Apart from maintaining the VUV beamline at the Swiss Light Source, the Reaction Dynamics Group studies reactions and species relevant to low temperature combustion, catalysis, and atmospheric chemistry. We employ different flavors of coincidence techniques with velocity map imaging and time-of-flight mass spectrometry, together with synchrotron radiation as well as ultrafast lasers. Our goal is to understand chemical reaction dynamics in various energy and time domains.
Increasing the selectivity of a chemical process through rational catalyst design is the Holy Grail of heterogeneous catalysis. Researchers at PSI and ETH Zürich showcase how revealing hidden steps in reaction pathways can steer processes towards preferred products, as demonstrated in a study focused on biomass valorization.
20 international students visited PSI as part of the renowned Hercules School to learn about our state-of-the-art techniques and methodologies at our large scale facilities.
To celebrate contributions of highly influential early and mid-career researchers in energy research, the journal Energy & Fuels established an annual recognition of Energy and Fuels Rising Stars.
How are the first olefins formed in the early stages of the methanol-to-olefins process? Detection of two reactive ketene species solves this long-standing puzzle.
Methane valorization is a promising technology to utilize this platform compound to produce aromatics and hydrocarbons. Researchers from PSI and ETH Zürich unveiled this reaction mechanism and observed the molecular growth from the ground up. Besides stepwise CH3 addition, novel routes involving the dimerization of resonantly stabilized propargyl (C3H3) radicals to benzene (C6H6) were identified. These mechanistic insights will aid the development of valorisation strategies.
To develop sustainable lignin valorization strategies, a solid understanding of the underlying reaction mechanism is critical. By detection of highly reactive and elusive intermediates, new light could be shed on one of the most basic elementary reactions in lignin catalytic fast pyrolysis.
During the week of March 15 – 19, we had the pleasure to welcome 20 international PhD students, PostDocs and assistant professors at PSI, taking part in the first virtual HERCULES SCHOOL on Neutrons & Synchrotron Radiation.
The Ružička Prize 2020 goes to Dr. Patrick Hemberger (PSI) for his research on understanding the mechanisms of catalytic fast pyrolysis by unveiling reactive intermediates in heterogeneous catalysts.