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Salvador Montilla Verdú

PhD candidate

Salvador (“Salva”) earned a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Alicante (2019), and he further complemented it with two Master’s degrees in “Environmental Chemistry and Sustainability” and in “Electrochemistry”. During his previous research he explored thermocatalytic routes for environmental depollution, specializing on the design of perovskites for biogas revaluation (via dry reforming of methane) and diesel soot removal. Currently, he is a PhD candidate within the RELICS project focusing on the discovery of new routes to trigger lignin valorization using sunlight as well as on deciphering the catalytic mechanism involved in the process.   
Salva is also a fooball player! Playing for Peña Madridista de Ibi.


Elio Alfonso Rico Vargas

PhD candidate

Elio obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry followed by a Master’s degree in Science-Chemistry at the National University of Colombia. During his Master's thesis he got hands-on expertise on the synthesis as well as on the characterization of the electrical and optoelectronic properties of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), focusing on their application as sensors for the detection of ammonium nitrate fuel oil (ANFO)-type explosives. Currently, he has joined the ASSET lab to work on the RELICS project and pursue a PhD. Elio’s work targets not only the discovery of new photoactive systems for lignin valorization, but specially, decoding the kinetics of the processes and the catalytic principles that govern the transformation of lignin.  
Elio is passionate about cycling and outdoor sports!



Research Collaborator

Ana Caravaca Morales

Ana completed a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry at the University of Cordoba (Spain, 2019) followed by a Master’s degree in Electrochemistry (2020). Prior to joining the University of Alicante, Ana was awarded with a Galileo’s Scholarship, which aims at establishing bridges between the research at universities and the industry. In this framework, previous research efforts of Ana focused on the design and optimization of innovative electropolishing treatments for jewelry, targeting to reduce the toxicity of the current procedures. Currently, Ana is a Research Collaborator within the GFES group and she closely collaborates with the ASSET lab developing novel photoactive materials for carbon dioxide valorization.
Ana enjoys practicing yoga to recharge her body and mind!!!

Raquel Montes Bujalance

PhD candidate

Raquel earned a BSc in Chemistry (2021) at the University of Cordoba and completed an MSc. in Applied Chemistry (University of Huelva, Malaga, Jaen & Cordoba – Interuniversity master’s degree; 2022). Before joining the group, Raquel investigated the use of supramolecular solvents to remove dyes from the textile industry, as well as the potential of magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles at adjusting the acidity of vegetable oils. Currently, Raquel is a PhD candidate working in VALIGRA, that is, optimizing a new valorization route for the pomegranate peel residues using ultrasound-assisted extraction methodologies and electrochemical techniques.
Raquel enjoys swimming, playing the piano, going to the gym…she is always in the move.


Qingjie Wang

PhD candidate -
Visiting Researcher


Qingjie is PhD candidate within the Solar and Electrochemical Lab led by Prof. Jingshan Luo, who has received the prestigious Chinese Scholarship Council (CSC) to work in the ASSET Lab for a year. Qingjie is a very active researcher whose main research focus is on the design of innovative photoelectrochemical systems for solar water splitting and biomass conversion. Currently, Qingjie works on the optimization of photoanode for water oxidation and with his incorporation in RELICS and INNOPEC we are exploring novel applications for those PEC systems.
Qingjie is passionate about his field of research, and when he is not in the lab he enjoys watching movies and cooking, lately he is also learning Spanish very quickly too…


Postdoctoral Researcher

Xavier Marset

Xavier (“Xavi”) is postdoctoral researcher with a strong background in organic chemistry. Xavi earned a BSc and MSc in Chemistry and Medicinal Chemistry, respectively, at the University of Alicante (2014,2015). Xavi obtained his PhD in 2019 (University of Alicante), specializing in the field of Deep Eutectic Solvents. During this period, he worked at Imperial College London (2017) as a research visitor. Xavi has received several awards, such as the Extraordinary PhD Award (University of Alicante) and the best thesis in Chemistry award (RSEQ-Alicante). Prior to joining the ASSET Lab, Xavi worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Georg-August Universität Göttingen, and the University of Alicante (Institute of Organic Chemistry). So far, he has co-authors > 18 publications garnering ca. 400 citations (03/2023). With the incorporation of Xavi to the ASSET labs, the group has strengthened its expertise in the processing and characterization of organic substrates, while expanding its line of action into the photoredox systems. Xavi works in the ERC StG RELICS project exploring new strategies to harvest sunlight, funneling it to perform solar driven chemistry.

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