“Nanochemistry and Nanomaterials” comprises a set of discrete yet complementary and strongly interacting groups. The activities of the program are multifaceted and span across all R&D steps, from design, synthesis and characterization of novel molecular and supramolecular entities and nanostructures to high-end process design and applications through multi-scale modelling. In more detail, the research groups formed by 24 researchers are:
Functional Nanomaterials of Organized Structure focusing on the synthesis and characterization of functional organized nanomaterials, mainly liposomes and dendritic polymers for targeted and controlled release drug & gene delivery systems. The group is also involved in the development of hybrid organic/inorganic nano-particles & composites for industrial applications.
Advanced Ceramics and Composites Laboratory working on structural and functional nano- and micro-structured materials for environmental protection (new catalysts for dry CH4 reforming and CO and diesel soot oxidation) and extreme thermal environments (composites for spacecraft thermal protection against frictional heating and multilayer composites & coatings for rocket combustion chambers and turbine blades). This laboratory also offers industrial services such as mechanical testing and chemical/thermal process development, including MW heating.
Materials and Membranes for Environmental Separations Laboratory, a specialized center for synthesis, characterization and modelling of nanoporous materials (carbons, metal oxides, polymers, MOFs) and membranes (polymeric, inorganic and nanocomposites). Strong efforts are devoted to industrial applications including gas storage and separations, waste water treatment, catalysis and environmental protection.
Molecular Thermodynamics and Modelling of Materials Laboratory, focuses on developing and implementing novel hierarchical methods and algorithms for the computer modelling of complex fluids at the molecular, mesoscopic and macroscopic levels. The above are used for optimal industrial process design as well as the design of new, tailor-made materials.
Transport of matter phenomena in polymers, concentrating on micromolecular sorption and transport in polymeric materials by theoretical and experimental approaches. Current research activities include modelling and development of polymer-based controlled release systems, mechanisms of non-Fickian transport kinetics in glassy polymers, permeability properties of polymeric composites and development of polymer-based chemocapacitive sensors.
Nanotechnology Processes for Solar Energy Conversion & Environmental Protection, investigating nanotechnology driven photo-induced processes and their application to direct conversion of solar energy to electricity, environmental protection and health safety. The activities include: Dye-sensitized, Quantum-dot and Perovskite solar cells, Water/Air Purification, Photocatalysis and Photoinduced Superhydrohilicity, Cancer Cell Treatment, CO2 Storage and Conversion.
Catalytic - Photocatalytic Processes (Solar Energy - Environment) targeting on catalytic-photocatalytic processes for environmental detoxification and synthesis of nanostructured materials with environmentally friendly methods. Efforts are also devoted to novel Environmental Analytical Chemistry methodologies (cyanotoxins in surface and drinking water, organic halides in foodstuff, Microextraction, high sensitivity analysis of PAHs in water).