Reisner Lab

           Department of Chemistry
           University of Cambridge
           Lensfield Road, Cambridge CB2 1EW, UK
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Welcome to our group website!

Group Picture
(St John´s College, Cambridge, November 2016)

Introductory movies about our work and group can be found here: Video 1 and Video 2

We are interested in applying principles from the traditional field of Biological Inorganic Chemistry to Renewable Energy research. We design artificial photosynthetic systems to produce a so-called solar fuel - a sustainable fuel derived from solar energy and an effectively inexhaustible raw material. A major goal is to mimic photobiological energy generation by hybridizing enzymes and biomimetic synthetic compounds with nanostructured materials. To achieve this aim, a solar light-harvesting component is coupled to a suitable redox catalyst to drive the energetically uphill redox transformations.

A current focus lies on ththe photocatalytic production of the high specific energy carrier hydrogen from water and we have started to explore novel routes of converting the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into valuable carbon feedstocks. We pay particular attention to solar syngas generation, which would allow us to access a sustainable carbon-based economy. Our laboratory and department house state-of-the-art facilities for our work, which covers a wide range of disciplines - from anaerobic Synthetic to Biological Chemistry, with an emphasis somewhere at the Interface of Inorganic Chemistry, Enzymology, Electro-, Photochemistry, and Materials Chemistry.

We are part of three research interest groups in the department of Chemistry (Materials, Synthesis, Chemical Biology) and collaborate with other departments at Cambridge and universities in the UK, EU and USA. The group also houses the Christian Doppler Laboratory for Sustainable SynGas Chemistry.
© webmaster, 2009-2017.

What's new?

June 2017. Both of our Part III students (Tim and Satowa) graduate with 1st class degrees. Erwin promoted to Professor. Will's paper in collaboration with Judy Hirst's group on 'FDH mechanism' accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper).

May 2017. Janina, Georgina and Will  defend their PhD theses on 'semiconductor immobilised Co catalysts', 'carbon nanodot photocatalysis' and 'formate dehydrogenase electrochemistry', respectively. Nina Heidary joins the group as a postdoc. Demelza Wright and Taylor Uekert join the group as nanoDTC midi-students. Kasia wins the 2nd prize in the Natural & Life Sciences category at the ABTA 2017 Doctoral Researcher Awards. Jane and Julien's paper on 'molecular Si photocathode' accepted in Chem. Sci. (to paper). Georgina and Ben's 'carbon nanodot' review accepted in Chem. Soc. Rev. Moritz and Katherine's paper on 'CdS-catalyst hybrid for CO2 reduction' accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper).

April 2017. Esther Moore and Melanie Miller join the group as PhD students. Ben's paper on 'N-doped carbon dots' accepted in Angew. Chem. (to paper). Micaela's review on 'electrode protection' accepted in Energy Environ. Sci. (to paper). Collaborative paper with the Jeuken and Butt groups and Katherine's contribution on 'nanoparticle:cytochrome photoanodes' accepted in ChemElectroChem (to paper). Erwin receives International Award for Creative Chemistry from Japan Society of Coordination Chemistry. Georgina wins 1st poster prize at the 'Materials for Solar Energy Conversion' meeting in London.

March 2017. David and Moritz' work on 'photoreforming of biomass' patented and published in Nature Energy (to paper). A movie highlight about the biomass work by Reuters appears online (to movie). Tim's perspective on 'spectroscopy of immobilised fuel-forming catalysts' accepted in ACS Catalysis (to paper).

Februrary 2017. Julien and Janina's paper on 'organic dye-sensitised semiconductor photocatalysis' accepted in Chem. Sci. (to paper). Bertrand's paper on 'H2O2 Reduction with a Decaheme Cytochrom" accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper).

January 2017. Constantin rejoins the group as a PhD student. Julian Vigil receives Churchill scholarship (link). Souvik Roy and Shafeer Kalathil receive Marie Curie Fellowships. Moritz wins prize for best talk at 5th UK Solar Fuels Network symposium in Newcastle. Erwin becomes new director of UK Solar Fuels Network (link).

