Prof. Dr. Johannes A. Lercher





Prof. Johannes A. Lercher, born in Vienna, Austria studied Chemistry at the TU Wien. He received his doctorate (Dr. techn.) under the supervision of Prof. Heinrich Noller in 1981 at the same institution. After a visiting lectureship at Yale University with Prof. Gary Haller he joined TU Wien as lecturer and Assoc. Professor. 1993 he was appointed Professor in the Department of Chemical Technology at the University Twente, the Netherlands and moved in 1998 to his current position as Professor of Chemical Technology at the TU München, Germany. Since 2012 he is also Director of the Institute for Integrated Catalysis at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. He is external member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and Member of the Academia Europaea as well as Honorary Professor of the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, the China University of Petroleum and the Qingdao Institute of Bioenergy and Bioprocess Technology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.  Being the current Burwell Lecturer of the North American Catalysis Society, Johannes Lercher has served as President of the International Zeolite Association and serves presently as Vice President of the German Catalysis Society. In addition to be member of the board of several Catalysis journals, he is currently Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Catalysis. His research activities in the field of Heterogeneous Catalysis are documented in over 430 publications and 14 patents. His research on fundamental aspects of important catalytic reactions combines in situ characterization of catalysts and catalytic processes with advanced kinetic analysis and the design and synthesis of catalysts with multiple functions. Research topics include fundamental aspects of oxide and molecular sieve based sorption and catalysis, new routes to activate and functionalize hydrocarbons, conversion of biomass into high value energy carriers, hydrogenation and hydrodefunctionalization of heavy fossil carbon resources, carbon capture and utilization.


Prof. Lercher’s (b. 1954) research is focused on heterogeneous catalysis. He aims to gain an elemental understanding of the chemical reactions on surfaces and in the pores of nanostructured catalysts and use this knowledge to develop new catalysts and reaction channels. Processes like the sustainable generation of clean energy sources through selective conversion of biogenous or fossil raw materials are examined. This is done by combining the physical-chemical characterization of catalysts and determining the kinetics through catalyzed reactions. Based on the findings from this research work the institute develops new catalysts and reaction paths that combine a number of different functions and so allow several reaction steps to be run in one process.


  1. Zhao C, Kou Y, Lemonidou AA, Li X, Lercher JA: “Highly selective catalytic conversion of phenolic bio-oil to alkanes”. Angewandte Chemie (Int. Ed.). 2009; 48: 3987.
  2. Sedlmair C, Seshan K, Jentys A, Lercher JA: “Elementary steps of NOx adsorption and surface reaction on a commercial storage-reduction catalyst”. J. Catal. 2003; 214: 308.
  3. Bitter JH, Seshan K, Lercher JA: “Mono and bifunctional pathways of CO2/CH4 reforming over platinum and rhodium based catalysts”. J. Catal. 1998; 176: 93.
  4. Eder F, Stockenhuber M, Lercher JA: “Brønsted acid and pore controlled siting of Alkanes Sorption in Acidic Molecular Sieves”. J. Phys. Chem. B. 1997; 101: 5414.
  5. Narbeshuber TF, Vinek H, Lercher JA: “Monomolecular conversion of light alkanes over HZSM5”.J. Catal. 1995; 157(2): 388-395.

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