BSc Chemistry and Polymer Science Stellenbosch University
MSc Chemistry and Polymer Science Stellenbosch University
PhD Chemistry and Polymer Science Stellenbosch University
Overview/ Research interests
Our research is focussed on the valorization of low-value hydrocarbons, including alkanes and alkenes. South Africa produces a large excess of these low value feedstocks in processes such as the Fischer-Tropsch synthesis. These compounds are relatively inert to further derivatization and are therefore mostly employed as either cheap fuels or solvents.
In this project we investigate the mild and selective oxidation of hydrocarbons to more valuable oxygenates using a combination of heterogeneous- and biocatalysis in a tandem process. Of paramount importance to this process is the in-situ generation and subsequent delivery of green oxidants (e.g. H2O2) to biocatalysts such as unspecific peroxygenases (UPO’S) capable of directly using peroxides as electron donor to drive the enzymatic oxidation reaction.
The Department of Chemical Engineering is part of the Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment (EBE) at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.