Ceri HammondEFCATS BEST PhD THESIS AWARD: Dr. Ceri HAMMOND
The EFCATS Best PhD Thesis Award 2013 has been awarded ex aequo to Matteo Carganelo and Ceri Hammond. Ceri Hammond's thesis on the topic of methane partial oxidation to methanol demonstrated the application of a wide range of synthesis, analytical characterisation and mechanistic analysis to make real progress in an extremely difficult area. The work showed that low temperature activation of methane for partial oxidation can be made highly selective using a zeolite catalyst with hydrogen peroxide as the oxidant, in aqueous media. Ceri used a carefully designed set of experiments to identify the active site responsible for this remarkable reaction and to show how selectivity can be optimised through control of side reactions. The work has been published in top flight journals and already received considerable attention. The work was carried out at the Cardiff Catalysis Institute in the UK under the supervision of Prof. Graham Hutchings and sponsored through the Dow methane challenge project, as a "blue skies" research venture.