Louis van der Ham was born on June 16th 1960 in Weerselo. He is married with Carla and they have three children, Diede, Frank and Stijn.
He studied Chemistry at the HTS and Chemical Engineering at the University of Twente. During his study he was a board member of the student association ‘Alembic’ and was one of the organizers of the study tour to England. He graduated Cum Laude in January 1986. In the same month he started his PhD research at the group ‘Proceskunde’ of Prof.dr.ir. W.P.M. van Swaaij at the same university. The topic was the regenerative high temperature desulfurization of coal gas in a circulating fluidized bed.
In 1991 he was appointed assistant professor in the group Industrial Processes and Product of Prof.dr.ir. K.R. Westerterp. His main focus was on education and research in de field of process simulation, process design and evaluation. Since 1999 he was also involved in the PD-Eng program and together with Prof.dr.ir. H. van den Berg responsible for the process plant design project, a major part of the PD-Eng program. In 2003 he switched to the Separation Technology group of Prof.dr.ir. A.B. de Haan and was responsible for education in the field of process simulation, design and separation technology and research in the field of adsorption and solvent impregnated resin technology. After a major reorganisation of the faculty he joined the Membrane Science and Technology group of Prof.dr.ing. Matthias Wessling. In 2008 he was appointed par-time program coordinator of the Chemical Engineering Bachelor and Master program.
In January 2011 he switched to the research group Thermo Chemical Conversion of Biomass currently names Sustainable Process Technology with his focus on education and research.
The last in the field of process design, simulation, feasibility analysis and separation of metals (for instance Cobalt) from leaching water streams with Ionic liquids, supercritical water desalination and reactive distillation. His education responsibilities are still in the field of process design and simulation with courses in the bachelor and master program. The final course is Process Plant Design (15 EC) where students in groups of 4 need to design a process from scratch based on open literature informaton. These projects are mainly done in collaboration with industry.