Academic experts will work on three research themes, collaborating closely with the industry on Energy Carriers, Functional materials & specialties and Coatings.

“As technology competition heats up from around the world, ARC CBBC is a key element to secure the delivery of unique and exclusive solutions needed for a better and sustainable future.” 
Peter Nieuwenhuizen, RD&I director BA Specialty Chemicals at AkzoNobel

Energy carriers

A clean, sustainable and steady energy supply for next generations will require the development of novel chemical building blocks and materials that will provide efficient and safe energy storage solutions. ARC CBBC is exploring the development of such energy carriers, as well as the conversion technology to enable the production processes of these energy carriers.

Our aims

We want, for example, to find novel routes to activate small molecules such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrogen. Our approach is to develop both homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts that are able to make larger hydrocarbons from small molecules, like carbon dioxide and water.

Functional materials & specialties

Responsible use of material resources means that by-products from chemical production processes should be considered as useful reactants for the production of new chemicals. Furthermore, smart hybrid materials will enable us to lower our ecological footprints today and in the future.

Our aims

ARC CBBC will develop innovative specialty chemicals as well as materials. For example efficient, sustainable and environmentally benign heterogeneous catalysts based on abundant and readily available chemical elements. This will enable the chemical industry to manufacture products in a more sustainable and clean way.


Multifunctional coatings have advanced properties. They will for example be self-healing, have shape memory, or can cope with extreme heat and cold. They will enable the future use of materials in a more efficient and sustainable way, for example by elongating their life-span or by enabling them to perform under harsh conditions.

Our aims

We are working on sustainably sourced carbon building blocks for coating binders, as well as on novel homogeneous catalysts to produce these advanced and functional coatings. Novel molecules are expected not only to improve coating performance and green coating production, but also to contribute to a more sustainable use of coated materials in general.