PRISM/PCCM SEMINAR SERIES SPRING 2022 (Virtual): Ange Nzihou, Institut Mines Telecom (IMT) Albi and CNRS, France

Date
Feb 9, 2022, 12:00 pm1:00 pm
Speaker
Event Description

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Insights on Nanostructured Bio-Carbon Materials and their Sustainable Production

Abstract: We have developed a sustainable approach to produce energy and advanced carbon materials from bio-based resources. On the energy production side, the research we carry out has led to advancements in the production of hydrogen and synthetic gas from biomass and biowaste. From those feedstocks, we have also explored an environmentally friendly approach to synthetize biographene. In this presentation, I will cover the challenges facing graphitization of biomass polymers such as cellulose, a poorly graphitizable material, and how we have successfully obtained a graphite-like structure with multi-layers of graphene sheets using an iron catalyst. Experiment and simulation have been used to uncover atomic arrangements and the nanostructure of the carbon produced from the graphitization of cellulose at various temperatures and iron concentrations. Raman spectroscopy and X-ray pair distribution function (PDF) analysis have revealed the stacking of graphene layers and average crystallite size, while high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) allowed for determination of the spatial distribution of the graphitic domain. We demonstrate that specific iron surfaces/sites likely act as ideal locations for nucleation and growth of graphene sheets and thus lower the activation energy for graphitization in traditionally non-graphitizable bioresources.

Bio: Ange Nzihou is a Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at the RAPSODEE Research Center-CNRS, Institut Mines Telecom, IMT Mines Albi (France). He is currently a Fulbright visiting professor at Princeton University (USA). He holds visiting professor positions at Zhejiang University (China) and Mahatma Gandhi University (India). He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal "Waste and Biomass Valorization" (Springer Nature) and the Editor of the Handbook on “Characterization of Biomass, Biowaste and related By-products” (Springer Nature).

His main research fields and expertise are energy and added-value materials from biomass and waste; bioresources to biochar, graphitic materials and graphene; hydrogen and syngas production from bioresources; elaboration, functionalization of carbon and phosphate-based composites / hybrid materials (sorbents, catalysts, energy carriers, sensors) for energy and depollution; thermochemical processes (pyrolysis, gasification, reforming); Behavior of pollutants such as heavy metals and aerosols (fine particles)

He has published about 200 papers in international peer reviewed journals, got 5 world patents (2 scaled-up in industry), edited 1 reference book, co-edited 3 books and co-authored 12 book chapters, chaired and co-chaired 10 international conferences, 2 international summer schools. He is currently a PI of 2 research chairs (joint laboratories) with industry.

He has received international and national scientific recognitions and awards such as the Fulbright scholarship in 2020, the Grand Prix of the Academy of Sciences of France in 2018, and the insignia of Knight of National Order of Merit (Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite) on the behalf of the President of France in 2017 for his scientific accomplishment.