Dr Orestes Rivada Wheelaghan

Ramon y Cajal Fellow at Universidad de Sevilla

Orestes Rivada Wheelaghan (ORW) obtained his PhD in 2013 in inorganic chemistry at the Universidad de Sevilla (Spain), developing platinum-based organometallic complexes for hydrocarbon functionalization. Later, ORW moved to Israel to work within the group of Prof. David Milstein on sustainable catalysis, developing iron-based complexes at the Weizmann Institute of Science. ORW successfully secured 2 Japan Society for the Promotion of Science fellowships that allowed him to move to Japan and develop multinuclear coordination complexes at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology to study metal-metal cooperativity in chemical transformations (2015-2018). Acknowledging the increased interest in the field of electrochemistry and its potential application in energy transition, ORW decided to learn the electrochemical theory and techniques required to combine them with his inorganic synthetic background to develop new molecular electrocatalysts as tools with application in energy storage. In this regard, ORW secured a Make Our Planet Great Again grant, an international competitive and multidisciplinary funding program promoted by the President of the Republic of France Emmanuel Macron to attract scientific talent to France to combat climate change. Since 2019, ORW has been Principal Investigator (PI) and MOPGA-Team Leader, working till 2022 at the Laboratoire d’Electrochimie Moléculaire (LEM), Université Paris Cité, France. There, he learned molecular electrochemistry, managed his own team, and worked in collaboration with Prof. Marc Robert and his group, developing new molecular electrocatalysts for the conversion of carbon dioxide into fuels. From March 2022, ORW is Ramon y Cajal Fellow at the Instituto de Investigaciones Químicas (Universidad de Sevilla), where he has started his independent career and has stablished a research line targeting molecular electrocatalysis for energy application and chemical transformations.