Ana C. Alba-Rubio

4703 Engineering Hall

PhD: Heterogeneous Catalysis (2011)
Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry (CSIC)

BS: Chemical Engineering (2007)
University of Málaga

Dr. Ana C. Alba-Rubio completed her undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Málaga (Spain) in 2007. As an undergraduate, she was granted by the Spanish Government with a research scholarship to work at the Dept. of Inorganic Chemistry, Crystallography and Mineralogy under the supervision of Prof. Pedro Maireles Torres and Prof. José Santamaría González. She worked on catalysis for the production of biodiesel and gained some preliminary experience on synthesis by traditional methods, as well as characterization and evaluation of the activity of base catalysts.

She thoroughly enjoyed her research experience and she moved to Madrid (Spain, 2007) to do her PhD in Heterogeneous Catalysis in one of the most prestigious groups in catalysis in Spain, that one led by Prof. José Luis García Fierro, under the direction of Prof. Manuel López Granados (Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry, CSIC). Her PhD was focused on base and acid catalysis for biodiesel production, and characterization was always a strong point. During her PhD, she made two short stays in Fortaleza (Brazil) and Groningen (The Netherlands), which help her to have a more international vision of science.

Her love for catalysis and the concept of biomass conversion brought her to the University of Wisconsin-Madison (2012) to conduct postdoctoral research under the supervision of Prof. James A. Dumesic and Prof. Manos Mavrikakis. Here, she focuses on the controlled synthesis of metal, bimetallic and bifunctional catalysts for reactions of interest in biomass conversion and for the direct synthesis of hydrogen peroxide from oxygen and hydrogen. Her skills as an advanced user of electron microscopy have also brought her to work in collaboration with other coworkers and institutions.


  1. “Pore structure and bifunctional catalyst activity of overlayers applied by atomic layer deposition on copper nanoparticles”, A.C. Alba-Rubio, B.J. O’Neill, F. Shi, C. Akatay, C. Canlas, T. Li, R. Winans, J.W. Elam, E.A. Stach, P.M. Voyles, J.A.Dumesic, ACS Catalysis 4, 1554 (2014). [DOI] 
  2. “Poly-(styrene sulphonic acid): An acid catalyst from polystyrene waste for reactions of interest in biomass valorization”, N. Alonso-Fagúndez, V. Laserna, A.C. Alba-Rubio, M. Mengibar, A. Heras, R. Mariscal, M. López Granados, Catalysis Today 234, 285(2014).  [DOI] 
  3. “Formic acid decomposition on Au catalysts: DFT, Microkinetic modeling, and Reaction kinetics experiments”, S. Singh, S. Li, R. Carrasquillo-Flores, A.C. Alba-Rubio, J.A. Dumesic, M. Mavrikakis, AIChE Journal 60(4), 1303 (2014). [DOI] 
  4. “Stabilization of copper catalysts for liquid-phase reactions by atomic layer deposition”, B.J. O’Neill, D.H.K. Jackson, A.J. Crisci, C.A. Farberow, F. Shi, A.C. Alba-Rubio, J. Lu, P.J. Dietrich, X. Gu, C.L. Marshall, P.C. Stair, J.W. Elam, J.T. Miller, F.H. Ribeiro, P.M. Voyles, J. Greeley, M. Mavrikakis, S.L. Scott, T.F. Kuech, J.A. Dumesic,AngewandteChemie International 52, 13808 (2013). [DOI] 
  5. “Structural and Surface study of calcium glyceroxide, an active phase for biodiesel production under heterogeneous catalysis”, L. León-Reina, A. Cabeza, J. Rius, P. Maireles-Torres, A.C. Alba-Rubio, M. López Granados, Journal of Catalysis 300, 30(2013). [DOI] 
  6. “A new and efficient procedure for removing calcium soaps in biodiesel obtained using CaO as a heterogeneous catalyst”, A.C. Alba-Rubio, M.L. Alonso Castillo, M.C.G. Albuquerque, R. Mariscal, C.L. Cavalcante Jr., M. López Granados, Fuel 95, 464 (2012). [DOI] 
  7. “Poly(styrenesulphonic) acid: an active and reusable acid catalyst soluble in polar solvents”, M. López Granados, A.C. Alba-Rubio, I. Sádaba, R. Mariscal, I. Mateos-Aparicio, A. Heras, Green Chemistry 13, 3203 (2011).[DOI] 
  8. “Surface chemical promotion of Ca oxide catalysts in biodiesel production reaction by the addition of monoglycerides, diglycerides and glycerol”, M. López Granados, A.C. Alba-Rubio, F. Vila, D. Martín Alonso, R. Mariscal, Journal of Catalysis 276, 229 (2010). [DOI] 
  9. “Deactivation of organosulphonic acid functionalized silica catalysts during biodiesel synthesis”, A.C. Alba-Rubio, F. Vila, D. Martín Alonso, M. Ojeda, R. Mariscal, M. López Granados, Applied Catalysis B: Environmental 95, 279 (2010). [DOI] 
  10. “Heterogeneous transesterifiaction processes by using CaO supported on zinc oxide as basic catalysts”, A.C. Alba-Rubio, J. Santamaría-González, J. Mérida-Robles, R. Moreno-Tost, D. Martín Alonso, A. Jiménez-López, P. Maireles-Torres, Catalysis Today 149, 271 (2010). [DOI] 
  11. “Transesterification of triglycerides by CaO: increase of the reaction rate by biodiesel addition”, M. López Granados, D. Martín Alonso, A.C. Alba-Rubio, R. Mariscal, M. Ojeda, P. Brettes, Energy&Fuels 23, 2259 (2009).[DOI] 


  1. “Procedure for removing calcium soaps and synthesizing free-soap biodiesel by using CaO as catalyst”, M. López Granados, R. Mariscal, A.C. Alba-Rubio, C.L. Cavalcante Jr., M.C.G. Albuquerque. ES2395964.
  2. “Homogeneous acid catalysis method which includes the reuse of polystyrene sulphonic acid (PSSA)”, M. López Granados, R. Mariscal, A.C. Alba-Rubio, I. Sádaba. ES2391188 (WO2012146809 A1).