Projects

Research Area A: Formation of Functional Particles

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Peukert
Institute of Particle Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the rigorous design of scalable continuous flow synthesis of silver and gold nanoparticles of various sizes, shapes and composition with the aim to produce particles with desired optical properties. The particle formation dynamics is characterised by multidimensional ensemble methods and by high-end techniques on the single particle level. Predictive one- and two-dimensional population balance models for the seed-mediated growth will be established to tailor the formation dynamics. Finally, the synthesis will be coupled with size- and shape-selective chromatography.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Doris Segets
Process Technology for Electrochemical Functional Materials Research Group, University of Duisburg-Essen (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the development of a continuous process for the preparation of hierarchically organised indium phosphide core, zinc sulphide shell (InP/ZnS) supraparticles. These will combine the advantage of tailored absorption and emission properties with secondary particle sizes > 100 nm. While the former will be achieved via colour mixing of red, green and blue (r/g/b) primary particles, the latter will be realised by the combination of highly reproducible experiments with numerical parameter identification and rigorous mathematical optimization. This will allow the design of optimum processes under uncertain conditions for their production at technical scale.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Robin Klupp Taylor (MEng, DPhil (Oxon))
Nanostructured Particles Research Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the deposition of plasmonic patches made of noble metal on dielectric particles. To determine which process parameters lead to a certain degree of coverage and shape of patches, we will perform inline measurements of the kinetics of the redox reactions, the patch nucleation and patch growth during continuous flow synthesis. Thus, we will establish a model for patch formation. Process parameters which lead to excellent optical properties will be identified and the corresponding particles synthesised on the order of few grams and evaluated as pigments. In addition, we will functionalise tailored metal patches on nanoscale core particles in order to endow these with ability to perform anisotropic interactions.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Martin Hartmann
Erlangen Catalysis Resource Centre (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the synthesis of lanthanide-based porous metal organic framework (MOF) nanoparticles and their application in luminescence thermometry. We will gain understanding in the factors governing the synthesis of the porous Ln-MOF nanoparticles by in situ monitoring of their synthesis. The synthesis of this promising class of materials will be controlled with respect to nanoparticle size, morphology, surface stabilisation and luminescence properties. The latter will be achieved by co-doping of a second group 3 or lanthanide metal, by addition of guest species such as InP quantum dots or small gold clusters for application as ratiometric luminescence thermometers.

Publications:

No publications found.

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nicolas Vogel
Self-Assembled Materials Research Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the fabrication of structural colour pigments with optimal colouration. We will use a bottom-up strategy to assemble colloidal particles into defined thin films and supraparticles. We will combine dielectric, absorbing and emitting particles synergistically and control their structure, number ratios and relative positions to produce optimized colouration in close collaboration with mathematical optimization and simulations on structure formation.

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Research Area B: Particle Chromatography

Principal investigators:

Dr.-Ing. Alexandra Inayat
Porous Materials Group, Institute of Chemical Reaction Engineering (external link)

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nicolas Vogel
Self-Assembled Materials Research Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the development of preparative methods for hierarchical porous materials with controlled pore and surface characteristics, which will be tailored and optimized for application as novel stationary phase materials for the chromatographic separation of nanoparticles. Our preparative approach relies on the synthesis of mesoporous primary particles with defined particle shape and pore size, their controlled assembly into supraparticles with pore size-specific surface properties, and the subsequent conversion of these supraparticles into macroporous zeolite particles with targeted pore diameter, shape and length.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andreas Bück
Solids Processing Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the development of a new scalable technology for continuous production of stationary phase materials for use in particle chromatography from suspensions by “spray printing”, i.e. layer-by-layer build-up of functional, porous substrates by individual droplet placement and drying. We will design and implement a new device for layer-by-layer build up. We will perform experiments on solids formation from drying free and sessile droplets and derive dynamic models that will allow describing predictively layer morphology and spatial heterogeneity of the porous substrates.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Matthias Thommes
Institute of Separation Science and Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to develop a reliable methodology for the determination of textural properties (e.g. accessible surface area and porosity, pore size distribution, pore network characteristics) of stationary phase materials immersed in a liquid phase. We will utilise various experimental techniques, including the development of novel methodologies based on NMR relaxation measurements and inverse size exclusion chromatography, coupled with advanced gas adsorption and liquid intrusion methods. This combination of techniques in the liquid and in the gas phase will allow the derivation of a consistent, unified framework for the textural characterisation of hierarchically structured stationary phase materials.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Peukert
Institute of Particle Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the chromatographic classification of nanoparticles regarding size, shape and surface functionality based on an in-depth understanding of the nanoparticle-stationary phase interactions and of the transport processes of nanoparticles in the column and the stationary phase. The interactions will be tailored by index matching and by porosity, size, charge and surface properties of the nanoparticles and the stationary phase material. The retention behaviour of the nanoparticles will be studied and two-dimensional grade efficiencies will be evaluated. Based on novel process concepts, preparative nanoparticle chromatography will be coupled with continuous nanoparticles synthesis.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Malte Kaspereit
Institute of Separation Science and Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to develop efficient chromatographic process concepts for the size-selective classification of nanoparticles. Since this represents a very challenging separation problem, the exploitable retention mechanisms – size exclusion and reversible interactions – will be analysed experimentally. By means of mathematical optimization of corresponding models, not only single-column processes are developed that combine these mechanisms in an optimal manner, but moreover, new and more powerful processes are devised based on clever recycling strategies and multi column arrangements.

