Noémie Elgrishi

Noémie Elgrishi



Phone:  Starting Fall 2017

B.Sc., M.Sc.: Université Pierre et Marie Curie, France

Diploma: École Normale Supérieure, France

Ph.D.: Université Pierre et Marie Curie, France

PostDoc:  UNC – Chapel Hill



Noémie Elgrishi is a native of France. She received her higher education in Paris from École Normale Supérieure and Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Paris VI. During her Master’s degree she studied host-guest interactions in molecular cages with Johnathan Nitschke at the University of Cambridge and energy storage through photocatalytic HX splitting with Daniel Nocera at MIT. In 2015 she completed her PhD under the guidance of Marc Fontecave in Collège de France in Paris investigating electrochemical CO2 reduction catalyzed by molecular complexes of first row transition metals. She then moved to UNC - Chapel Hill in 2015 to pursue postdoctoral studies under the mentorship of Jillian Dempsey working on mechanistic investigations of proton-coupled electron transfer (PCET) processes. She will join the LSU chemistry department in the fall of 2017.


Research Summary

My research program aims to address challenges in environmental chemistry and energy storage while training the next generation of chemists in the crucial areas of modern inorganic and analytical chemistry. The projects outlined are well suited to develop compelling community outreach activities to raise awareness about science and inspire students to pursue opportunities in science and engineering. Students working on these projects will become proficient in inorganic synthesis, electrochemistry, and a wide array of analytical methods. As the projects progress and mature, the expertise of the lab will expand to include materials characterization and surface modification. These skills are at the heart of solving challenges faced by our society in the 21st century, such as renewable energy, clean water, and waste valorization.

My research group will first focus on addressing the following key environmental problems:

·         Solar fuel production

·         Water purification

·         Energy storage

Motivated and curious students are encouraged to get in touch and to ask questions about joining the lab! Being part of the founding members of the lab is a unique opportunity to help set the lab culture and lab protocols. It is an exciting time! Prospective graduate students, undergraduate students and postdoctoral fellows are encouraged to apply! Whether or not you already know what your dream job is, I am committed to help you acquire all the skills you will need to be the best job candidate you can be once you leave the lab! 


Evaluation of Molecular Catalysts’ Properties upon Encapsulation


Figure 1. Overview of the Solar Fuel Production Project

I propose to systematically study the effect of site isolation and second sphere coordination of fuel-forming catalysts in metal organic frameworks (MOFs) using molecular cages as model systems. By using molecular cages, studies will no longer be restricted to photosensitized systems and will open the way for electro-catalytic fuel formation.

Students working on this project will learn and master inorganic synthesis, small molecules characterization techniques (NMR, IR, UV-vis spectroscopy, as well as mass spectrometry, X-Ray diffraction for example), catalysis and electrochemistry. Experience some of these areas is appreciated but not required to join the lab!

Electro-catalytic Reduction of Hexavalent Chromium

I propose to apply the principles developed in the study of fuel forming PCET reactions to the design of catalysts for the selective reduction of hexavalent chromium in water. Hydrogen-bonding pockets will be constructed to lower the high kinetic barriers governing the underlying multi-electron multi-proton transformations involved in the electro-reduction of Cr(VI) to Cr(III).


Figure 2. Overview of the Water Purification Project

Students working on this project will learn and master the following skills: electrochemistry, catalysis, characterization of small molecules and a variety of analytical methods. Experience some of these areas is appreciated but not required to join the lab!

Harnessing Ion Transport Energy for Hybrid Redox Flow Batteries


Figure 3. Overview of the Energy Storage Project

A hybrid flow battery will be constructed, combining the power of redox batteries with that of ion transfer batteries, increasing the overall cell voltage. Research efforts will be focused on the developments of inorganic complexes as candidates for ion-coupled electron transfer processes.

Students working on this project will learn and master a wide range of electrochemical techniques. The project will also require a small amount of inorganic synthesis. A love of tinkering and device building would also fit well for this project!


Selected Publications (Prior to LSU)

1.        Elgrishi, N.; Kurtz, D. A.; Dempsey, J. L. “Formation of a stable cobalt hydride complex: Influence of the proton source on reaction kinetics and mechanistic implications for catalyst benchmarking.” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139, 239 – 244.
2.        Elgrishi, N.; Chambers, M. B.; Wang, X.; Fontecave, M. “Molecular polypyridine-based metal complexes as catalysts for the reduction of CO2.” Chem. Soc. Rev. 2017, 46, 761 – 796.
3.        Elgrishi, N.; McCarthy, B. D.; Rountree, E. S.; Dempsey, J. L. “Reaction pathways of hydrogen-evolving electrocatalysts: electrochemical and spectroscopic studies of Proton-Coupled Electron Transfer processes.” ACS Catal. 2016, 6, 3644 – 3659.
4.        Elgrishi, N.; Chambers, M. B.; Fontecave, M. “Turning it off! Disfavouring hydrogen evolution to enhance selectivity for CO production during homogeneous CO2 reduction by cobalt–terpyridine complexes.” Chem. Sci. 2015, 6, 2522 - 2531.
5.        Elgrishi, N.; Griveau, S.; Chambers, M. B.; Bedioui, F.; Fontecave, M. “Versatile functionalization of carbon electrodes with a polypyridine ligand: metallation and electrocatalytic H+ and CO2 reduction.” Chem. Commun. 2015, 51, 2995 – 2998.
6.        Elgrishi, N.; Chambers, M. B.; Artero, V.; Fontecave, M. “Terpyridine complexes of first row transition metals and electrochemical reduction of CO2 to CO.” Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 2014, 16, 13635 – 13644. Part of the themed collection: Electrocatalysis - Fundamental Insights for Sustainable Energy.
7.        Elgrishi, N.; Teets, T. S.; Chambers, M. B.; Nocera D. G. “Stability-enhanced hydrogen-evolving dirhodium photocatalysts through ligand modification.” Chem. Commun. 2012, 48, 9474 – 9476.
8.        Bilbeisi, R. A.; Clegg, J. K.; Elgrishi, N.; de Hatten, X.; Devillard, M.; Breiner, B.; Mal, P.; Nitschke, J. R. “Subcomponent self-assembly and guest-binding properties of face-capped Fe4L48+ capsules.” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 5110 – 5119. Featured on the cover and selected for the virtual issue: Inorganic Cages and Containers.


Honors and Awards

Selected for the 2016 Future Faculty Workshop, University of Delaware (2016)

Office of Postdoctoral Affairs Travel Award, UNC-Chapel Hill (2016)

Best talk at the “18th Journée de Chimie Organique et Chimie Organique Biologique de la Montagne Sainte-Geneviève”, Paris Sciences et Lettres Research University (2014)

SciFinder Future Leaders in Chemistry, Chemical Abstract Service (2012)

Ph.D. Fellowship from the French Ministry of Defense, Direction Générale de l’Armement (2011)

“Trophée Performance” Energy award for best Master’s thesis, Véolia Environnement (2011)

Erasmus Fellowship to perform research at the University of Cambridge, UK (2010)