Uli was born in Würzburg (the birthplace of W. Heisenberg and where W. C. Röntgen discovered X-rays in 1895) but grew up in Iphofen, a small village in the Franconian countryside. After finishing highschool in Kitzingen, he moved back to the city at the river Main to study Chemistry at the Julius-Maximilians University of Würzburg in 2002.
After obtaining his 'pre-diploma' (BSc) in 2004 he enrolled in a double-diploma curriculum in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering between the University of Würzburg and the École Supérieure de Chimie, Physique et Électronique de Lyon. From 2005 to 2007 he studied reaction engineering, catalysis and materials chemistry at CPE, UCBL I, and ENS in Lyon.
Interested in ionic liquids for organometallic chemistry and catalysis at the time, he did a research project in the group of Catherine Santini in 2006 which brought him into contact with Yves Chauvin and David Cole-Hamilton. This led to his master thesis project with David at the University of St Andrews, where he first worked with supercritical CO2 and flow chemistry. In 2007 he graduated with degrees in Chemistry and Engineering from Würzburg and Lyon, respectively.
After completion of his undergraduate studies, Uli went to RWTH Aachen University for a PhD with Walter Leitner at the ITMC. Supported by a Kekulé fellowship of the FCI, he worked on asymmetric catalysis in continuous flow using supported ionic liquids and supercritical fluids, CO2 hydrogenation, and some recreational phosphorus and NHC chemistry. In 2010 he won the Silver Medal at the 3rd European Young Chemist Awards and graduated summa cum laude.
In 2011 he went to the US for a PostDoc with Bob Crabtree at Yale University as Feodor Lynen Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Working on iridium complexes for water and C-H oxidation and hydrogen transfer catalysis, he started to develop an affection for physico-chemical and in-situ analytical methods for elucidating reaction mechanisms in catalysis. His daughter Stella was born in New Haven in 2012.
In 2013 he moved to the University of Bath to take up a Whorrod Research Fellowship at the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies, which allowed him to build an independent research group across the Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering. In 2016 he established Bath's Dynamic Reaction Monitoring (DReaM) Facility for operando studies of homogeneous catalysis. In 2017 he was awarded a Royal Society Research Fellowship to launch a new research program into dinuclear metal complexes and electroactive ligand architectures for cooperative catalysis. In 2019 he was promoted to Reader (Associate Professor) in Chemistry at Bath.
Awards & Honors:
• 2021 Jochen Block Prize of the German Catalysis Society, DECHEMA
• 2018 Inorganic Reaction Mechanisms Young Academic Award, Royal Society of Chemistry
• 2017 University Research Fellowship of the Royal Society
• 2016 Sir John Meurig Thomas Medal of the UK Catalysis Hub
• 2016 Willi Keim Prize of the ProcessNet Advanced Fluids Subject Division, DECHEMA
• 2015 Shortlisted for the Global Energy Award of IChemE (with Catalytic Innovations LLC)
• 2013 Whorrod Fellowship of the University of Bath
• 2011 Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
• 2011 Borchers Badge of the RWTH Aachen for “excellence in the dissertation”
• 2010 Silver Medal at the 3rd European Young Chemist Awards (PhD level)
• 2009 Invitee to the 59th Nobel Laureate Meeting, Lindau
• 2008 Kekulé Scholarship of the Fonds der Chemischen Industrie
• 2005 DFH/UFA stipend and SOKRATES grant for intereuropean studies
Member of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the German Chemical Society (GDCh), the Association of German Engineers (VDI), the German Catalysis Society (GeCatS), German Society for Industrial Chemistry (DECHEMA), the UK’s Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) and the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE).
Scientific peer reviewer for a range of inorganic chemistry, materials and catalysis journals - see:
Chief Scientific Advisor of Catalytic Innovations Inc.
Founder and Scientific Director of Bath’s Dynamic Reaction Monitoring (DReaM) Facility.
Steering group member of the UK Catalysis Hub.
Committee member of the Inorganic Reaction Mechanisms Group of the RSC.
To date Uli has presented at >40 national and international conferences and meetings, and given >20 invited seminars for various Universities and industries. Stay tuned what's up next by following us on Twitter:
Uli is a Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy and curently teaches on the following courses:
CH10009: Foundation Labs
CH10133 & CH20147: Inorganic Chemistry tutorials
CH30129: Organic and Inorganic Aspects of Homogeneous Catalysis
CE50175: Industrial Catalytic Processes