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Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology

Ceren Camur

CEB researcher, Ceren Çamur, has been awarded the Extraordinary Doctorate Prize 2018-2019 of the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (UAB) for her PhD thesis, defended in the academic year 2018-2019.

Ceren completed her PhD degree in Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group (ICN2, Barcelona), supervised by Prof Daniel Maspoch, and defended her thesis on "Advances on the synthesis of MOFs at scale".

"MOFs are one of the most exciting advances in recent porous materials science," says Dr Çamur. "They are solids with very high porosity in the nanopore range. MOFs comprise the assembly of metal ions or nodes with organic ligands that can be designed and modified with functional groups to tune the size of the chemistry of the pores. The tuneable nature has led to more than 90,000 MOF structures in the last 20 years with various chemical and physical properties. Therefore, MOFs have great potential in diverse sectors covering energy, environmental and biological applications."

The momentum gained by these materials in academic studies has not yet been translated to industry due to the limitations of the current synthesis methods. Çamur's research focuses on developing scalable, green, and cost-effective synthetic pathways for the industrial production of MOFs to enable easy scale-up in existing pilot plants and more extensive facilities.

During her PhD studies, Çamur worked under the frame of an EU project called ProDIA, aiming to accelerate the industrialisation of hybrid nanoporous materials, especially MOFs, in Europe. She has successfully created synthesis processes by using the spray-drying method enabling the manufacture of MOF powders at a multi-kilogram scale in collaboration with 12 partners, including companies and universities.

"Winning this award results from three years of hard work and teamwork, which I am proud to be part of," says Çamur. 

Çamur continues her research in the Adsorption and Advanced Materials group at CEB, focusing on the design and sol-gel synthesis of MOFs that yield monolithic porous materials in collaboration with Immaterial Ltd., aiming to make these advanced materials at an economically feasible price for various applications. "We hope that the anticipated benefits from MOFs superior performance in academic research can be finally used in real-life applications," says Çamur. "This places MOFs perfectly to meet tomorrow's significant challenges in energy, environmental and health application areas."

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