PhD position: Zeolite Catalysis - TU Delft

The following bilateral research project between BASF, TUDelft and Utrecht University has been defined within the ARC-CBBC consortium:

Exploration of non-commodity zeolite frameworks for small molecule activation: acidity, reactivity and coke formation.

Zeolites are widely used solid catalysts. Although there are more than 235 zeolite frameworks reported, almost all zeolite-based catalytic processes are performed by a limited number of frameworks. These are the so-called Big Five: FAU, MFI, FER, MOR and BEA. More recently, SAPO-34 and SSZ-13 with the CHA structure became
important catalysts in e.g. methanol-to-hydrocarbon process and selective catalytic reduction of NOx.

Since industry wishes to develop more sustainable conversion processes, it is crucial to explore the properties of less conventional zeolite frameworks. In this research project, several non-commodity zeolite framework structures are investigated as examples of small molecule activation processes. To gather detailed physicochemical
insights of these materials, a wide variety of bulk and local characterization methods will be used, while their performance is studied in the methanol-to-olefins (MTO) process as showcase. The latter allows making comparisons with current MTO catalysts.

A PhD position (4 yr) is available per direct at the Delft University of Technology within the Catalysis Engineering and Inorganic Systems Engineering teams.


• MSc degree in Chemical Engineering or equivalent
• Experience in applied heterogeneous catalysis is essential
• Expertise in zeolites and modeling is recommended
• Good command of English


Written applications, containing a motivation letter, curriculum vitae (including list of grades) and the names and contact details of two references, should be submitted before 24 February 2018 to: mentioning 'PhD position Zeolite Catalysis'.


Prof. dr. F. Kapteijn - or +31 15 278 3516
Assoc. prof. dr. E. Pidko - or +31 15 278 1938