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New £500,000 lab to train tomorrow’s chemists

Students using Cardiff CDT lab

Students using the new £500,000 catalysis lab

Visitors to Cardiff CDT lab

Enjoying a tour of the new catalysis lab are (left to right): Professor Graham Hutchings, Director of the Cardiff Catalysis Institute; Professor Colin Riordan, Vice-Chancellor, Cardiff University; Professor Paul Pringle, School of Chemistry, University of Bristol; and Dr Pawel Plucinski, University of Bath

21 April 2015

A high-tech science hub dedicated to training world leaders in catalysis has opened its doors to students from the Universities of Bristol and Bath.

The Centre for Doctoral Training brings together a new science lab and seminar room for students who study catalysis – the science of speeding chemical change.

The new rooms sit within Cardiff Catalysis Institute (CCI) – one of the world’s top five catalysis research centres and the leading facility of its kind in the UK.

Since it was established in 2008, CCI – part of Cardiff University – has generated over £23 million in income. Its 70 researchers have a worldwide reputation, winning major international awards and forging relationships with leading institutions including Max Planck.

Professor Graham Hutchings, Director of CCI, said: ‘Students come from across the world to join our internationally excellent doctoral training programme, run in conjunction with the Universities of Bath and Bristol.

‘The new £500,000 laboratory with a range of catalyst screening and testing equipment combines with the high-tech 16-seater seminar room to give our talented doctoral students the spaces they need to grow, and will help us continue to build our reputation as a world-leading institute.’

Professor Colin Riordan, Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University, said: ‘Our investment in the Centre for Doctoral Training demonstrates the value we, as a world-leading research university, place on the work of the Catalysis Institute and its long-term strategic importance. The science of catalysis is at the heart of society. It contributes over £50bn a year to the UK economy by improving health, sharing knowledge, and saving lives.

‘Earlier this year, we announced a new partnership between Professor Hutchings and Professor Robert Schlögl of the Fritz Haber Institute in Berlin on a new programme of catalysis research as part of the Maxnet Energy Network.’

The new Centre for Doctoral Training offers postgraduate training for 12 students studying for a Master of Research degree in Catalysis and Reaction Engineering. Students will develop an advanced knowledge base of catalysis disciplines and an understanding of industry and global contexts to drive and grow the UK catalysis sector. Students register with Cardiff as their ‘home’ university for the first year, but may follow their studies at Bristol or Bath as they choose further options.

For more information, contact Helen Whitfield at

Further information

Principal Investigator, Bristol: Professor Duncan Wass
Principal Investigator, Bath: Dr Pawel Plucinski

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