December 2016. Nick appointed as Research Associate at Corpus Christi College. Virgil wins prize for the best peer-to-peer presentation in the Department of Chemistry. Collaborative paper on 'photocatalysis with TiO2 as reversible electron acceptor' with Leif Hammarström's group and Chris' contribution  accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper).

2016. David and Tim defend their PhD theses on 'O2-tolerant and biomass photocatalysis' and 'molecule-driven PEC cells', respectively. Tim will start as a JSPS postdoc fellow at the University of Tokyo and David postdoc at College de France in Paris soon. Jane and Hatice win runner-up prizes for their talks at the BP Day in the Department of Chemistry. Andreas receives Cambridge nanoDTC associate award. Georgina's paper on 'carbon dot-enzyme photocatalysis' accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper). Hatice's collaborative paper with the Lotsch and Jeschke groups on 'dark photocatalysis' accepted in Angew. Chem. as VIP paper (to paper).

October 2016. Ben defends his PhD thesis on 'carbon nanodots for photo-H2 generation' and will start as a postdoc at Harvard University soon. Mark receives Endeavour Scholarship from the Maltese Ministry for Education, co-financed by the EU. Karol joins the group as a postdoc, Virgil, Arjun and Daniel as PhD students, Sarah Lamaison as MPhil student, Franziska Nousch and Dominik Wielend as Erasmus students, and Satowa Kinoshita and Tim Boyd as Part III students. We receive new laboratory and office space for our work on photocatalysis.
2016. Nick Kornienko receives a Royal Society Newton postdoctoral Fellowship and joins the group. Collaborative paper with the Butt and Jeuken groups and Tsubasa's contribution on 'photo-reduction of Extracellular Cytochromes from Shewanella oneidensis' accepted in ChemBioChem (to paper).

August 2016. Jenny's paper on 'new electron-transfer pathways in Photosystem II' accepted in Nature Chem. Biol. (to paper).

July 2016. Jamues defends his MPhil thesis on 'dye-sensitised semiconductor photocatalysis'. Christian Doppler Lectures take place in Cambridge. Kasia's paper on 'benchmark PSII photoelectrode' accepted in Energy Environ. Sci. (to paper). Micaela's paper on 'photo-H2 production with perovskite electrode' accepted in Nature Commun. (to paper).

June 2016.
Tim wins the poster prize at the 'Pathways to Solar Hydrogen Technology' conference in Leiden. Tom awarded 'Johnson Matthey Prize' for best Part III project in Inorganic Chemistry. Cambridge Contemporary Dance releases a video inspired by the group's research, which was premiered alongside Erwin's Pint of Science talk - here. Doppler Lab highlighted by OMV's CEO Rainer Seele - here. Tarek's paper on 'noble-free CGIS photo-H2" accepted in Catal. Sci. Technol. (to paper). Ben's paper on 'stable carbon dot photocatalysis via donor recycling' accepted in Angew. Chem. (to paper). Hatice's paper on 'simultaneous solar fuel and chemical synthesis' accepted in J. Am. Chem. Soc. (to paper).

May 2016. Manuela defends her PhD thesis on 'photo-H2 generation with a phosphonated Ni bis(diphosphine) catalyst'. Virgil Andrei (Vice-Chancellor Award and honorary Winton scholar), Arjun Vijeta (Ramanujan Award)  and Daniel Anton Garcia (DTA award) receive PhD scholarships and will join us in autumn. Lee and Bertrand's paper on 'electrochemistry with protein-enzyme assembly' accepted in Chem. Commun. (to paper). Manuela's paper on 'molecular photocathode' accepted in Chem. Sci. (to paper).

April 2016. Andreas Wagner arrives as a PhD student. Georgina and Ben win the poster prize at the 'Polymer Photocatalysts for Solar Fuels Synthesis' workshop at University College London (to website announcement). Kasia wins best poster prize at '79th Harden Conference on Oxygen Evolution and Reduction'. LEGO movie on artificial photosynthesis made by David and Chris released on youtube  (watch here).

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