Research Interns for Ebio Project

University of Twente-Photo Catalytic Group

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Inspired by Ebio’s energy transition goal, two research interns from Saxion University of Applied Sciences joined our efforts at the University of Twente Enschede. At the PCS group, both interns will work on the development of electrocatalyst materials and determine their efficiency for application in bulb and non-bulb electrolysis of pyrolysis liquid model compounds.

Tim van der Weerd. The 24-year-old 3rd-year bachelor’s student in chemistry at Saxion has been working in the PCS Group since February 1, 2022. “I’m thrilled to be working with such an old but relatively unexplored concept. The thought that a 19th-century discovery could help today’s world is very exciting. I would like to see a future where this technology is successfully applied. My role in this research is to determine what impact different aspects of the anode have on the production of hydrocarbons during the Kolbe electrolysis of acetic acid. In the marathon to a sustainable world, this is just one step, but it is these steps that will ultimately carry us across the finish line.”

Tim Van der Weerd, Chemistry Student research intern

Timo Koopman, 23, a fourth-year bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Saxion University, joined the PCS group at the same time as Tim. Timo is very interested in nanotechnology and surface characterization. “The work on the electrochemical refinement of pyrolysis oil, more precisely on the anode side of the electrochemical cell, is one of the challenges we face in electrochemistry,” Timo explains his motivation. “I’m interested in finding a good alternative for the electrode material, which is currently platinum, which is very expensive. Therefore, I’m trying to functionalize stable substrates with platinum nanoparticles to minimize the platinum content and eventually get higher yields of Kolbe/non-Kolbe products, I’ve worked with nanoparticles before and find them very interesting, so I’m also aiming for a masters in nanotechnology, so it’s a good experience for me.”

Timo Koopman, Chemistry Student research intern

We wish Tim and Timo all the best in their research and hope they enjoy their stay at the University of Twente.

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