Hui-Fang Zhu is a multi-award-winning scientist of enormous promise and potential. She has an excellent record of achievement in coordination chemistry, and her work is certainly of the highest international quality. She now wishes to build upon and apply her impressive array of scientific skills to an ambitious and innovative project to develop new ecomaterials as catalysts for the binding and activation of hydrogen using designed metal thiolate complexes that will mimic hydrogenase enzymes that activate hydrogen in vivo. The Fellowship will give invaluable research training and knowledge transfer, and will afford further collaborations with industry and other research groups in the UK and Germany. The scientific and technological imperative for this research is derived from the urgent societal, environmental and economic need to develop new methodologies and technologies to control the use of hydrogen as a clean and efficient fuel, and to understand the molecular and red-ox chemistry taking place at hydrogenase bio-sites, which are highly efficient biocatalysts for hydrogen activation. The work programme meets the priorities under the FP6 Call on Knowledge-based Multifunctional Materials, NMP-2002-220.127.116.11-1 and on Sustainable Development, SUSTDEV-1.2.2. State-of-the-art facilities at Nottingham will underpin the Fellowship both scientifically and intellectually in a stimulating and multi-disciplinary environment (Marie Curie Host Fellowship Centre COSMIC MCFH-2001-00448). The Fellowship will also exploit the wider University of Nottingham Career Development programme and the Royal Society of Chemistry 1-year formal assessment programme, which provide a range of invaluable managerial and leadership skills for young scientists. The potential impact of the project is very high, and after the applicant's return to China, she will use her new skills and expertise as an independent academic and researcher to spread excellence in training and research.
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