Dr Camila Fernandez has received the €10,000 Umicore Materials Technology Award.
Dr Camila Fernandez has received the €10,000 Umicore Materials Technology Award.

Dr Camila Fernandez has received the €10,000 Umicore Materials Technology Award for her PhD work in the field of exploring dynamic catalytic processes for synthesizing ammonia on ruthenium-supported nanoparticles at low temperatures.

Dr Fernandez's entry was one of 15 submitted from all over Europe.

Dr Fernandez, who is from Chile, started her academic work on catalysis during her masters studies at the University of Concepción in that country. During these studies, she took part in a research exchange at UCL where she deepened her interest in the subject. In 2011, she moved to Belgium to embark on her doctoral studies under the supervision of Professors Eric Gaigneaux and Patricio Ruiz at UCL's Institut de la Matière Condensée et Nanosciences.

‘I am very happy that this work has been recognized in the industrial world,’ said Dr Fernandez. ‘The research that we have done sheds new light on the way catalytic reactions work and will hopefully lead to further improvements in catalytic performance in the future.’

‘Catalysis is one of Umicore's main competences and we hope that Dr Fernandez's work will increase awareness and understanding of catalysis in this specific field,’ said An Van de Vel, Umicore's senior manager of external science and technology. ‘Her thesis is also an example of outstanding academic work that has obvious practical benefits such as lowering energy consumption and increasing selectivity in catalytic reactions.’

The research poster can be found here (pdf).

This story is reprinted from material from Umicore, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.