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Research Area C: Comprehensive Characterisation

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. habil. Erdmann Spiecker
Institute of Micro- and Nanostructure Research (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the quantitative 3D analysis of particle systems and porous structures synthesised and used in the CRC by advanced electron tomography and X-ray nanotomography techniques. The 3D data will be shared within the CRC for modelling and optimization of functional particles and separation processes. A workflow for quantitative 3D characterisation will be established for particular particle systems. This will then be extended to correlative and scale-bridging tomography of particle ensembles and stationary phase materials to gain statistically relevant information. Furthermore, a workflow to derive quantitative structure-property-relationships on the single particle level will be developed.

Publications:

Principal investigators:

Prof. Dr. Martin Hartmann
Erlangen Catalysis Resource Centre (external link)

Prof. Dr. Matthias Thommes
Institute of Separation Science and Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to develop a comprehensive methodology for a reliable assessment of surface chemistry of both stationary phase materials and nanoparticle surfaces. Therefore, we will combine complimentary advanced adsorption (e.g. in situ adsorption calorimetry) and spectroscopic (e.g. solid-state NMR spectroscopy) techniques for the characterisation of the surface chemistry of porous materials and nanoparticles. This will allow us to determine the chemical nature, surface density and location of different functional groups of stationary phase material and nanoparticle surfaces immersed in a liquid phase, but also to investigate interactions between nanoparticles and stationary phase materials.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Andreas Fröba
Institute of Advanced Optical Technologies – Thermophysical Properties (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to gain a fundamental understanding of diffusion of nanoparticles in solvents and in porous materials. To assess accurate information on diffusion coefficients, light scattering- and fluorescence-based photon correlation spectroscopy techniques will be used and further developed. For different particulate systems, the diffusivities will be studied in free media first to understand the influence of particle size, shape, and interactions. Then, the diffusivity of dispersions of spherical particles will be investigated in porous materials as a function of the ratio of the pore diameter to the particle diameter as well as of pore size distribution, pore arrangement, and size of the pore opening.

Publications:

Principal investigators:

Dr.-Ing. Johannes Walter
Interdisciplinary Centre for Functional Particle Systems (external link)

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Peukert
Institute of Particle Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the comprehensive multidimensional characterisation of particle ensembles. We will develop new methodologies for the quantitative characterisation of nanoparticles with respect to size, density, shape and optical properties (extinction and emission) by means of combined centrifugation and gas phase analytics. In addition, we will perform systematic non-ideality studies using analytical (ultra)centrifugation. We will determine the effect of concentration on the sedimentation and diffusive properties of nanoparticles for narrow and gradually more complex size distributions and will further combine these investigations with supplementary, surface sensitive techniques.

