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Aspen X.-Y. Chen

Principal Investigator

Assistant Professor

HKU-100 Scholar

Department of Chemistry

The University of Hong Kong

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Aspen grew up in Guangzhou, a beautiful city in southern China. After obtaining his B.S. Degree from Fudan University in 2014, he moved to the United States to pursue his Ph.D. degree at Princeton University under the supervision of Professor Erik Sorensen. His graduate research was focused on the development of transition metal-catalyzed methods for the direct ortho C–H functionalizations of benzaldehydes . As a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Professor Sir Fraser Stoddart, the 2016 Nobel Prize Laureate in Chemistry, at Northwestern University, Aspen explored two areas within the broader theme of chemistry under nanoconfinement: 1) the use of γ-cyclodextrin metal-organic frameworks as robust nanoreactors for performing selective chemical reactions, and 2) the design of new radical recognition motifs for the construction of mechanically interlocked molecules and artificial molecular machines. Aspen launched his independent career as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) in April 2023. He is a recipient of the HKU-100, a prestigious award granted by HKU to outstanding individuals with potential for scientific and scholarly breakthroughs.

Appointments and Education

2023 – Present

2019 – 2023

2014 – 2018

2010 – 2014

Assistant Professor of Chemistry

HKU-100 Scholar

The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China

Postdoctoral Fellow

Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA

Advisor: Professor Sir Fraser Stoddart

(2016 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry)

Ph.D. in Chemistry

Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA

Advisor: Professor Erik J. Sorensen

B.S. in Chemistry

Fudan University, Shanghai, China

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