Consorzio Interuniversitario per lo Sviluppo dei Sistemi a Grande Interfase

Firenze, Italy

Consorzio Interuniversitario per lo Sviluppo dei Sistemi a Grande Interfase

Firenze, Italy

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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: NMP-21-2014 | Award Amount: 9.18M | Year: 2015

Currently there is a lack of methodologies for the conservation of modern and contemporary artworks, many of which will not be accessible in very short time due to extremely fast degradation processes. The challenge of NANORESTART (NANOmaterials for the REStoration of works of ART) will be to address this issue within a new framework with respect to the state of the art of conservation science. NANORESTART is devoted to the development of nanomaterials to ensure long term protection and security of modern/contemporary cultural heritage, taking into account environmental and human risks, feasibility and materials costs. The market for conservation of this heritage is estimated at some 5 billion per year, and could increase by a significant factor in the next years due to the wider use of nanomaterials. The new tools and materials developed will represent a breakthrough in cultural heritage and conservation science and will focus on: (i) tools for controlled cleaning, such as highly-retentive gels for the confinement of enzymes and nanostructured fluids based on green surfactants; (ii) the strengthening and protection of surfaces by using nanocontainers, nanoparticles and supramolecular systems/assemblies; (iii) nanostructured substrates and sensors for enhanced molecules detection; (iv) evaluation of the environmental impact and the development of security measures for long lasting conservation of cultural heritage. Within the project the industrial scalability of the developed materials will be demonstrated. NANORESTART gathers centres of excellence in the field of synthesis and characterization of nanomaterials, world leading chemical Industries and SMEs operating in R&D, and International and European centres for conservation, education and museums. Such centres will assess the new materials on modern/contemporary artefacts in urgent need of conservation, and disseminate the knowledge and the new nanomaterials among conservators on a worldwide perspective.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: FETOPEN-1-2014 | Award Amount: 2.70M | Year: 2016

ICARUS proposes a new thermodynamic methodology able to identify the elements and the relative chemical composition allowing a nanocrystalline state to occupy a relative minimum of the Gibbs free energy, which makes the nanostructure reasonably stable against coarsening. This approach will be integrated, in synergy with multiscale and thermodynamic (Nano-Calphad) modeling, in order to implement a High-Throughput Screening (HTS) tool that will open a new horizon of discovery and exploration of multinary thermal stable nanocrystalline alloys, exhibiting superb tailored properties. ICARUS brings a radically new concept by addressing a still unsolved problem in the stabilization of nanocrystalline alloys. The materials discovery approach of ICARUS will be synergistic with the forefront industrial production technologies of nanomaterials and alloys. Results arising from ICARUS exploration will be materialized in specific demo compounds representative of carefully selected new alloys families that will change the present paradigm of EU aerospace industry. The most promising nanocrystallyne material identified will be synthesized by mechanical alloying and physical vapor deposition, and the obtained samples characterized toward the applicability in the aerospace sector. A proof of concept from its approach will be given and tested by experts and specialized industries working in the aerospace sector in close contact with NASA and ESA. In particular, ICARUS will demonstrate its potential by producing innovative coarsening-resistant nanocrystalline alloys with enhanced radiation tolerance (based on refractory metals), and light-weight high strength (based on Al, Mg, Ti) alloys.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: LCE-16-2014 | Award Amount: 3.40M | Year: 2015

Securing abundant, affordable, and clean energy remains a critical scientific challenge. Fortuitously, large shale formations occur within Europe. As the conventional gas production in Europe peaked in 2004, European shale gas could become a practical necessity for the next 50 years. However, the exploitation of shale gas remains challenging. Further, its environmental footprint is at present poorly quantified. Great care is needed to assess and pursue this energy resource in the safest possible way for the long-term future of Europe whilst protecting the European diverse natural environment. With this in mind, ShaleXenvironmenT assembled a multi-disciplinary academic team, with strong industrial connections. A comprehensive approach is proposed towards ensuring that the future development of shale gas in Europe will safeguard the public with the best environmental data suitable for governmental appraisal, and ultimately for encouraging industrial best practice. The primary objective is to assess the environmental footprint of shale gas exploitation in Europe in terms of water usage and contamination, induced seismicity, and fugitive emissions. Using synergistically experiments and modeling activities, ShaleXenvironmenT will achieve its objective via a fundamental understanding of rock-fluid interactions, fluid transport, and fracture initiation and propagation, via technological innovations obtained in collaboration with industry, and via improvements on characterization tools. ShaleXenvironmenT will maintain a transparent discussion with all stakeholders, including the public, and will suggest ideas for approaches on managing shale gas exploitation, impacts and risks in Europe, and eventually worldwide. The proposed research will bring economical benefits for consultancy companies, service industry, and oil and gas conglomerates. The realization of shale gas potential in Europe is expected to contribute clean energy for, e.g., the renaissance of the manufacturing industry.