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Research Area D: Modelling and Optimization

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Ana-Sunčana Smith
Physics Underlying Life Sciences (PULS) Research Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to establish strategies for the targeted design of nanoparticles and solid pores based on the unique information gained from first-principles molecular modelling studies. We will make use of advanced simulations of nanoparticles in bulk and confined liquids to understand the relation between the molecular and mean-field description of the nanoparticle thermodynamic properties, interaction potentials, and emergent correlations. We will use these results to optimize the experiments and enable parametrisation of mesoscopic simulations with the aim of understanding and tailoring nanoparticle stability and separation in complex geometries.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Jens Harting
Dynamics of Complex Fluids and Interfaces Group, Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg for Renewable Energy (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to gain a fundamental understanding of the transport properties of nanoparticles in suspension and in realistic porous structures. Such situations are relevant during particle synthesis and chromatographic separation. Using mesoscale lattice Boltzmann simulations, we will bridge the gap between nanoscale molecular dynamics simulations and macroscale continuum models. Collective behaviour and material parameters have an impact on the transport properties or separation efficiency and will be investigated and optimized systematically.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Lukas Pflug
Chair of Applied Mathematics (Continuous Optimization) (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the model-based optimization of the synthesis and the chromatographic separation of nanoparticles. Building on the analysis of a unifying nonlocal balance law, efficient numerical solution schemes will be developed. The basis for these is the mathematical structure of the equation, which allows the construction of semi-analytic solutions. For the optimization of processes, optimality conditions will be analytically derived, which are the starting point for gradient-based optimization methods. In cooperation with the synthesis and chromatographic separation projects these will be applied to technical processes.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Michael Engel
Self-Organization Processes Research Group (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is to model the route from nanoparticles and colloids to assemblies and aggregates. We simulate tens of thousands up to millions of particles using implicit solvent. The first aim is the prediction and optimization of the assembly of structural colour pigments and thin films. The second aim is the elucidation of individual and collective aggregation processes during the formation of network materials to guide the fabrication of porous matrices. As such, the project bridges the synthesis of colloidal nanoparticles and the resulting materials on the one hand as well as characterisation and materials optimization efforts on the other hand.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Michael Stingl
Chair of Applied Mathematics (Continuous Optimization) (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the development of a mathematical framework which allows to conclude from desired optical properties to a corresponding optimized configuration of single particles as well as particle assemblies. A structural optimization approach based on discrete dipole approximations is explored to allow for a design space with sufficiently high resolution and enabling the prediction of structure-property relations of individual particles. For particle assemblies a structural optimization method based on a generalised hybrid finite element approach is established. Finally, dispersity and angle independency are taken into account by a new stochastic optimization method.

Publications:

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr. Frauke Liers
Chair of Economics, Discrete Optimization and Mathematics (EDOM) (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the development, algorithmic design, implementation and validation of robust mathematical optimization methods for protecting the design of particulate products against uncertainties. Global solution methods will be investigated for optimal robust chromatography as well as synthesis processes, developing methods based on reformulation and decomposition. The obtained results will be validated with the projects. Information on which uncertainties are most relevant and should be reduced, together with recommendations on robust optimum design and quality control, will be returned to the experimental projects.

Publications:

Central Projects

Principal investigator:

Prof. Robin Klupp Taylor (MEng, DPhil (Oxon))Go to iRTG-ParSciTech section of this website

Project summary:

The iRTG-ParSciTech will provide an organisational framework for doctorates carried out in CRC 1411. It supports the implementation of research projects by means of double supervision, monthly seminars and annual retreats. The qualification concept includes measures which promote technical, organisational and social skills. In particular, interdisciplinarity and internationalisation will be assured through collaborations within the CRC and with guest scientists as well as research stays abroad. Modern methods in particle technology will be taught in dedicated workshops. Finally, the graduate school will, together with other local institutions including the FAU Graduate Center, round off a comprehensive support package for doctoral researchers.

Principal investigators:

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Michael Stingl
Chair of Applied Mathematics (Continuous Optimization) (external link)

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. habil. Erdmann Spiecker
Institute of Micro- and Nanostructure Research (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the systematic management of research data generated in the CRC by experiments, measuring processes and simulation. In a first step, an ontology based on process-structure-property relations will be established and metadata will be defined for all relevant objects. Second, a virtual research environment will be developed, enabling internet-based data exchange among projects as well as analysis and visualisation of full process-structure-property chains. Moreover, through the implementation of the project in the Central Institute for Scientific Computing (ZISC), computational science support will be provided, enabling an optimal usage of hardware resources.

Publications:

No publications found.

Principal investigator:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Peukert
Institute of Particle Technology (external link)

Project summary:

The objective is the scientific coordination of the CRC as a whole. Thus, it covers all centralised activities including i) administrative management of all central costs, ii) support of young scientists with special focus on gender equality and reconciliation of family and work life, iii) quality control, iv) internationalisation and v) outreach. The Z project it is the central intersection between all involved institutions, i.e. DFG, the central administration of FAU and with the interdisciplinary centres at the university level.