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Aditya Bhan

Aditya Bhan


Associate Professor

Phone: 612-626-3981

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  • Postdoc, Chemical Engineering, UC Berkeley 2005-2007
  • Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Purdue University, 2005
  • B.Tech. Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, 2000


  • US Department of Energy Early Career Award, 2012
  • NSF CAREER Award, 2011
  • McKnight Land Grant Assistant Professor, 2011-2013
  • College of Science and Engineering Outstanding Teacher Award, 2011
  • 3M Non-tenured Faculty Award, 2011-2013

Research Areas

Catalytic science will play a critical role in developing alternative energy sources and new conversion technologies for the 21st century. Our goal is to develop catalytic technologies that solve a key piece of this challenge by efficiently controlling hydrocarbon-based reaction pathways important in energy conversion and use, chemical synthesis, and environmental control. With these goals in mind our research focuses on developing new catalytic conversion technologies for renewable biomass-derived feedstocks and activation of light alkanes that are major constituents of natural gas.

The functional characterization of reactivity is accomplished by isotopic tracer and transient studies, chemical transient methods, and steady-state kinetic measurements to determine the evolution of surface species and reaction intermediates prevalent under reaction conditions. These kinetics and mechanistic studies are complemented by general structural and chemical characterization studies using X-ray diffraction, electron microscopy, porosity measurements, thermal analysis techniques and infrared and NMR spectroscopies. In intimate collaboration with these experimental studies, computational studies using Density Functional Theory (DFT) are done to examine molecule-surface interactions and chemical rearrangements relevant for these chemistries.

Our integrated experimental/ theoretical approach lies at the crossroads of materials synthesis, computational catalysis and catalytic chemistry and aims to advance our ability to understand, design and control chemical transformations using catalysis.

Selected Publications

  • Rachit Khare; Dean Millar; Aditya Bhan; “A mechanistic basis for the effects of crystallite size on light olefin selectivity in methanol to hydrocarbons conversion in MFI” Journal of Catalysis 321 (2015) 23-31.
  • Minje Kang; Joseph DeWilde; Aditya Bhan; “Kinetics and mechanism of alcohol dehydration on γ-Al2O3: Effects of carbon chain length and substitution” ACS Catalysis 5 (2015) 602-612.
  • Wen-Sheng Lee; Zhenshu Wang; Ryan Wu; Aditya Bhan; “Selective vapor phase hydrodeoxygenation of anisole to benzene on molybdenum carbide catalysts” Journal of Catalysis 319 (2014) 44-53.
  • Samia Ilias; Aditya Bhan; “The mechanism of aromatic dealkylation in methanol to hydrocarbons conversion on H-ZSM-5: What are the aromatic precursors to light olefins?” Journal of Catalysis 311 (2014) 6-16
  • Srinivas Rangarajan; Robert Brydon; Aditya Bhan; Prodromos Daoutidis; “Automated identification of energetically feasible mechanisms for complex reaction networks on heterogeneous catalysts: Application to glycerol conversion on transition metals” Green Chemistry 16 (2014) 813-823
  • Samia Ilias; Aditya Bhan; “The mechanism of the catalytic conversion of methanol-to-hydrocarbons.” ACS Catalysis 3 (2013) 18-31.
  • Jeremy Bedard; Do-Young Hong; Aditya Bhan; “CH4 dehydroaromatization on Mo/H-ZSM-5: 1.Effects of co-processing H2 and CH3COOH.” Journal of Catalysis 306 (2013) 58-67
  • Mark N. Mazar; Saleh Al-Hashimi; Matteo Cococcioni; Aditya Bhan; “β-scission of Olefins: A Periodic PBE+D study in MFI” Journal of Physical Chemistry C 117 (2013) 23609-23620
  • Samia Ilias; Rachit Khare; Andre Malek; Aditya Bhan; “A descriptor for the relative propagation of the aromatic- and olefin-based cycles in methanol-to-hydrocarbons conversion on HZSM-5.” Journal of Catalysis 303 (2013) 135.
  • Xueyi Zhang; Dongxia Liu; Shunsuke Asahina; Katie Cychosz; Kumar Varoon; Yasser Al Wahedi; Aditya Bhan; Saleh Al Hashimi; Osamu Terasaki; Matthias Thommes; Michael Tsapatsis; “Direct synthesis of a self-pillared single unit cell zeolite.” Science 336 (2012) 1684-1687.
  • Joseph DeWilde; Hsu Chiang; Daniel A. Hickman; Christopher Ho; Aditya Bhan; “Kinetics and mechanism of ethanol dehydration on gamma-Al2O3: The critical role of dimer inhibition.” ACS Catalysis 3 (2013) 798-807.