover the (electrochemical) synthesis, testing and characterisation of catalysts and porous materials.

Teaching activities

We coordinate courses and teach chemistry and catalysis at all levels. Our undergraduate textbook Catalysis: Concepts and Green Applications covers homogeneous, heterogeneous and biocatalysis from a Green Chemistry perspective. Publisher Wiley-VCH says it’s the most popular introductory text in catalysis. The Chinese version, translated to Chinese by profs. Xu, Shen, Yue and Hua of Fudan University, was published in 2020 by Higher Education Press of the Chinese Ministry for Education. Our textbook on Ceramic Membranes is used in graduate and senior undergraduate courses.

Handbook of Porous Materials

In November 2020, our new Handbook of Porous Materials was published by WorldScientific. Written by experts from all over the world, this 4-volume reference work covers the synthesis, characterisation and applications of porous materials for catalysis, industrial separations and energy conversion and storage.

Industrial collaborations

We work closely with industry on several projects, both in public-private partnerships and contract research.

Knowledge valorisation

Our research has led to several patents, some of which were sold to industry. We also founded of three sprin-off companies: Sorbisense A/S in Denmark manufactures and markets passive samplers for monitoring soil and groundwater (bought by Eurofins in 2018), Yellow Diesel BV, that developed new routes to biodiesel via heterogeneous catalysis, and Plantics BV, that markets a new biodegradable plastic that was invented in the group. We also invented new Fischer-Tropsch catalysts (with Total), and a catalyst and process for removing cyanide from wastewater, which was scaled up by Tata Steel.

Open-access publishing

All our research is published in international peer-reviewed journals. We focus on societies’ journals, and publish our papers open-access. Group members are also encouraged to write semi-popular articles. We do not review papers for commercial publishers.


Our PhD and postdoc vacancies are always published online here. If no vacancies are listed, NO POSITIONS are available. MSc and BSc project students are welcome to apply by contacting one of the PIs.