Liquid core capsules as catalysts: preparation from Pickering emulsions, understanding of diffusional phenomena


Catalytic processes have long been used regularly in academia and in various industries. One of the major objectives of catalysis today is to improve catalytic systems by combining the performance of homogeneous catalysis with the ease of implementation of heterogeneous catalysis.
Solid/liquid emulsions, known as Pickering emulsions, are an excellent means of preparing well-controlled batch liquid/solid/liquid media. These emulsions can then be transformed into catalytic micro-capsules with a well-controlled geometry.  
Liquid-core micro-capsules are micrometric objects capable of immobilizing a catalytic system in their core. The capsule then behaves like a micro-reactor in which the reaction takes place. The keys to the success of this type of system lie in a good match between the external environment, the shell and the core of this micro-reactor. The understanding of the diffusive phenomena of the reagents and the reaction products to and from the core of the capsule should allow to optimize its operation.
The objective of this thesis is to describe and understand the diffusive phenomena in microcapsules with ionic liquid core. To this end, a series of micro-capsules will be prepared from Pickering emulsions, and characterized by (cryo)microscopy techniques coupled with image analysis, as well as by NMR-based techniques, thermoporosimetry, in IFPEN or ENS Lyon labs. Finally, the performance of these micro-reactors will be evaluated in catalysis in a series of model reactions.

Keywords: Encapsulation, ionic liquid, catalysis, diffusional limitations, diffusive properties, nanomaterials, colloidosomes, Pickering emulsions

  • Academic supervisor    Pr PAROLA Stephane, laboratoire de Chimie UMR5182 ENS/UCBL/CNRS 
  • Doctoral School    Ecole doctorale Chimie, Procédé, Environnement
  • IFPEN supervisor    LECOCQ Vincent, Ph. D., Material Design Department,
  • PhD location    ENS Lyon / IFPEN Lyon, France
  • Duration and start date    3 years, starting in fourth quarter 2022
  • Employer    IFPEN Lyon, France
  • Academic requirements    University Master degree chemistry or material design or analysis
  • Language requirements    Fluency in French or English, willingness to learn French

To apply, please send your cover letter and CV to the IFPEN supervisor indicated here above

IFPEN supervisor
 Dr LECOCQ Vincent
Département Génie des Matériaux Divisés
About IFP Energies nouvelles

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