One young researcher in the spotlight: K. Lionty

Krystelle graduated in 2009 at INSA of Lyon (Institut National des Sciences Appliquées, France) where she specialized in Materials Science. During her 3 years of engineering studies, she discovered the research work through a 3-month internship at Trinity College of Dublin (Ireland) under the supervision of J.M.D Coey, followed by a 6-month training period at Hutchinson (France), where she mainly studied polymers.

She went to the sol-gel chemistry during her PhD: her current work focuses on the protection of polymers via the deposition of hybrid O/I silica coatings synthesized by the sol-gel process, for industrial application. The aim is to avoid premature ageing of the polymeric substrate under weather solicitations, and at the same time enhance its mechanical properties. Strong adherence with the substrate, high density, elevated scratch-resistance and hydrophobia are the principal characteristics to be achieved by the coatings. Formulations based on organoalkoxysilane precursors with different functional endings in acidic conditions are thus studied.

During summer 2011, Krystelle participated to the XVI° International Sol-Gel Conference (Hangzhou, China). Her oral communication about polycarbonate protection was selected for one of the three travel grants attributed by the ISGS (generously sponsored by Nippon Sheet Glass). This award not only constituted a financial help for her trip to China, but also gave her the opportunity to submit a paper as an invited student to the Journal of Sol-gel Science and Technology (special issue associated to the sol-gel conf. of Hangzhou).

K. Lionti, B. Toury, C. Boissiere, S.Benayoun, P. Miele:
Hybrid silica coatings on polycarbonate: enhanced properties, Journal of Sol-gel Science and Technology [accepted]