George Hermens

PhD candidate
University of Groningen

About myself

I was born and raised in Groningen (The Netherlands), the Metropolis of the North. I received my BSc and MSc in chemistry at the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen and joined the ARC CBBC program in 2018 as a PhD student in the group of Ben Feringa. My hobbies include soccer, fitness and traveling.

As a researcher I am passionate about

I am passionate about the field of chemistry I work in. In the field of polymer chemistry and especially when collaborating with an industrial partner, the products you synthesize are much closer to real applications. Moreover these projects regarding developing alternatives contribute to a more sustainable future, motivating me and cause me to be proud of what I’m working on.

At the moment I work on

In 2018, I started my journey of developing biobased coatings in a joint project between the University of Groningen and AkzoNobel. Acrylates, one of the most well-known monomers used in the production of coatings, are being produced industrially from fossil fuels, which results in large amounts of CO2 and greenhouse gas emission in the atmosphere. Aside from that fossil fuels are a finite source, of which the consumption is growing non-stop. The goal of this project is to find and develop biomass derived monomers that can be used as acrylate alternatives in the production of polymers and coatings. I am currently working on the sustainable synthesis of novel biobased monomers, the upscaling of the reactions and the production of new polymers and coatings.

Within ARC CBBC, I wish to accomplish

The ARC CBBC creates unique opportunities in research by being the bridge between industry and academia. Therefore I found that research can be accelerated due to the combined forces. Within ARC CBBC, I wish to develop a sustainable product that is useful for industry and helps to strive towards a better future.