History of our institutions

1562: Creation of Douai University.

1795: Establishment of the Central Schools

1854: Settling in Lille of the Faculty of Sciences.

1854: Installation of the Faculty of Sciences in Lille

          Foundation of the School of Industrial Arts and of Mines

1872: Creation of the Northern Industrial Institute (IDN), heir to the School

         of Industrial Arts and of Mines

1894: Birth of the Institute of Chemistry of Lille

1896: Creation of the University of Lille.

1939: Creation of CNRS

1953: The Institute of Chemistry of Lille becomes the National Engineer School of Chemistry of Lille (ENSCL)

1970: Structuring of the University of Lille into three independent universities, Lille 1, 2 and 3

1991: IDN becomes École Centrale de Lille

1992: Foundation of the University of Artois

2009: Foundation of the Community of Universities and Institutions (COMUE) Lille-Nord-de-France under the form

         of PRES (pole of research and higher education)

2017: Launch of the I-SITE ULNE

2018: merger of Lille 1, 2 and 3 into University of Lille

2020: merger of ENSCL and Centrale Lille

History of UCCS


Click on a laboratory to read its history - Click here to enlarge the picture


Catalysis Laboratory of Lille

(Laboratoire de Catalyse de Lille)


2002 - 2006 Edmond PAYEN, Deputy Director André MORTREUX

1999 - 2001 Marc J. LEDOUX

1996 - 1999 Gérard HECQUET

1993 - 1996 Jean-Pierre BONNELLE

1992            Francis PETIT

1979 - 1991 Jean-Pierre BONNELLE

1966 - 1979 Jean-Pierre BEAUFILS

1954 - 1966 Jean-Eugène GERMAIN



Prof. Edmond Payen

2001 - 2005

Dr Marc J. Ledoux

1999 - 2001

Dr Gérard Hecquet

1996 - 1999

Prof. Jean-Pierre Bonnelle

1993 - 1996


Prof. Francis Petit

1992 - 1992

Prof. Jean-Pierre Bonnelle

1979 - 1991

Prof. Jean-Pierre Beaufils

1966 - 1979

Prof. Jean-Eugène Germain

1954 - 1966


1952: Jean-Eugène GERMAIN, alumni of the École Normale Supérieure in the Ulm street in Paris, where he had already created a catalysis laboratory, arrives in Lille as a lecturer in the chair of general and organic chemistry. At that time, there were two other chemistry chairs:

     - The chair of mineral chemistry owned by Marie-Louise DELWAULLE,

     - The chair of applied chemistry held by Henri LEFEBVRE (Dean of the Faculty of Sciences and Director of the Institute of Chemistry).

This is only in 1954 that Jean-Eugène GERMAIN, appointed professor, moved to Lille and created in Barthélemy DELESPAUL street, the Laboratory of General Chemistry, which will be renamed Laboratory of Heterogeneous Catalysis and Physicochemistry of Surfaces at the beginning of the years 70. With Marcel PRETRE in Lyon, Jean-Eugène GERMAIN, can be considered as the founder in France, of heterogeneous catalysis. This catalysis was developed in Lille, Poitiers and Strasbourg by his students. Like any emerging discipline, heterogeneous catalysis will rely on existing disciplines, namely, mainly organic chemistry and physicochemistry. Nowadays, both approaches continue their life within UCCS. The Laboratory of General Chemistry is developing in Lille with the arrival of the first generations of students of Jean-Eugène GERMAIN. In 1957, Raymond MAUREL, the first doctoral student of Jean-Eugène GERMAIN, will be appointed Head of Works in Lille, and, when François GAULT (from the hydrocarbon catalysis group) will have defended his thesis, Jean-Eugène GERMAIN will completely leave his laboratory of the École Normale Supérieure. In 1959, Jean-Eugène GERMAIN wrote a book (Heterogeneous Catalysis), which has long been authoritative in this area.

1962: Jean-Eugène GERMAIN takes over the head of the Lille Chemistry School.

1966: The Laboratory of General Chemistry moves from Lille and settles on the new campus in Villeneuve d'Ascq.

