16. 06. 2024

Soichiro Nakatsuka to reinforce the MEL research team

Chemical modifications of nanomaterials, especially carbon nanostructures such as graphene or carbon nanotubes for use in catalysis and electrochemistry, will be the focus of a new scientific asset to the Materials-Envi Lab at the CEET’s Nanotechnology Centre. Soichiro Nakatsuka holds a doctoral degree from Kwansei Gakuin University and came to Ostrava from Japan to be involved in the REFRESH and Glas-A-Fuels projects, among others.

“My main research topic is the atomically precise multiple heteroatomic substitution of nanocarbons. I use the Schlenk techniques, which are necessary for handling air- and moisture-sensitive compounds and allow chemical reactions to be carried out safely in an inert atmosphere. In MEL, I will perform organic syntheses of functionalized graphene derivatives and/or bottom-up syntheses of small molecules that resemble graphene fragments for their application in catalysis and electrochemistry,” said Nakatsuka.

He admits that he dealt with a number of questions before accepting his new post. “I had a lot of discussions with the team leader Aristeidis Bakandritsos and I have to say that all my concerns were allayed. Needless to say, lableader is Professor Radek Zbořil, who is a renowned researcher, and I thus got an opportunity to work with outstanding people. So who would turn down such an offer? I decided to leave Japan with my wife and accept this challenge,” added the chemist.

Despite his youth, Dr. Nakatsuka has published numerous significant papers that have already garnered over 3,000 citations. His discoveries in the fields of organic chemistry and materials research have been published in the world’s most prestigious journals, including the Journal of the American Chemical Society, Angewandte Chemie, and Advanced Materials.Nakatsuka is another promising young researcher who comes to VSB-TUO thanks to the REFRESH project. But he will also be involved in the international Glas-A-Fuels project awarded by the European Research Council, which aims to develop new generation biofuels.