Research Directions

What we do in the Laboratory

- the "de Ruiter" Research Group -

Our Research

Homogeneous Catalysis with Base Metals

Our group is  interested in the organometallic chemistry of first-row transition metals in particular those containing redox-active ligands. These ligands supplement the redox-activity of the metal by donating additional electrons to confer "noble metal"reactivity to cheap and earth abundant metals such as Fe, Co, Mn, and Ni. The reactivity of these metal are subsequently evaluated for various organic transformations the hydrofunctionalization of alkynes, alkenes, nitriles, esters, and amides.

Organometallic and Bioinorganic Chemistry

Over the past decades, nature has served as a great source of inspiration for developing metal complexes capable of activating strong-bonds. Frequently earth-abundant metals are used to activate specific C-H and C-C bonds. In our group we are developing novel earth-abundant metal complexes based on a unique pincer type geometry containing a N-Heterocyclic Carbene. The functionalized NHC provides a strong ligand field resulting in unique reactivity of these complexes in isomerization, hydrogen isotope exchange, and hydrogenation catalysis.

Supramolecular Surface Chemistry

Our group is also interested in organometallic (surface) chemistry and the design and synthesis of hybrid inorganic materials for energy conversion and catalysis. The main mode of action relies on the self-assembly of inorganic building blocks into complex architectures with interesting physicochemical properties. These materials will be used in a variety of projects that include:

  • Electro-Catalysis

  • Solar Energy Conversion

  • Small Molecule Activation