1971: The University of Sciences and Technologies of Lille is created.

While Jean-Eugène GERMAIN, leaving Lille for Lyon where he takes the direction of ESCIL (School of Industrial Chemistry of Lyon), Raymond MAUREL and Michel BLANCHARD also leave Lille with their teams for Poitiers and create their own catalysis laboratory there. Jean-Pierre BEAUFILS (of the group of physical chemistry), young professor, then takes the head of the Laboratory of General Chemistry. This is an opportunity for him to create the Department of Applied Sciences, which later became the EUDIL (University School of Engineers of Lille) and then POLYTECH Lille. Under the leadership of Jean-Pierre BEAUFILS, the laboratory will adopt a physico-chemical approach to heterogeneous catalysis. This approach will be implemented by Jean-Pierre BONNELLE, more specifically trained at the School of Solid State Physics. During this period, among the technological evolutions often at the origin of scientific evolutions, one should be especially mentioned: That of the X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), which makes it possible to visualize the surface states of a catalytic solid. As a result, the Catalysis laboratory acquires a surface analysis device in 1973, the first French laboratory to be equipped with it. New physicochemical analysis techniques will eventually complete the material resources of the laboratory. At the same time, the Laboratory becomes ERA (Research Team Associated with CNRS).

After 9 years spent aside Professor Michel BLANCHARD in Poitiers and a postdoctoral internship in Bristol in 1976 in organometallic chemistry, André MORTREUX joined his friend Professor Francis PETIT in January 1977 to support him in the task he had undertaken 1 year Earlier, when he set up the Laboratory of Applied Organic Chemistry of the National School of Chemistry of Lille. Thus, a tandem is created at the head of a laboratory entirely dedicated to a new discipline in Lille: Homogeneous Catalysis. The objective of this laboratory consists on the research of new catalytic systems based on transition metal complexes, with the aim of using them in the homogeneous phase and in biphasic media for organic systems related to petrochemistry (activation of hydrocarbons), to the chemistry of carbon monoxide and its derivatives, to catalytic asymmetric synthesis (production of basic molecules by the pharmaceutical industry).

The renewal of the CNRS association in 1977 formalises the unification of the heterogeneous and homogeneous catalysis entities. One of the themes common to both teams will be "supported homogeneous catalysis", which consists on grafting isolated active sites issued from homogeneous catalysis onto solid mineral supports.


On January 1, 1979, Jean-Pierre BONNELLE becomes Director of the Laboratory and will be its so-to-speak “helmsman” for 16 years. In the early 1980s, the Laboratory continues to acquire new equipment to make the best use of the techniques that appear promising in surface analysis: retro-diffused ions spectroscopy, ionic etching, etc.

In 1985, the ALCALI, Association of Alumni of the Laboratory of Catalysis of Lille is created. Raymond MAUREL is Director of the Department of Chemical Sciences at CNRS and heads the Institute of Research on Catalysis of Lyon. Jean-Pierre BEAUFILS holds a position at the National Polytechnic Institute of Grenoble, and Michel BLANCHARD is in charge of chemistry at the Scientific and Technical department.

On January 1, 1992, Francis PETIT succeeds Jean-Pierre BONNELLE as Director of the Laboratory. Unfortunately, Francis PETIT left us at the end of 1992 and Jean-Pierre BONNELLE resumed service until the end of 1995.

On January 1, 1996, an industrial engineer, graduated from ENSCL (École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Lille), Gérard HECQUET succeeds him. Recalled to important functions in his company, Gérard HECQUET passes the baton to Marc-Jacques LEDOUX, from Strasbourg, chemist and economist, on July 1, 1999.

The LGCA (Laboratory of Chemical Engineering and Automatics) was created on January 1st, 1996. Dominique VANHOVE, following the death of Mr. ROGER, then takes the head of this laboratory, which becomes E.A. (Associated Team) or young team. On January 1, 2000, the LGCA moves from its status of Associated Team to become a full component of the Laboratory of Catalysis of Lille (LCL), labeled by CNRS as UMR 8010 (Joint Research Unit).

