Research topics

My general research interest is in the fabrication of micro and nanostructures, applicable in the fields of chemistry and sustainable. This includes:

Microfluidic chips and systems for chemical analysis and synthesis

NMR, HPLC, GC, IR on a chip

Microreactors, with integrated tools for analysis (sensors and spectroscopic elements, such as ATR-IR) and activation (e.g. field electron emission elements for hydrogenation)

Nanostructures for solar energy harvesting, (photo)electrochemistry and (photo)catalysis

Nanostructured surfaces for solar light harvesting and (photo)electrochemistry

Chemical Reaction Engineering by Additive Manufacturing of Mesoscale MetaMaterials - CREAM4

In 2017, I was awarded an ERC Advanced Grant on the topic of additive manufacturing of mesoscale metamaterials for chemical reaction engineering, with the acronym "CREAM4". A summary of the research planned in this program is as follows:

The management of mesoscale dynamics is the missing link in gaining complete control over chemical processes like heterogeneous catalysis. The ability to accurately position nanoscale active elements in cellular mesoscale (nm to ┬Ám-range) structures with high symmetrical order is instrumental in streamlining vital molecular or energetic paths. 3D periodicity in the structure that supports active or adsorption sites minimizes spatial variations in mass transport, whereas mesoscale control of the location of these sites gives a route to tuning activity and functionality. The introduction of mesoscale metamaterials expands the on-going trend in chemistry, of more and more dimensionally refined structured elements, a so to speak "Moore's law in Process Intensification". The roadmap to higher process efficiency dictates a next, disruptive step in mastering manufacturing control at smaller dimensions. The proposed disruptive technology to realize the required mesoscale features is Additive Manufacturing, which is the only method offering the desired freedom in shape, symmetry and composition. More specifically, this project explores electrospinning methods with precise intra-wire control of the position of active sites and accurately tuneable 3D inter-wire distances. This is seen as the ideal technique to reach the mesoscale material target, as the method is scalable to practical device volumes. The main ingredients of the novel technology are microfluidic networks to line up nanoparticles, before electrospinning them with integrated micromachined nozzles, and depositing them accurately in the form of 3D nanowire networks, using integrated circuit collector electrodes. Flow-through, cellular materials which are highly homogeneous in size and composition, or with intentionally embedded gradients, having features designed at the mesoscale, will be investigated for applications in the fields of heterogeneous catalysis and solar energy capture and conversion


Since November 2006: Head of personal research chair "Mesoscale Chemical Systems", with an appointment as Full Professor at the Faculty of Science and Technology on January 1, 2007.

2006- 2011: Director of Strategic Research Programme "Mesofluidics", MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology, The Netherlands

2003- 2005: Associate Professor, BIOS - Lab-on-a-Chip group, University of Twente, The Netherlands. Activities: Research and teaching of topics related to microfabricated microfluidic systems to study and control (bio)chemical reactions.

2003- 2004: (Part-Time) Project manager NanoLab, MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology, The Netherlands. Activities: planning and design new clean room facilities.

2001- 2003: R&D manager, Micronit Microfluidics B.V., Enschede, The Netherlands.
Activities: development and test of lab-on-a-chip systems for biomedical and chemical analysis, responsible for IPR, R&D funding and (international) collaboration, and coaching and education of technical employees.

2001 Project leader MEMS & Line manager MEMS Production, Kymata Ltd. / Alcatel Optronics, Livingston, United Kingdom & Enschede, The Netherlands.
Activities: Management of projects related to integrated planar waveguide optics and MEMS; Management of small-volume MEMS production line.

May-Aug. 1995 Sabbatical leave, Integrated Microsystems Lab., Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh PA, USA.

1994-1995: visiting researcher at University College of London (with prof. I.W. Boyd)
Research topic: PLD of ZnO and PZT films for piezoelectric and optical applications.

1990-2001 Assistant professor, Transducer Science and Technology Group, University of Twente, The Netherlands.
Activities: Research and teaching of topics related to materials science and microfabrication of MEMS and microfluidic systems for chemical synthesis and analysis

1985-1990 Ph.D. Experimental Solid State Physics, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands
Research topic: Fundamental aspects of semiconductor CVD (with prof. L.J. Giling)

1982-1985 M.Sc. Chemistry, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
Research topics: Crystallisation of hydrogen phthalate from aqueous solutions (with prof. P. Bennema); Solid-state NMR-study on pure and oxidised polyacetylene (with prof. W.S. Veeman), 2D-NMR study on DNA-binding proteins & Binding kinetics of tRNA by stopped-flow techniques (with prof. C.W. Hilbers); Separation of enantiomers by directed crystallization (with TNO Apeldoorn)

1979-1982 B.Sc. Chemistry with physics and mathematics, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

1973-1979 Gymnasium-B, St. Janslyceum, Hoensbroek, The Netherlands.

October 15, 1960 Born in Valkenburg a/d Geul, The Netherlands