I joined the PCS group at UT in January 2021 as tenure track assistant professor in the frame of a NWO-ECCM (Electro-Chemical Conversion and Materials) project.
Education and scientific background
- MSc in Chemistry, University of Milano, Italy
- PhD at the University of Milano, Italy, with Prof. Elena Selli, during which I spent some time at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany
- Postdoc at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany, with Prof. Patrik Schmuki
During the PhD and first years of postdoc I studied the growth by electrochemical anodization of one-dimensional metal (e.g., Ti, W or Sn) oxide nanostructures, focusing on their application for photocatalysis or photo-electrochemistry.
My recent work deals with solid state dewetting of metal films, i.e., the heat induced transformation of continuous metal films into arrangements of metal particles. Since metal particles on a desired surface are crucial towards a variety of technologies and applications (for example heterogeneous catalysis), I explore dewetting phenomena to produce supported metal nanoparticles with defined features (e.g. size, composition, exposed facets) for photo- or electrocatalysis.
With my team at UT we aim at i) investigating at a fundamental level mechanisms and dynamics of solid state metal dewetting phenomena, and ii) applying such dewetting processes as tools to develop nanostructured metal catalysts and electrodes for a series of photo- or electrochemical conversion processes such as water splitting, synthesis of hydrogen peroxide, or upgrade of pyrolysis oil components.