On January 1st, 2002, Edmond PAYEN, professor at ENSCL, takes the head of the Laboratory until the merger with the LCPS in 2006 and the creation of UCCS of which he will be the first director.


Laboratory of Crystallochemistry and Physico-Chemistry of Solids

(Laboratoire de Cristallochimie et Physico-chimie du Solide)


1997-2006 Francis ABRAHAM

1986-1997 Jean-Claude BOIVIN

1973-1985 Daniel THOMAS


Prof. Francis Abraham


Prof. Jean-Claude Boivin


Prof. Daniel Thomas


History *

The Laboratory of Crystallochemistry and Physico-chemistry of Solid finds its roots in the Laboratory of Applied Mineral Chemistry (CMA) created in 1957 by Gabriel TRIDOT, appointed as a lecturer at the Faculty of Sciences of Lille. The functions and prerogatives of a senior lecturer at that time were those of a 2nd class professor in the present universities. G. TRIDOT obtained a doctoral thesis in physical sciences in the laboratory of Professor André CHRETIEN from Paris University.

Around 1958, a research group was formed by Joseph TUDO, Jean-Marie LEROY and Geneviève LEMAN in the premises of the National School of Chemistry of Lille (ENSCL) located at the 104 of Jeanne d'Arc street in Lille, to study the substitution oxygen with sulfur in transition metal oxides (molybdenum, tungsten, titanium, uranium, vanadium) and some phosphorus compounds. The laboratory recruits a lot of PhD students to work on the chemistry of metals, in particular with the Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) and with public bodies. The assistants and assistant professors at the Faculty of Sciences, the CNRS research associates and the CEA fellows are constituting the largest proportion of the staff of the CMA laboratory. The experimental techniques used are solid chemistry techniques and solutions involving the development of physical analysis methods (thermal analyses, thermogravimetric analyses, X-ray diffraction, pHmetry, conductimetry, electrochemistry and spectrophotometry).

The appointment of Professor G. TRIDOT as director of ENSCL in 1966 gives a new impetus to the CMA Laboratory, which is organized along two departments after the departure of J. TUDO appointed at Amiens University:

   1) Solid state metal oxide chemistry around J. M. LEROY and Daniel THOMAS.

   2) Chemistry of aqueous solutions and metal ions molten salts around Guy NOWOGROCKI.

In 1967, the laboratory moves to the university campus of Villeneuve d'Ascq with premises distributed between the C6 building of the Department of Chemistry and the C7 building containing ENSCL. The arrival of Pierre PERROT opens a new research field on thermodynamics of chemical equilibria of metal oxides. At the same time, powder and single crystal X-ray diffraction techniques are being polished up, and the laboratory is actively participating in the adaptation of informatics to chemistry. In 1969, the acquisition of an electron microprobe brings a high-performance local analysis tool at that time. This is the period of very strong interactions with the industry, particularly with the PENAROYA company, which will become later METALEUROP, to work on the chemistry of lead and zinc. In 1973, Professor TRIDOT steps down from his duties as director of ENSCL and devotes himself to the management of the CMA Laboratory until his retirement. It is also in 1973 that the Physicochemistry of Solids Laboratory is created.

From the Laboratory of Crystallochemistry to LCPS (Laboratory of Crystallochemistry and Physico-chemistry of Solids)

It is in 1973 that the Laboratory of Crystallochemistry definitely takes off at ENSCL under the direction of D. THOMAS.

The research work carried out in partnership with PENAROYA had driven the attention of researchers in the laboratory on the very particular crystallochemical characteristics of oxides containing cations bearing non-binding pairs such as lead oxide and more importantly bismuth oxide.

