Take a virtual tour of the center

Three miles west of KU's main campus (with free parking) sits CEBC's headquarters, with 21,700 sq. ft. of laboratory and office space.

The CEBC is a designated KU Center of Excellence and its headquarters are located just 3 miles west of KU’s main campus, occupying approximately 21,700 sq. ft. of modern laboratory and office space (12,150 research labs; 7,000 offices; 2,550 shared/collaboration space). The labs are managed by CEBC’s full-time Laboratory Director.

The CEBC headquarters are complemented by the myriad facilities on KU's campus in LEEP2 (engineering) and Gray Little Hall (chemistry), as well as university Core Laboratories.

CEBC laboratories feature state-of-the-art instrumentation for catalysis and reaction engineering research. CEBC equipment is available for collaborative center activities and for industry-sponsored projects. Some of the capabilities are highlighted below.


  • High-pressure reactors operational from 15 to 200 bars of pressure and at temperatures up to 300 °C for volumes from 5 to 300 milliliters 

  • 3 fixed-bed/trickle-bed reactors for catalyst or process studies 

  • Batch and continuous reactors for ozonolysis reactions in liquid carbon dioxide, including automated safety shutdown sequences 

  • 8 stirred pressure reactors made by Parr Instrument Co and equipped with HPLC and/or ISCO syringe pumps and Mass Flow Controllers that allow programmable addition of liquids and gases to the reactor and back-pressure regulators for pressure control, with on-line gas chromatography sampling and off-line HPLC systems are integral parts of most systems 

  • Customized reactor cell for performing electrochemical CO2 reduction in CO2-expanded electrolytes 

  • A parallel high-pressure reactor (6 reactors) system: 100 mL capacity each (MOC- Hastelloy C-276 and Ti), 150 bar pressure and 300 °C 

  • Three 50 mL continuous high-pressure stirred membrane reactors that enable retention of high molecular weight catalysts (such as polymer-bound homogeneous catalyst complexes) in dissolved form in reaction mixtures; and unique 4L titanium spray oxidation reactor for semi-batch or continuous operation, with high-temperature product collection vessel and continuous off-gas analyzers

  • A high-temperature fluidized bed reactor

  • Two continuous spray reactors; one made of titanium for mid-century type chemistry, one made of glass for oxidation/ozonation chemistry 

  • Three ReactIR (Mettler Toledo) reaction systems (with 50 mL stirred Parr reactors) that can be run in batch or continuous mode, and equipped with ATR-IR probes (silicon windows) for time-resolved in-situ collection of mid-IR spectra of reaction mixtures at high pressures (up to 1500 psi).      

  • Two Ocean Optan ics UV-visible spectrophotometers with fiber-optic probes that can be interfaced with the high-pressure reactors equipped with sapphire windows described above. 

  • Tensor 27 FTIR spectrometer (Bruker) equipped for transmission measurements with static and flowing gases. A diffuse reflectance cell (Peak) in-situ high temperature DRIFTS measurements capable of reaching 800 °C in a controlled atmosphere in batch or flow mode. 

  • Powder XRD/SAXS/WAXS (Panalytical Empyrian) is available for catalyst structure characterization studies.  

  • Catalyst characterization suite including surface area/pore volume, and chemisorption measurements (Quantachrome Autosorb iQ, Quantachrome NOVAe, Micromeretics Autochem 2900), and TGA/DSC analysis (TA Instruments Q600) 

  • Elemental analysis by ICP-OES spectrometer (Horiba JY-2000) for quantitative measurements (down to ppb) of various elements (Rh, P, Si) in liquid samples, and WD-XRF (Panalytical Zetium) for non-destructive analysis of loose power samples. 

  • Isotope exchange and transient study unit equipped with a quadropole mass spectrometer (OmniStar GSD 301-O3, Pfeiffer) used for isotopic labeling and temperature programmed studies (TPR, TPD, TPO).  

  • A customized high-pressure viscometer/phase-behavior analyzer to measure viscosities and transport properties of liquids, including gas-expanded liquids.  

  • Two GC/MS systems (Agilent, Varian) and one HPLC/MS/MS (SCIEX) 

  • General analytical equipment includes 10 Gas Chromatographs, 4 High Performance Liquid Chromatography units, and general use FT-IR and UV/vis spectrometers.  

  • Autodesk Fusion360 software for 3D design 

  • Tormach CNC Mill 

  • Orion Pulse Arc Welder 

  • 2 Dremmel IdeaBuilder 3D Printers 

  • A lathe, drill press, bench grinder, and other metalworking tools 

  • FEI Versa 3D Dual Beam Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope 

  • FEI Tecnai F20 XT Field Emission Transmission Electron Microscope 

  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Laboratory  

  • Mass Spectrometry Laboratory 

  • Advanced Computing Facility