My group has an internationally recognized know-how in the fabrication and modification of nanoarchitectures with variable dimensionality (especially based on single and mixed oxides) by chemical vapor deposition (CVD), either thermal- or plasma-enhanced (PE-CVD), Radio Frequency (RF)-Sputtering and their original combinations. We can offer a long-standing know-how in plasma-assisted techniques for the preparation of a wide variety of metal+oxide materials (nanorods, nanoplatelets and nanocomposites …), that can be grown on a huge variety of substrates even at moderate temperatures.
In this regard, attention is also devoted to the synthesis of molecular precursors, endowed with high volatility, stability to air/moisture and clean decomposition patterns under both CVD and PE-CVD conditions.
We can offer well developed competencies in the preparation of every kind of needed material and in their detailed characterization by: i) X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray Excited Auger Electron Spectroscopy (XE-AES), Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDXS), IR and Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS), for the study of surface and in-depth chemical composition; b) Atomic Force and Field Emission-Scanning Electron Microscopies (AFM, FE-SEM), for an analysis of the system morphology and spatial nano-organization; c) X-ray Diffraction (XRD), to study microstructural characteristics; d) UV-Vis-NIR absorption spectroscopy, to investigate the system optical properties.
All these synthesis and characterization techniques are in-house available and offered by the group, along with the pertaining expertise, to participate in EU projects with the tailored synthesis and characterization of advanced materials.
In the framework of external cooperations, the fabricated materials are investigated as unique multi-functional platforms for sustainable end-uses, ranging from the molecular detection of flammable/toxic gases, encompassing photo-activated applications (decomposition of solid, gaseous and liquid pollutants, environmental remediation, superhydrophilicity, light-triggered self-cleaning and anti-fogging systems, photo-assisted H2 production from renewable sources and photoelectrochemical H2O splitting) up to anodes for Li-ion batteries and magnetic materials.
The group is, or has been, recently involved in various national and international projects in the field of inorganic nanomaterial design, characterization and functional investigation, among which the following two European Consortia:
- NMP4-SL-2012-310333: “Water Oxidation Nanocatalysts for Sustainable Solar Hydrogen Production through Visible-Light Activity” (SOLAROGENIX) ()
- FP7-PEOPLE-ITN-2008-238409 “European Research Training Network of New Materials: Innovative Concepts for their Fabrication, Integration and Characterisation” (ENHANCE) ()
Despite being composed by only a few young scientists, the group has a first-class track record, corresponding to 122 publications, 3 national and international patents and 110 conference communications (of which 17 invited lectures/seminars), only in the period 2010-2016.
We are very interested in joining a network as possible partners in which we develop and characterize the materials required for the ultimate target technological applications (decomposition of solid, gaseous and liquid pollutants, environmental remediation, superhydrophilicity, light-triggered self-cleaning and anti-fogging systems, photo-assisted H2 production from renewable sources and photoelectrochemical H2O splitting, energy-efficient )