Anton Vidal i Ferran

Anton Vidal i Ferran

Universitat de Barcelona

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

Anton Vidal graduated in Chemistry at the “Institut Químic de Sarrià” in 1987 and completed his PhD at the same institution in 1992 with Prof. P. Victory. Throughout the two post-doctoral appointments that followed (at the University of Cambridge with Prof. J.K.M. Sanders and the University of Barcelona with Prof. M.A. Pericàs) he studied topical and diverse areas of chemistry such as Supramolecular Chemistry and aspects of Enantioselective Catalysis. He had the opportunity to complement his academic background with the industrial experience gained during his tenure in a number of research departments at Bayer-AG (Leverkusen). Following the appointment as ICREA Research Professor (Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies) he started his independent research activities as a Group Leader at the ICIQ in September 2003. In October 2019, he moved as Research Professor to the Department of Inorganic and Organic Chemistry at the University of Barcelona.

Research interests

Our current objectives encompass developing efficient, reliable and selective catalytic systems for synthetic transformations of interest, and studying their use to prepare relevant products for the life science and fine chemical sectors. Crucial aspects of this work include the modularity of the catalytic systems, the versatility of the synthetic strategies for their preparation and the incorporation of supramolecular motifs (when appropriate) in the catalyst’s structure to achieve additional function, taking into account the issue of sustainability. In terms of the catalytic transformations under homogeneous conditions that are being studied, our research interests focus on generating value-added products from unsaturated compounds through pivotal chemical transformations such as stereoselective hydrogenations, hydroformylations, hydroalkoxylations, hydrovinylations and hydroborations and C-C couplings on non-halogenated substrates.

Selected publications

- Martínez-Bascuñana A, Núñez-Rico JL, Carreras L & Vidal-Ferran A 2023, 'Counterion Variation: A Useful Lever for Maximizing the Regioselectivity in the Hydroboration of Terminal Alkynes', ACS Catalysis, 13, 10447 - 10456.
- Núñez-Rico JL, Cabezas-Giménez J, Lillo V, Balestra SRG, Galán-Mascarós JR, Calero S & Vidal-Ferran A 2023, 'TAMOF-1 as a Versatile and Predictable Chiral Stationary Phase for the Resolution of Racemic Mixtures',
ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 15, 39594-39605.
- Eusamio J, Medina YM, Córdoba JC, Vidal-Ferran A & et al. 2023, 'Rhodium and Ruthenium Complexes of Methylene-Bridged, P-Stereogenic, Unsymmetrical Diphosphanes', Dalton Transactions, 52, 2424-2439.

Selected research activities

  • Keynote lecturer at the 24th International Conference on Phosphorus Chemistry (ICPC24), “Halogen bond-assembled metal complexes as (stereo)selective catalysts” (November 2023, Ningbo, China), amongst other contributions as lecturer at conferences and PhD programs.
  • Principal investigator on a collaborative research program with COVESTRO AG for developing new catalysts for transformations of COVESTRO’s interest.
  • Evaluator of projects for a number of national and international chemistry panels and reviewer of articles for a number of editorial boards (e.g., Springer Nature Publishing AG, ACS, Wiley, RSC, Thieme and Elsevier).
  • Student promotions: Andrés Romero-Navarro (PhD Thesis from the Rovira i Virgili University), Alba Martínez-Bascuñana (PhD Thesis from the University of Barcelona) and David Mir Molina (Bachelor Thesis from the University of Barcelona). Supervision of 2 PhD students.
  • Filing of the patent “Supramolecular hydroformylation catalysts” (Patent number: EP23382305; filed on the 30th March 2023, publication pending) on a highly efficient catalyst for hydroformylation reactions towards linear aldehydes.