New research topics will then be initiated within the Laboratory of Crystallochemistry to exploit such amazing possibilities. Thus, during the 1975-1980 period, two major scientific orientations will emerge: the ionic conductors by oxide anions, thematic directed by J.-C. BOIVIN, and the crystallochemistry of bismuth-based mixed oxides directed by F. ABRAHAM. At the same time, with the support of G. NOWOGROCKI who just joined the lab, investigation techniques based on high temperature X-ray diffraction on powdered samples and on single crystals will be extensively developed, which enabled, for the first time, structural studies at the practical operating temperature of these ionic conductors, namely at around 600-700 °C. Similarly, the exceptional performances in terms of anionic conductivity of the new mixed oxides synthesized in the laboratory, which were never observed on the materials known so far, will quickly bring to the laboratory a strong international reputation.


The arrival in the research group of a team of crystallochemists from Professor J. HEUBEL's Laboratory of Mineral Chemistry around G. MAIRESSE reinforces the potential of the lab, which then becomes LCPS, further associated with CNRS in 1983.

From 1986, the management of the as-created CNRS unit will be ensured by Jean-Claude BOIVIN. On the basis of an active collaboration between the two main themes, new and more efficient materials will emerge, in particular BIMEVOX, which will generate hundreds of publications worldwide and the development of numerous academic and industrial collaborations.


*: largely inspired from texts by C. Brémard and JC Boivin from "Tome12 : Histoire de la Chimie à la Faculté des Sciences et à l’Université des Sciences et Technologies de Lille de 1950 à 1986" by ASA, Association of Solidarity of Former Staff of the Lille 1 University - Sciences and Technology



Laboratory of Physico-Chemistry of Interfaces and Applications

(Laboratoire de Physico Chimie des Interfaces et Applications)


2006-2008 Eric MONFLIER

1994-2006 Marc WARENGHEM

1992-1994 Yolande BARBAUX (Catalysis Laboratory) & Pierre CARETTE (Laboratory of Photonics)



Prof. Eric Monflier

2006 - 2008

Prof. Marc Warenghem

1994 - 2006

Prof. Yolande Barbaux

1992 - 1994

Catalysis Laboratory

Prof. Pierre Carette

1992 - 1994

Laboratory of Photonics


At the creation of the University of Artois in 1992, on the Lens site, two laboratories were formed (registered in the four-year multi-disciplinary contract DRED 91-95): The Catalysis Laboratory headed by Professor Yolande Barbaux and the Laboratory of Photonics led by Professor Pierre Carette. Two years later, in 1994, the two laboratories merged and gave birth to the Laboratory of Physico-Chemistry of Interfaces and Applications (LPCIA) directed at the time by Professor Marc Warenghem. The research topics thus concern the interfaces in homogeneous catalysis, in heterogeneous catalysis, as well as optics and liquid crystals, which are actually historical themes of the laboratory. The LPCIA is linked to the CNRS since 1995 under the form of an URA (associated research unit). In 2002, the laboratory took another dimension, the CNRS recognizing it as an Emerging Research Federation “FRE CNRS 2485”. In 2006 Professor Eric Monflier was appointed director of the LPCIA. It is from 2008 that the LPCIA will finally become an integral part of the UCCS.




Molecular Chemistry and Formulation

(Chimie moléculaire et Formulation


1988-1991 and 2008-2015 Jean-Marie AUBRY



Prof. Jean-Marie Aubry

1988 - 1991

2008 - 2015


Created ex nihilo in 1988, the Formulation and Oxidation (FORMOX) team headed by Professor J-M. Aubry develops then 3 research themes, in oxidation, in physicochemistry of formulation and in plant chemistry. In 1991, the FORMOX team integrates the LCOM (Laboratory of Organic and Macromolecular Chemistry, UMR 8009), which is restructured in 2008: the polymerists join the UMET (Unit of Materials and Transformations, UMR 8207), a part of the spectroscopists integrates the LASIR (Laboratory of Infrared Spectrochemistry and Raman, UMR 8516) while the other part creates the Services and Research Unit USR 3290 (Miniaturization for Synthesis, Analysis and Proteomics, MSAP). For their part, the 3 molecular teams meet are gathered in a host team (EA 4478) entitled "Molecular Chemistry and Formulation" (CMF) led by J-M. Aubry. The EA-CMF was created as a transition structure for enabling its further integration into a laboratory labeled by CNRS, which will be effective within UCCS in 2015.