Mohammed Lahcini


  • Institution:
    Caddi Ayyad University
  • Scientific competencies:
    organometallic and macromolecular chemistry; heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals synthesis and homogeneous catalysis in biopolymers; bionanocomposites materials and green chemistry


Mohammed Lahcini was born in 1966 in Rabat. He received both his Master and Ph.D. from the University of Bordeaux 1- France in 1991 and 1994, respectively, under the supervision of Professor Bernard Jousseaume. After subsequent postdoctoral research with Professor Bernard Jousseaume, he started his academic carrier at Cadi Ayyad University in 1995 as Assistant Professor and in 2002 he was appointed Full Professor. During 2002-2019, he was several time as a visiting scientist ; at Helsinki University with Professors Timo Repo and Marku Leskelaa (2002-20012), at University of Hambourg with Professor Hans Kricheldorf (2006-2015), at University of Rouen (2010-2012), Qatar University (2013-2016), Zagreb University September 2017,  and march 2019 and Orléans University 2019. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Research award for Experienced Researchers. His research covers organometallic and macromolecular chemistry; heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemicals synthesis and homogeneous catalysis in biopolymers and bionanocomposites materials and green chemistry including the chemistry of bio-sourced materials.


Fertilizers are considered as important elements to maintain the soil fertility and to supply the human demands of food. From now on, more than 70% of the seed yield will have to depend on fertilizers [1]. Besides, the fertilization process is referred to as the main way to work around the decrease of the arable land over the past few decades due to urbanization and climate change. As consequence of the fertilization process, a rapid release of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as major nutriments (NPK) from fertilizers rises up many doubts on their sustainability and efficiency against the plant’s needs [2]. This study presents a new approach for preparing a new type of slow-release membrane-covered DAP fertilizer with PCL-g-GG and PCL-g-HNT as biodegradable carrier materials. The grafting of PCL on GG and HNT was carried out by surface-initiated ring opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone in solvent free condition at different percentages of fillers (GG and HNT) (1%, 3% and 5%) and fixed amount of catalyst tetra(phenylethynyl)tin [εCL/SnAK = 1000/1]. By dip-coating process and drying at 30°C the DAP granules were covered by a thin layer within the PCL matrix grafted on guar gum or halloysite nanotubes. The release behavior of DAP coated by composites films was studied, and following conclusions were achieved: (1) the introduction of hydrophilic charges, guar gum and halloysite nanotubes, increase the swellability of PCL matrix and increased the adhesion between the coating film and surface of DAP granules; (2) the DAP release rate could be controlled by adjusting the charges (GG or HNT) contents on the coating composites. The liberation degree of nutrients can be varied from 2 hours for uncoated DAP to 50 hours with coated DAP by materials prepared 1% wt of GG and HNT; (3) scanning electron microscopy cross-section images revealed that the coating thickness of DAP granules is around 25µm with good adhesion between the granules and the coating films; (4) composite materials prepared with 1% wt of GG and HNT present the best performance in term of mechanical proprieties and hydrophobic characters. Therefore, the modified PCL products for controlled release could be expected to have widely potential application in agriculture industry as fertilizer carrier.

References : 

1. Brown ME, Higgins N (2009) Markets, climate change, and food security in West Africa. Environ Sci Technol 43:8016–8020
2. FAO (2009) Global agriculture towards 2050. In: High lev expert forum-how to feed world 2050, pp 1–4


The Authors would like to acknowledge the support through the R&D Initiative – Appel à projets autour des phosphates APPHOS – sponsored by OCP (OCP Foundation, R&D OCP,

Mohammed VI Polytechnic University, National Centre of Scientific and technical Research CNRST, Ministry of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Professional Training of Morocco MESRSFC) under the project entitled “Stabilisation et libération contrôlée des fertilisants par enrobage des engrais phosphatés par de nouvelles formulations polymères : une option de l’utilisation efficace des nutriments dans l’agriculture”, project ID VAL-RAI-01/2017 and the CNRST-Morocco, Projet Prioritaire PPR1/2015/73 and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation for supporting synthesis of bio-nanocomposites.