Nadim Hourani

Postdoctoral Fellow

​Postdoctoral Fellow​


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Research Interests

​My main research interest is to develop efficient analytical methodologies to examine hydrocarbon compositions in various complex hydrocarbon mixtures using mass spectrometry coupled in different systems. Understanding volatility and ionisability of hydrocarbons in any mass spectrometer allows exploring real life complex compositions. This is the main challenge in need of advances to unravel complex mixtures such as petroleum or other hydrocarbon containing mixtures. Thus, the study of gas phase ion behavior of all types of reference hydrocarbons using different ionization techniques like ESI, APCI, APLI, etc. is one of my major concerns. I apply such methods to examine hydrocarbon content of shredder waste, lubricant oils and polyaromatic sulfur hydrocarbon mixture (PASH). Similarly combustion and pyrolysis products can be characterized by employment of state-of-art molecular beam mass spectrometry (MBMS) equipped with high-resolution mass analysers like quadrupole or time-of-flight MS.

For such incredibly complex number of hydrocarbon components within such complex mixtures, I employ Tandem MS for structural verification of hydrocarbon analytes. Next a heavily crowded MS spectrum is graphically represented using novel data interpretation strategies like Kendrick plot to extract chemical and other relevant information. To this end, I aim to compare the molecular-level information (molecular weight distribution, mode of ionisation, molecular formula assignment, structural elucidation, etc.) of different hydrocarbon systems using data elaborated by mass spectrometry. ​

Selected Publications

  • ​Hourani, N., Kuhnert, N, Development of a novel direct-infusion atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry method for the analysis of heavy hydrocarbons in light shredder waste, Anal. Methods, 2012, DOI: 10.1039/c2ay05249k
  • Kuhnert, N., Nour, H., Hourani, N, Synthesis of novel enantiomerically pure tetracarbohydrazide cyclophane macrocycles., Org. Biomol.Chem, 2012, DOI: 10.1039/C2OB25171J
  • Hourani, N., Kuhnert, N, High molecular weight non-polar hydrocarbons as pure model substances and in motor oil samples can be ionized without fragmentation by atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI) mass spectrometry, Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom. 2012, 26, 2365–2371, DOI: 10.1002/rcm.6338.


  • ​Ph.D., Analytical Chemistry, Jacobs University Bremen, Germany, 2009-2012
  • MRes., Physical Chemistry, University of Surrey, United Kingdom, 2007-2009
  • B.Sc., Analytical Chemistry, Beirut Arab University, Lebanon, 2003-2007


  • ​Ph.D Fellowship from Fond für Angewandte Umweltforschung des Landes Bremen and the Bremer Entsorgungsbetriebe and Jacobs University Bremen 2009-2012

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