Welcome to the new sol-gel revolution…
Article: A Sol-Gel Introduction
ISGS is an international, interdisciplinary, not-for-profit organization whose primary purpose and objective is the advancement of sol-gel science and technology. ISGS aims are both to represent the particular needs and aspirations of the international sol-gel community and to support this sol-gel community.
Since the inception of the highly successful Sol-Gel Workshop series in Padova during 1981, sol-gel science and technology has evolved from its origins within traditional materials science (mainly glass and ceramics) to become an extraordinarily multidisciplinary area of research, spanning chemistry, physics, biology, materials science and nanotechnology.
Todays ever increasing demand for multifunctional materials requires stronger multidisciplinary approach to materials manufacturing as well as the merging of tradional scientific disciplines (chemistry, physic, biology…) into new cross-boundaries technologies. Moreover, these novel technologies have to offer enough flexibility to bridge the gap between polymers, ceramics or metals, between organic and inorganic materials, or more widely between the mineral and biological world.
Sol-gel technology has emerged as a serious candidate to solve these modern technical challenges. Its chemical nature allows for infinite functionalization of the precursors and thus facilitating development of new composites and hybrid materials. The low processing temperature of sol-gel technology combined with the intrinsic bio-compatibility and environment friendliness of ceramics makes sol-gel technology an ideal candidate for the fabrication of bio-active materials. In addition, the ability of sol-gel technology to manipulate the structure of materials at the molecular level as well as its ability to precisely control the nature of interfaces makes it a method of choice for the processing of nano-materials and nano-engineering of interfaces.
Since the pioneering work in the 1970’s, sol-gel technology has evolved considerably and founds its way in a wide range of practical applications from catalyst support, to thermal insulation, from solar cells to oxygen food sensors or sunscreen formulations. This increasing success of sol-gel technology at solving technological challenges as well as the variety of its field of applications has called for a federative action. Responding to this demand of the sol-gel community, the International Sol Gel Society was created in August 2003, during the XIIth International Sol-Gel Workshop held in Sydney, Australia.
ISGS, grouping of scientists who are interested in sol-gel science and technology at the begining, evolved over time in a professional, fully functional, scientific society.
The society’s mission is threefold
- to coordinate the promotion of sol-gel science and technology in the scientific and industrial community,
- to foster communication between researchers from different fields and geographical regions through the organization of conferences and the publication and circulation of technical papers,
- to encourage education, training and research in the field of sol-gel science and technology.
To fulfill these objectives, the Society is implementing several actions.
- ISGS encourages the exchange of information in the field of sol-gel science and technology, through publications and research.
- ISGS organizes the International Sol-Gel Conference and a one day workshop, the Sol-Gel Workshop, held every two years in a different location around the world (insert link to page related to conference) as well as a SummerSchool the alternate year.
- ISGS also supports the organization of other topical meeting such as sol-gel optics, Inorganic/organic hybrids, etc. and co-sponsor meetings in conjunction with other societies such as the Material Research Society, Ceramic Societies, Chemical Societies,…
- ISGS rewards research and study by different prizes and awards.
- ISGS increases the number of quality submission to Journal Sol-Gel Science and Technology, organizes special edition in the Journal and in related journals such as Materials Chemistry, the Journal of Materials Chemistry, the Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, etc… as well as coordinates the production of monographs related to sol-gel science and technology.
- ISGS also develops through its website a range of internet services for the community and for its members. This includes on-line teaching help, on-line knowledge base, news, job offers, book review
- A quaterly NewsLetter is produced to spread information and to keep in touch with the community
- ISGS provides members with reduced workshop fees, reduced price on society publications
- ISGS provides academics with on-line teaching help through the web-site and potential student stipend/scholarship to attend workshops.
- ISGS creates greater awareness of the sol-gel technology by the general public by providing media outlets with ready-made press-releases and news.