Recent work has shown the possibility to drastically increase the reflection performance of the building envelop, using nanotechnologies. Standard metal oxides are already known for their solar reflection properties, but latest developments identified that nanotechnologies can improve Index of Reflectance from an average of 0,35 to 0,85 because of their effectiveness on Near Infrared wavelengths, even on non white surfaces. The NIR reflective COOL-Coverings Project aims to develop an easy to use and cost-effective range of coatings that can be rapidly offered in the market of retrofitting and new constructions: (1) on the external walls; (2) on faades ceramics; (3) on the roofs, for which an already existing new generation membrane will incorporate a nanotechnological-based NIR reflecting coating; (4) on the internal walls and tiles, since the NIR-Reflecting nanocrystalline oxides can be developed in such a reflection range that may also cover the radiation from indoor heating systems. Glazed envelops and windows have not been considered in the scope of the project since several players are already active with a considerable amount of scientific papers. First simulations showed that NIR reflective solutions allow interesting savings in cooling and heating bills, and pay off rapidly the initial investment. The more competitive target will be air-conditioned buildings with flat roof in hot Mediterranean coast, while there is a clear evidence that also buildings in northern continental climates will payoff the additional investment in the NIR technology, due to reflective properties of the internal walls.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV-NMP.2011.3.2.1-1;ENV-NMP.2011.2.2-5 | Award Amount: 3.76M | Year: 2011

The main objective of the NANOFORART proposal is the development and experimentation of new nano-materials and responsive systems for the conservation and preservation of movable and immovable artworks. While the progress in material science has generated sophisticated nanostructured materials, conservation of cultural heritage is still mainly based on traditional methods and conventional materials that often lack the necessary compatibility with the original artworks and a durable performance in responding to the changes of natural environment and man-made activities. The main challenge of NANOFORART is the combination of sophisticated functional materials arising from the recent developments in nano-science/technology with innovative techniques in the restoration and preventive conservation of works of art, with unprecedented efficiency. The research activity will be focused on the development of manageable methodologies, based on nanosized structures and with a low environmental impact. The main tasks include the production of dispersions of nanoparticles, micellar solutions, microemulsions and gels, in order to offer new reliable pathways to restore and preserve works of art by combining the main features and properties of soft and hard-matter systems for cultural heritage conservation and preservation. In the second part of the project great importance will be given to technology transfer to SMEs that will play an important role in the standardization of applicative protocols, in the up-scale and commercialization of technology and in the evaluation of the eco-toxicity of nano-materials. A fundamental part of the project is also related to the role of end-users. Important museums, such as the National Museum of Anthropology and History of Mexico City and the National Museum of Denmark, will validate the technology and the methods developed in the first part of the project, and provide training activities and dissemination of the developed techniques.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IAPP | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IAPP | Award Amount: 2.73M | Year: 2014

ISSFLOW aims at developing fundamental understanding of complex fluids to allow for the design of smart and functional gels and fluids via the development of novel rheology modifiers. A consortium of 5 partners (1 large industry, 1 SME and 3 academics) has been set up to exchange knowledge in the areas of rheology, sustainable synthesis and scale-up of novel molecules, modeling, characterization of complex fluids (including high viscous fluids and gels) via scattering, NMR and microscopy techniques, and production of finished products in a broad number of applications ranging from detergents and pharmaceuticals to restoration of paintings and lubricants. The overall generated knowledge will be integrated in an overarching model that will be able to predict the best rheology modifier for a specific application, taking into account final rheology properties required, performance, process and aesthetics, facilitating the launch of improved or new products to the market.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IAPP | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IAPP | Award Amount: 2.37M | Year: 2013

