Hidde Nolten

Hidde Nolten

PhD candidate

Working with: prof. dr. Petra de Jongh

Employed since: September 2022
Email: h.l.nolten@uu.nl
Room: DDW 4th floor open area

Supported Au-based catalysts for selective oxidation

Conversion of biomass into useful chemicals is relevant to decrease our dependency on fossil fuels. 5-hydroxymethyl furfural (HMF), a chemical derived from sugar, can be used to make 2,5-furandicarboxylic acid (FDCA), which again is used to make bio-based polymers. A simplified reaction mechanism with several intermediates is depicted in the figure. Herein, a selective catalyst is required to obtain a high FDCA yield and not end up with side-products, such as diformylfuran (DFF) and 2,5-hydroxymethylfurancarboxylic acid (HMFCA). [1]

Gold catalysts were found very active in HMF oxidation and other oxidation reactions, such as the oxidation of CO, propene and glucose. In this project we modify gold catalysts by changing particle size or alloying them with other metals, aiming to optimize their performance in HMF oxidation. Key characterization methods for these catalysts are X-Ray Diffraction, UV-VIS spectroscopy, determination of elemental weight loadings using ICP-OES, X-Ray absorption spectroscopy and most importantly Transmission Electron Microscopy. These characterizations methods are not only used to look at catalysts prior its usage, but also to study how they change during catalysis and how they look after catalysis.

In our group there is experience both with supported gold-nanoparticles (2-4 nm) , used in selective butadiene hydrogenation,[2] propene oxidation,[3,4] and HMF oxidation.[5,6]

[1] R.J. Davis et al Catal. Today, 2011, 160, 55-60.
[2] P.E. de Jongh et al., ChemCatChem, 2017, 9, 2418-2425
[3] B. Donoeva et al., J. Phys. Chem. C, 2021, 125, 16557-16568
[4] P.E. de Jongh et al., Catalysts, 2022, 12, 327
[5] P.E. de Jongh et al., ACS Catal. 2017, 7, 4581-4591
[6] P.E. de Jongh et al., Appl. Catal. A, 2018, 561, 150-157



PhD Candidate on gold-based catalysts for selective oxidation supervised by Prof. Dr. P.E. de Jongh in the Materials Chemistry and Catalysis group, at Utrecht University

MSc Chemistry: Nanomaterials Science at Utrecht University

Master thesis: “Supported CuPd catalysts by colloidal synthesis for selective hydrogenation of 1,3-butadiene” under supervision of Oscar Brandt Corstius and Prof. Petra de Jongh in the group Materials Chemistry and Catalysis at Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Master Internship: “COx-free H2-production by Ru/CeO2 catalysts in ammonia decomposition reactions” in the group of Prof. Edman Shik Chi Tsang at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom

Literature study: “On the role of the copper valence state in C2+ selective  electroreduction of CO2” under supervision of Jim de Ruiter and dr. Ward van der Stam in the Inorganic Chemistry and Catalysis group at Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Bachelor Chemistry, Utrecht University

Bachelor thesis: “Towards full control in the synthesis of CuInS2 Nanosheets” under supervision of Serena Busatto and dr. Celso de Mello Donegá in the Condensed Matter and Interfaces group of Prof. Andries Meijerink at Utrecht University

Born in Rotterdam, the Netherlands

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