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Press release ¤ Information de presse

Mar 15, 2018

Tailor-made catalysts and innovative reactor concepts

Dr. Andreas Johannes Vorholt from the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Energy Conversion in Mülheim / Germany receives the Jochen Block Prize of the German Catalysis Society 2018 for his work on the homogeneously catalyzed conversion of renewable materials with innovative reactor concepts. The Jochen Block Prize, which honours the achievements of young scientists, is endowed with 3,000 € and will be presented at the 51th Annual Meeting of German Catalysis Scientists in Weimar/Germany on 15 March 2018.

Through the use of renewable resources, fossil materials can be replaced or even completely new products can be produced. Andreas J. Vorholt focuses on industrial applications and develops processes that are transferred from laboratory scale to continuously operating mini plants. For example, with the help of homogeneous catalysis he succeeded in producing monomers or tensides, which are of interest for industrial purposes. He uses innovative recycling concepts for separating the expensive catalyst material from the product and reuse it. Thanks to tailor-made catalysts, renewable raw materials can also be used as starting materials for the synthesis of fine chemicals. His work closes the gap between fundamental research and application.

Andreas J. Vorholt studied chemistry at the TU Dortmund / Germany. He holds a master's degree in economics and a doctorate in technical chemistry from the faculty of Biochemistry and Chemical Engineering. After completing his doctorate in 2011, he worked for one year as an industrial consultant in various industries in process optimization. From 2013 to 2017 he habilitated at the Institute of Technical Chemistry at the TU Dortmund. He is lecturer at the RWTH Aachen University / Germany and the Technical University of Dortmund / Germany. Since 2018 he is group leader in the field of multiphase catalysis at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Energy Conversion in Mülheim / Germany.

His work on the implementation of lipid substances was honoured with the H.P. Kaufmann Prize in 2016 by the German Society for Fat Science, in 2017 he was awarded the Carl Zerbe Prize by the DGMK German Society for Petroleum and Coal Science and Technology and he received the Prize for Up-and-Coming Teachers in Higher Education from DECHEMA.

Photo of the award-winner


The German Catalysis Society (GeCatS) is the platform for the entire German catalysis community in the area of research and application. Currently it has some 1100 members from industry and academia. GeCatS promotes the scientific and technical dialogue between industry, universities, non-university research institutes and research policy institutions and represents the interests of the catalysis community on a national and international level. The German Catalysis Society is supported by DECHEMA, VDI-GVC, GDCh, DGMK und DBG.

The Jochen Block Prize of the German Catalysis Society is awarded at irregular intervals. The prize is awarded to research projects and developments by young scientists in the field of catalysis who have not yet been appointed to a full professorship and who have stimulated the field of catalysis in a special way through fundamental and original investigations.



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