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Invited Speakers

Plenary lectures and Keynotes

The program will consist of plenary lectures, invited lectures and oral communications (45, 30 and 20 min., respectively, including 5 min discussion) as well as a poster session.

The following speakers have kindly accepted the invitation of the organizers to deliver plenary lectures:

  • Mark Kushner, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Michigan Institute for Plasma Science and Engineering, USA

  • Gabriele Centi, Full Professor Industrial Chemistry at the University Messina, Italy

The following speakers have kindly accepted the invitation of the organizers to deliver Keynote lectures:

  • Erik Neyts, Full Professor, Department of Chemistry, University of Antwerp

  • Christopher Hardacre, Vice Dean and Head of the School of Natural Sciences at the University of Manchester, US

  • Nikolay Britun, Associate professor Center for Low-temperature Plasma Sciences at the Nagoya University, Japan

  • Lucia Daniela Pietanza, CNR-Istituto per la Scienza e Tecnologia dei Plasmi (ISTP), Bari, Italy

  • Volker Hessel, Professor, University of Adelaide (School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials), Australia

Mark J. Kushner received the Ph.D. in Applied Physics from the California Institute of Technology.  He joined the University of Illinois in 1986 where he was the Founder Professor of Engineering and served in several administrative roles.  In January 2005, Dr. Kushner joined Iowa State University as Dean of Engineering where he established the Engineering Policy and Leadership Institute.  Prof. Kushner joined the University of Michigan as founding director of the Michigan Institute for Plasma Science and Engineering and George I. Haddad Collegiate Professor in September 2008.  Prof. Kushner’s research area is the fundamentals and applications of low temperature plasmas.  He is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering and recently co-chaired the US National Academies Decadal Study on Plasma Science.

Gabriele Centi is full professor of Industrial Chemistry at the University of Messina, Italy, and President of the European Research Institute of Catalysis (ERIC) and of the International Association of Catalysis Societies (IACS). He has coordinated many EU projects, recently started and coordinated an ERC Synergy grant on plasma-catalysis and is also part of the board of SUNERGY, the European initiative on solar fuels. He chaired the editorial board of ChemSusChem up to 2019 and is co-editor in chief of Journal of Energy Chemistry. Current h-index is 88 with about 32.000 citations (Google Scholar).


Plasma-catalysis to address CO2 utilization challenge in energy-intensive industries

Reuse of CO2 in energy intensive industries (EIIs) is a necessary technology to move to new-zero emission (NZE) targets planned in EU for year 2050, but still a technological challenge. Plasma technology for CO2 conversion offers interesting possibilities in this direction, especially for the possibility of being a full renewable-energy driven process. The lecture will first introduce the issue of closing the C-cycle in EIIs and its role to EU circular economy, addressing then the role of plasma technology in the new scenario for sustainable and low-carbon energy and chemistry. The challenges to overcome the current limitations and to apply plasma technology on a large scale are analysed, with focus on plasma-catalysis aspects. The challenge of CO2 direct conversion to C + O2 is also addressed.

Chris Hardacre is Head of the School of Natural Sciences and a member of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science at the University of Manchester.  He obtained a PhD from Cambridge University in 1994 and moved to Queen’s University, Belfast in 1995 and was appointed as Professor of Physical Chemistry and became Director of Research of the Centre for the Theory and Application for Catalysis in 2003. In 2016, he moved to the University of Manchester.  Through his work in ionic liquids research, he was awarded the Royal Society of Chemistry Encouraging Innovation Award with Merck Chemicals Ltd and was part of the team to win the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Further and Higher Education and in 2013 was the inaugural winner of the IChemE’s Andrew Medal for catalysis.  His group has strong research interests in catalysis and ionic liquids.  Current catalytic projects range from water gas shift and emission control catalysis using thermal and plasma activation to the use of transients to determine gas and liquid phase reaction mechanisms to liquid phase hydrogenations under batch and flow conditions to low temperature fuel cells and clean energy conversion.  His research in ionic liquids includes their use in modifying the properties of heterogeneous catalysts, structural determination of ionic liquids, and species dissolved therein, electrochemistry and prediction of physical properties of ionic liquids.

Lucia Daniela Pietanza received the Master Degree in Physics in 2000 and the PhD in Chemistry of Innovative Materials in 2004 at University of Bari. From 2004-2007, she received several research fellowships at the Chemistry Department of the Bari University and at the Italian National Research Council (CNR) in Bari.

Since 2008, she is a permanent researcher at the CNR in Bari at the Institute for Plasma Science and Technology (ISTP).

Her research activity is focused on the modeling of non-equilibrium plasma kinetics by means of state-to-state models coupled self-consistently with the free electron kinetics. These models were applied to different chemical mixtures such as air, hydrogen-helium and recently to CO2 plasmas for the description of plasma assisted CO2 conversion. She also implemented Collisional-Radiative models for the application to LIBS plasmas and models for describing laser-matter interaction, in particular, for the study of the non-equilibrium electron and phonon dynamics in metals subjected to femtosecond laser pulses.

Nikolay Britun graduated from Kiev National University, Ukraine, in 2002 and received a PhD in plasma diagnostics domain from Sungkyunkwan University, South Korea, in 2008. Afterward, he has spent considerable time working in Belgium, at the “Chimie des Interactions Plasma – Surface” (“Plasma – Surface Interaction Chemistry” Lab.), Mons University, dealing with laser-based diagnostics in the magnetron sputtering, microwave and atmospheric jet discharges. During this time he has also been collaborating with numerous research groups in Belgium, Portugal, Germany, U.K., S. Korea and Japan in the domains of plasma spectroscopy and low-pressure discharges. Currently he is an associate prof. at the Center for Low-temperature Plasma Sciences (Nagoya University, Japan) where his main research interests include optical spectroscopy, laser-based plasma diagnostics of low- and high- pressure discharges and related applications.

Prof. Volker Hessel studied chemistry at Mainz University; PhD 1993. In 1994 he entered the Institut für Mikrotechnik Mainz, Germany (IMM). In 2002, Prof. Hessel was appointed Vice Director R&D at IMM and in 2007 as Director R&D. In 2011, Prof. Hessel was appointed Full Professor at Eindhoven University of Technology, respectively. In 2018, Prof. Hessel was appointed as Deputy Dean (Research) and Full Professor at the University of Adelaide (School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials), Australia. He is the Research Director of Adelaide’s Andy Thomas Centre of Space Resources. He is part-time professor at the University of Warwick/UK (2019-).

Prof. Hessel’s research focuses on new continuous-flow and plasma-catalytic process concepts as well as application thereof in health, chemistry, energy, space, and agrifood. He has published 559 peer-reviewed papers (h-index: 79). He received the AIChE Award “Excellence in Process Development Research” in 2007, IUPAC ThalesNano Prize in Flow Chemistry in 2016, as well as the ERC Advanced, ERC Proof of Concept, ERC Synergy and FET OPEN Grants. He was authority in the 35-man teamed Parliament Enquete Commission “Future of the Chemical Industry” in Nordrhine-Westfalia/Germany. He is expert in the Applied Space Medicine and Life Sciences Technical Advisory Group of the Australian Space Agency.