The Michigan Difference Student Feature-Marimuthu Andiappan
Hometown: Virudhunagar, India
Undergraduate Study: BTech (ChE) Anna University, Chennai, India
Marimuthu (Mari) Andiappan
4th Year Graduate Student
Advisor: Suljo Linic
Why I chose Michigan?
I chose Michigan because the Michigan Engineering graduate program is one of the top ranked programs in the world and a wide range of advanced facilities and research opportunities are available in the university.
My current research at Michigan?
Developing energy efficient, environmentally-friendly chemical transformation processes is of paramount importance for combating dwindling natural resources and growing environmental concerns. Propylene oxide (PO) is an extremely valuable commodity chemical that is still commercially produced using expensive, environmentally-harmful routes, due to the difficulties associated with developing a catalyst that can directly produce PO using oxygen or air as an oxidant. The development of an environmentally-friendly process for producing PO represents a major potential advancement. I have demonstrated that optically excited plasmonic copper catalyst can efficiently harvest visible light and achieve significantly higher selectivity in the direct epoxidation (using O2 as an oxidant) of propylene to form PO and also identified the molecular mechanisms that govern this photocatalytic process. Currently I am focusing on investigating its implications on the family of partial oxidation reactions on other plasmonic metal nanostructures.
What's great about studying here?
The best thing about Michigan is the continuous support I get from people here. The campus is spacious, peaceful, and beautiful and provides a nice environment to study. There are amazing restaurants in the downtown. The bus system is amazing and one can go anywhere around the town for free.