Antimicrobial agents, such as antibiotics, have dramatically reduced the number of deaths from infectious diseases over the last 70 years. However, through overuse and misuse of these agents, many micro-organisms have developed antimicrobial resistance. Oligonucleotide therapeutics have the potential to become the new class of antibacterials capable of treating a broad range of infections. By acting on novel targets, they circumvent current resistance mechanisms and with judicious use, can suppress the rise of future resistance. DNA-TRAP will build on a platform technology that uses proprietary nucleic acid-based Transcription Factor Decoys (TFDs) that act on novel genomic targets by capturing key regulatory proteins to block essential bacterial genes and defeat infection. Taking forward newly emerging insights and expertise that exists within each of the partners and through the mutual secondment of researchers, the project aims to develop a new class of nanoparticulate antibacterials capable of meeting the clinical challenge of drug-resistant infections such as Clostridium difficile and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. DNA-TRAP will establish a lasting, international partnership for transfer of knowledge between Industry and Academia in the field of nanomedicine. Exchange of knowledge and expertise between the partners is key to establishing the fundamental properties of nanostructured drug delivery systems to treat bacterial infections and through this, provide the basis for building a manufacturing platform to advance the experimental therapeutic into clinical trials. 17 researchers in the field of drug development and delivery from 2 commercial (SME) and 2 non-commercial partners across 2 member states, will have the opportunity to share and acquire new complementary and multidisciplinary knowledge, through inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary exchange, allowing for the development of new solutions and the establishment of further joint research projects.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IAPP | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2009-IAPP | Award Amount: 1.56M | Year: 2010

The CAP-IT! project aims for developing a deep mechanistic understanding of coating and encapsulation processes to stabilise actives in fluid compacted consumer goods. Seven partners from two companies, three universities, and six European countries will exchange knowledge and personnel to achieve breakthroughs in the field of sustainable detergency. The research programme will involve screening and proof of concept of active-wall materials combinations, process development for particle production, characterisation of particles, and creating an overall holistic model. Innovative aspects of the project include using microfluidic devices, new high throughput screening approaches, new materials to allow the encapsulation of actives for fluid matrices, and novel modelling techniques. The project will combine academic knowledge regarding characterisation, wall materials, theoretical understanding of encapsulation processes, and process modelling with industrial know-how on encapsulation techniques, process up-scaling, and industrial requirements. The project has a balanced mixture of secondments (112 months, 15 people) and new recruitments (108 months, 6 people), and of experience level of the personnel involved. The schedule of secondee visits and a special training and transfer of knowledge scheme were designed to match the work plan and to optimise synergies. Collectively, the consortium has the appropriate combination of analysis and process equipment to perform the work plan. If successful, this project will lead to new insights among the participants in the field of encapsulation for compacted consumer goods. The possibility of further improving prototype capsules and particles after the conclusion of this project offers practical perspectives for long-lasting collaborations, benefiting the knowledge-based economy in Europe.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2016 | Award Amount: 3.91M | Year: 2016

BIOCLEAN addresses the urgent need to create a sustainable training network across academia, industry and the healthcare sector which will fill the gap in Europe and beyond to produce highly skilled multi-disciplinary young scientists competent in chemistry, engineering and experimental wet lab biology. BIOCLEAN will deliver this network of young scientists who can apply their proven skill sets gained during the project life time to solve industrial and healthcare sector real life biofilm management challenges.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ERG | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2009-RG | Award Amount: 45.00K | Year: 2009

Research towards 2D and 3D supramolecular crystal engineering is expected to play a key role in the development of controlled bottom-up fabrication of nanostructured devices. The ability to predict the self-assembly at different length scales, ultimately allowing to attain a full control over the interplay of kinetics and thermodynamics ruling the hierarchical self-assembly in inorganic and biological systems, is a fundamental prerequisite to the progress of the field. SUPRACRYST aims at contributing to the advance of such a central technological field in Europe, and in particular it will focus on the development of new DNA- and nanoparticle-based devices. The final goal will be the controlled engineering of 2D and 3D supramolecular crystals made of inorganic nanoparticles linked through the recognition of DNA single strands. The possibility of interfacing DNA with gold and magnetic nanoparticles, controlling both the geometry and the valence, will be explored. Structural DNA nanotechnology has opened up perspectives for the directed self-assembly of nanoparticles into patterned nanostructures that can lead to promising applications, such as photonic antennas and controlled plasmonic interactions. In this framework, the high-fidelity of DNA pairing code is exploited to program the assembly schemes, and single-stranded DNA (ss-DNA) will be used as couplings arms to steer the assembly of nano-units into functional 2D or 3D assemblies. The formation of ordered and disordered self-assembled condensed phases and their dependence on geometry and valence will be investigated. Controlling the length and flexibility of the binding DNA arms, as well as the architecture of the bonding pattern via the use of spacers and linkers, we aim to manipulate the obtained crystal structures and to tune the characteristic lattice spacing toward arrays of low nanoparticle density.

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