Academic Profile : Faculty

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Assoc Prof Soo Han Sen
Associate Professor, School of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology
External Links
 
Education
PhD(Chem) University of California, Berkeley 2009
MS(Chem) Massachusetts Institute of Technology 2003
BS(Chem) Massachusetts Institute of Technology 2003

I was born and studied in Singapore up to junior college. I enrolled in Raffles Institution and Raffles Junior College. After receiving a Public Service Commission Overseas Merit Scholarship (Open), I completed my undergraduate studies and received a Bachelor and a Masters of Science in Chemistry from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). I worked for Prof. Christopher Cummins. I pursued my Ph.D. studies in U.C. Berkeley working with Prof. Christopher Chang and moved on to a post-doctoral fellowship with Dr. Heinz Frei at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. I started in SPMS-CBC in July 2012.

The overarching theme of my research program is artificial photosynthesis. I developed a novel and unique form of artificial photosynthesis including original research in the critical functions of light absorption, charge separation, and multielectron reduction and oxidation catalysis. My current interests include the development of molecular photosensitizers and catalysts to harvest sunlight for proton reduction to produce solar fuels and chemicals. My team is also preparing photocatalysts and mesoporous materials derived from earth-abundant elements to valorize biomass lignin and degrade environmental pollutants by ambient condition C-C bond activation. One of our latest breakthroughs is the development of a photocatalytic process to upcycle non-biodegradable polyethylene into formic acid, which can be used in fuel cells.

Patents
1. Soo, H. S.*; Gazi, S.; Dokic, M. PCT application PCT/SG2016/050056, WO 2016/126207 published August 2016, awarded on 6 Oct 2020.
2. Thirumal, K.; Mhaisalkar, S.; Mathews, N.; Soo, H. S. PCT application PCT/SG2018/050344, WO 2019/013709 published January 2019.
The overarching theme of my research program is artificial photosynthesis. I developed a novel and unique form of artificial photosynthesis including original research in the critical functions of light absorption, charge separation, and multielectron reduction and oxidation catalysis. My current interests include the development of molecular photosensitizers and catalysts to harvest sunlight for proton reduction to produce solar fuels and chemicals. My team is also preparing photocatalysts and mesoporous materials derived from earth-abundant elements to valorize biomass lignin and degrade environmental pollutants by ambient condition C-C bond activation. One of our latest breakthroughs is the development of a photocatalytic process to upcycle non-biodegradable polyethylene into formic acid, which can be used in fuel cells.
 
  • Developing a public-private partnership by crowdfunding to create sustainable plastics upcycling technologies
  • Energy-efficient water disinfection by catalysis-assisted sonochemistry
  • High-Throughput Screening of Perovskites for Catalysis by Mechanochemistry and Machine Learning 
  • Improving Photocatalysts That Recycle Microplastics to Fuels by Artificial Intelligence
  • Optimizing Solar-to-Hydrogen Conversion Efficiencies Using Energetically Matched Co-Electrolyses and Inverse Opal 2D Materials
Awards
1) Distinguished Lectureship Award in Electrochemistry, CSJ Asian International Symposium for Outstanding Scientists, 99th Annual Meeting of the Chemical Society of Japan in 2019.
2) School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences Young Researcher Award in 2019.
3) ChemComm Emerging Investigators (Invited for Feature Article) in 2018.
4) Nanyang Education Award (NEA) - School in 2017/2018.
5) APA Prize for Young Scientists 2016 for excellent contributions to “Artificial photosynthesis by light absorption, charge separation, and redox catalysis using only earth-abundant elements”, The Asian and Oceanian Photochemistry Association in 2016.
6) School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences Teaching Excellence Award in 2016/2017.
 
Fellowships & Other Recognition
1) Guest of Honour for the 27th Youth Science Conference & 2022 Science Mentorship Programme Launch.
2) Outstanding Reviewer for Inorganic Chemistry Frontiers in 2019.
 
Courses Taught
1) CM1021 (lectures & tutorials)
2) CM3011
3) CM3021
4) CM5091
5) CM9091
 
Supervision of PhD Students
1) Shao, Hai Yan
2012 - 2017
Supervisor
Photo- and Electro-Catalytic Hydrogen Evolution by Nickel Complexes and DFT Calculations for Photoredox Reactions

2) Lim, Jia Hui
2013 - 2018
Supervisor
Development of (TAML)Iron Complexes for Photocatalytic, Oxidative Water Treatment
Working in a Singaporean start-up company, Archisen, as a Senior Crop Scientist in Singapore

3) Wang, Jingyi
2014 - 2018
Co-Supervisor (Main Supervisor: Dr. Felipe García)
Synthesis and Characterization of Metal Complexes Supported by Bis(Arylimino)Acenaphthene
Working as a Senior Scientist at SABIC, China

4) Dokić, Milos
2014 - 2019
Supervisor
Development of Vanadium Complexes for Selective Photocatalytic Carbon-Carbon Bond Cleavage
Working as a Patent Science in Spruson & Ferguson, Singapore

5) Hong, Zonghan
2014 - 2019
Supervisor
Environmentally Benign and Energy Efficient Synthesis of Metal Halide Perovskites for Photoredox Catalysis, Photoelectric Devices, and Solid-State Characterization of Main Group Materials
Working as a Senior Research & Development Engineer in Contemporary Amperex Technology, China

6) Ng, Leonard Kia-Sheun
2014 - 2019
Supervisor
Characterization and Evaluation of Novel Nano-Structured Bismuth Vanadate and Hybrid Nanomaterials As More Sustainable and Enhanced Photocatalysts in Organic Transformations
Worked as a Chemist in ExxonMobil

7) Ng, Yik Yie
2014 - 2019
Supervisor
Development of Earth-Abundant Copper Photosensitizers for Artificial Photosynthesis
Working as a Scientist in Neo Performance Materials, Singapore

8) Ng, Yun Ru Andrew
2015 - 2020
Supervisor
Photocatalytic and Photoelectrochemical System for Oxidation of Phenolic Compounds in an Aqueous Environment
Working as a Research Scientists in Temasek Lab@NTU, Singapore

9) Bhanupriya Boruah
2015 - 2021
Co-Supervisor (Main Supervisor: Prof. Jayant Modak, IISc)
Development of Visible Active Photocatalysts for Water Remediation from Pathogens and Phenolics
Working as a Archer Daniels Midland Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Kansas, USA