MIT MATERIALS SPECIAL SEMINAR: Brief Overview of Polymer (Nano)Composites at QMUL: from Novel and More Sustainable Manufacturing to Multifunctional Properties to Applications

Thursday, February 20, 2020 at 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Guggenheim Laboratory, 33-116 125 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139

This presentation will show an overview of the research activities of the Polymer and Composites Technology Team at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), where the vision is to apply nanotechnology to polymers and polymer composites. The main aim is twofold: i) advancing fundamental understanding of polymer and composites processing and physics and ii) provide polymers and composites with a host of new functionalities, including electrical and thermal conductivity, sensing, gas barrier, fire retardancy, etc., for the benefit of different industries. New processing techniques will be introduced, like Pressing&Folding (P&F), inspired by croissant‐making, which has been found, on one hand, to efficiently disperse nanoparticles and, on the other hand, to promote ultra‐high energy density in polar polymers film capacitors. Properties like pyroresistivity, thermoelectricity and resistive sensing in conductive polymer composites will be presented. Moreover, the self‐regulating out‐of‐oven manufacturing of fibre‐reinforced composites will be presented along with the integrated strain and damage sensing and the design, processing and properties of hierarchical smart composites.

The talk will include some proof‐of‐concepts and applications developed in collaboration with industry.

Selected papers presented:
    i) Meng et al. Nat. Comm. (2019) 10, 4535.
    ii) Crespo et al. Adv. Funct. Mat. (2019) 1900738.
    iii) Santagiuliana et al. ACS Nano (2018) 12, 9040.
    iv) Taroni et al. Adv. Funct. Mat. (2018) 28, 1704285.
    v) Yi et al. Adv. Funct. Mat. (2017) 1702253.
    vi) Yan et al. ACS Appl. Mat. Interf. (2016) 24112.

Speaker Bios:
Emiliano Bilotti is a Reader (equiv. to Assoc. Prof.) in Polymer Science and Technology at Queen Mary University of London, where he leads the thermoplastic polymer and composites activities. After graduating cum laudae in Materials Engineering from "Federico II" University of Naples (Italy), he obtained a PhD on polymer/clay nanocomposites and new environment friendly flame retardant materials, from QMUL. EB’s research focuses on the Processing‐Structure‐Property relationship in thermoplastic polymers and their composites and, more recently, on smart polymers selfregulating flexible heaters), polymers for energy (organic thermoelectrics, ferroelectric/relaxor polymers) and graphene nanocomposites.  EB is author/co‐author of approximately 90 peer‐reviewed papers (h‐index of 29), 4 book chapters and 5 patents.

Han Zhang is a Lecturer in Materials Science at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), where he leads the long‐fibre composites research activities. He obtained his BEng from Beihang University (formerly known as BUAA) and PhD from QMUL. His research focuses mainly on multifunctional composites, smart materials, hierarchical lightweight composites and nanomaterials, with innovations from materials processing to final applications. Han has extensive experience from design and processing to advanced characterisations and interpretation of polymer and composite materials, with more than 40 publications in peer‐reviewed journals and book chapters.

Dimitrios Papageorgiou is a Lecturer in Materials Science at Queen Mary University of London (United Kingdom). He received his Ph.D. from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece) and continued his post‐doctoral studies at the University of Manchester, working on graphene‐reinforced polymer nanocomposites. His research activities focus on the fabrication of multifunctional polymer nanocomposites for advanced applications, the analysis of their reinforcement characteristics via micromechanical theories and all aspects of their structure/property relationships. A major part of his research also involves the deformation mechanisms of nanomaterials and nanocomposites studied with the use of Raman spectroscopy. DP has published more than 60 research articles and has an h‐index of 25.

Giovanni Santagiuliana is the Polymer Research Manager of Nanoforce Technology Ltd., a QMUL subsidiary focused on technology transfer to industry. He received his BSc and MSc in Materials Science from the University of Padova, Italy. He worked as a composite materials R&D specialist in industry for two years before obtaining his PhD from Queen Mary University of London on graphene‐based polymer composites with enhanced mechanical and electrical properties. His current activities in Nanoforce concern the development of processing techniques for polymers and composites, and the liaison between industries and Bilotti's research group.

Hosted By: Professor Brian L. Wardle, MIT-Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics


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