Research group


Our research aim is the rational improvement and design of heterogeneous catalysts and catalytic processes in order to minimize the energy usage and the damage of such processes on environment while achieving high product yield and selectivity. We take a multi-disciplinary approach based on material science, reaction engineering, and in situ spectroscopy to gain solid comprehension of the active sites and the transformation pathways. Currently our major attention is given to the conversion of CO2 into fuels and useful chemicals. Also, powerful in situ spectroscopic tools for studying solid materials and gas-solid and solid-liquid interfaces are being developed and applied to shed light on catalytic reaction mechanisms. 

Topics addressed

  • Catalytic CO2 conversion
  • Continuous high pressure catalytic CO2 conversion
  • Heterogeneous photo- and electrocatalytic CO2 reduction


“Modulation Enhanced Diffraction: Theory and Applications”
ACA Transactions (2013) 137-148
R. Caliandro, D. Chernyshov, H. Emerich, W. van Beek, M. Milanesio, L. Palin, D. Viterbo, A. Urakawa

“Impact of K and Ba promoters on CO2 hydrogenation over Cu/Al2O3 catalysts at high pressure”
Catal. Sci. Technol. (2013) 3, 767–778
A. Bansode, B. Tidona, P. Rudolf von Rohr, A. Urakawa

“High pressure plant for heterogeneous catalytic CO2 hydrogenation reactions in a continuous flow microreactor”
Chem. Eng. Process(2013) 65, 53-57
B. Tidona, A. Urakawa, P. Rudolf von Rohr

“CO2 hydrogenation to methanol at pressures up to 950 bar”
J. Supercrit. Fluids (2013) 78, 70-77
B. Tidona, C. Koppold, A. Bansode, A. Urakawa, P. Rudolf von Rohr

“H2O/D2O exchange in the presence of CO over SnO2 nanomaterials: operando DRIFTS and resistance study for gas sensor applications”
Proc. SPIE (2013) 8811, 881106

“Origin of Photocatalytic Activity in Continuous Gas Phase CO2 Reduction over Pt/TiO2
ChemSusChem (2013) 6, 2095–2102
A. Bazzo, A. Urakawa