Zhijie Chen, Ph.D. Graduate – An amazing Journey

Mar 08 2018

Zhijie Chen successfully defended his Ph.D. dissertation on March 1, 2018. His thesis entitled " Reticular Chemistry for the Highly Connected Porous Crystalline Frameworks and Their Potential Applications" was well received by committee members Profs.  Xixiang Zhang (KAUST), Yu Han (KAUST) and Leonard J. Barbour (University of Stellenbosch).
“The focus of my thesis is to develop and apply reticular chemistry for the design and synthesis of porous crystalline frameworks such as MOFs, and explore their potential for gas storage and separation applications”, explains Chen.

Chen completed a Bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) in Shanghai, China, in 2012 prior joining KAUST as a Ph.D. student under the supervision of Prof. Mohamed Eddaoudi, leader of the FMD3 research group and the director of the AMPM Center. Chen notes that the research programs offered at KAUST and the world renowned caliber of the KAUST faculty coupled with University’s unparalleled facilities were the main drivers for him to choose Prof. Eddaoudi’s research group in particular and KAUST in general for his graduate studies.  
Prof. Eddaoudi adds that “Chen is an outstanding graduate student that developed the requisites for a respected scientist; namely he comprehends the challenging ideas with a critical mind and puts all the needed efforts to translate into reality; I have no doubt in my mind that Chen is up to good start to have a great career as researcher”.
His hard work, effort, and dedication during these five years have resulted in the publication of eight papers in high-impact journals as JACS and Nature Comm. Furthermore, he was awarded the Faraday Division Poster Prize at the Royal Society of Chemistry Faraday Discussion, Edinburgh (UK) in June 2017.
“I am really grateful to my esteemed mentor Prof. Eddaoudi for his generous support, creative thinking and motivation.  I have to thank my former and current colleagues and friends from the FMD3 lab for their kind assistance, advice and guidance during my Ph.D. studies stay at KAUST. Special thanks to Dr. Youssef Belmabkhout who enriched my learning on the adsorption field”, he concludes.
Chen defines his Ph.D. stage as “an amazing and memorable journey”. Within a few months, he will leave KAUST to continue his research career as a Postdoctoral researcher at Northwestern University. 
AMPM Center congratulates Dr. Zhijie Chen on a well-done Ph.D. research studies and a well-deserved Ph.D. degree thesis. Keep the momentum going and wishing you the best!