Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies

Dr Ulrich Hintermair awarded Catalysis Medal

Fri Dec 09 10:15:00 GMT 2016


The UK Catalysis Hub have awarded the Sir John Meurig Thomas Catalysis Medal to CSCT Whorrod Research Fellow Dr Ulrich Hintermair for his outstanding achievement in catalysis for multidisciplinary contributions to the development and applications of catalysts for sustainable chemistry. Dr Hintemair was selected from the nominations for top early career scientists working in the United Kingdom and was presented with this award at the UK Catalysis Hub Winter Conference on 6 December. 

Dr Hintermair said: "Receiving the inaugural JMT Medal is a fantastic honour that came as a huge surprise to me. Although not really a heterogeneous catalysis researcher myself, I've always admired Sir John for his meticulous and coherent contributions to materials and surface science, his unified description of catalysis based on topicity, and his sustained efforts to communicate the importance of catalysis and sustainable chemistry to policy makers and the wider public. I feel very honoured and am deeply grateful to the UK Catalysis Hub for recognising my comparably small contributions to catalysis with this prestigious distinction."

Professor C. Richard A. Catlow, FRS catalyst by design theme leader said, “Ulrich has a very rounded and wide-ranging skill set within the field of catalysis, he is equally comfortable as a process engineer, as an organometallic chemist and as a physical organic chemist. This is reflected in the breadth of his achievements in working on very fundamental mechanistic problems through to the commercial application of catalysts through a spin off company of which he is Chief Scientific Advisor.”

“His three most significant achievements to date are:

1. His discovery of Ir-based water-splitting catalysts with Bob Crabtree. These are the best catalysts out there for water oxidation and he has taken this work from molecular organometallic species through to supported catalysts with extremely low loading that are commercially viable in a number of sectors.
2. His development of supercritical CO 2 flow systems with Walter Leitner that led to new patented processes for sustainable manufacture of formic acid from CO 2
3. His development of Flow NMR spectroscopy for in operando mechanistic study of solution phase catalysis which has led to close collaboration with Bruker UK and is now underpinned by a £1.2M project to develop a national reaction monitoring facility at University of Bath."

This was the inaugural year for the new medal. Dr Hintermair delivered a lecture on his water-oxidation catalysts to the UK Catalysis Hub Winter conference attended by over 150 people. Speakers for the Catalysis Hub Winter conference included members of the Catalysis Hub and wider international catalysis community. The JMT medal was generously sponsored by BP, JM, Dow, Dr Reddys, Invista, Givaudan and Sasol, and presented by Sir John Meurig Thomas himself.

For more information, please contact:

Rubina Kalra
Digital Communications Co-ordinator
Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies 

e-mail: R.Kalra@bath.ac.uk
Tel: 01225 385827