Marie Brands

PhD candidate
University of Amsterdam

About myself

I grew up in Lambertschaag, which is a tiny village in the northwest of the Netherlands. My hobbies include various sports such as running, swimming, spinning and playing tennis. In my free time I love cooking (with friends), walking around Amsterdam, being in nature and reading books.

At the moment I work on

In September 2018 I started as a PhD student within CBBC under the supervision of prof. Joost Reek (University of Amsterdam). The project we work on is in collaboration with prof. Guido Mul (University of Twente), Kaijian Zhu (University of Twente) and Shell. The final goal of the project is to develop a selective, stable and cheap photocathode for proton reduction and CO2 reduction. In order to achieve this goal, I will focus on designing and synthesizing molecular photosensitizers and proton/CO2 reduction catalysts. These dyes and catalysts will be immobilized on a semiconductor, to hopefully obtain efficient photocathodes.

As a researcher I am passionate about

I wanted to become a researcher because I get a lot of energy from solving puzzles and learning new skills and theories. Moreover, discussion with colleagues about the research that they are doing or that I am doing is motivating and a lot of fun. I’m passionate about creating a sustainable future, which is why I’m  very happy to work in this field of chemistry.

Within ARC CBBC, I wish to accomplish

The possibilities that are created by ARC CBBC for collaboration between different fields of chemistry are unique and I appreciate this a lot. It is very interesting and insightful to discuss about the various topics within ARC CBBC with researchers that have different backgrounds. Ideally, it would be amazing if we could develop a photocathode that is so efficient that it becomes interesting to look into practical applications or devices for the production of hydrogen or CO2-derived chemicals.