> 5th School of Materials Synthesis: Sol-Gel Process – Sept 2011

5ta Escuela de Síntesis de Materiales: Procesos Sol Gel

Buenos Aires, Argentina

The 5ª Escuela de Sintesis de Materiales: Procesos sol-gel was held 27 sept-7 oct 2011. This School held every 2 years in Buenos Aires since 2003 is co-organized by the Universities of Buenos Aires (UBA) and San Martín (UNSAM), Argentina.
Event supported by ISGS

  • 45 students from different Latin American countries attended the 48 hours of lectures.
  • 33 students (6 from Brasil, 3 from Venezuela, 1 from Colombia, Bolivia, Uruguay, Peru and Mexico, and 19 from different regions of Argentina) were selected from more than 60 applications for carrying out the experimental work in 30 hours dedicated to the synthesis and characterization of sol-gel materials. In the lab, the students worked in groups of 3 members supervised by a tutor (a professor or a trained lab assistant), and emphasis is made in the control of chemical and processing variables. A workshop with poster presentations of their PhD project was held on sunday with active participation of all professors and assistants.
  • The basic lectures were given by the school organizers (Alberto Regazzoni, Galo Soler-Illia, Matías Jobbagy, Roberto Candal and Sara Aldabe Bilmes) covering the fundamentals of solgel: hydrolysis-condensation reactions, precursors, colloids, gelation, thermal treatment, biomaterials and characterization techniques.
  • Special topics were covered by invited professors: Felix Requejo (U. La Plata) and Iris Torriani, (UNICAMP) introduced synchrotron techniques; Clément Sanchez (College de France) presented the synthesis of hybrid materials and their applications, and Marc Anderson (U. Wisconsin-Madison) discussed the scaling and environmental applications of sol gel materials.

All students succeed the final evaluation and, as in previous schools, after two weeks in close relationship a network of young researchers has been established.

The organizing committee thanks to Centro Argentino Brasileño de Nanociencias y Nanotecnología (CABNN), Fundacion Argentina de Nanotecnología (FAN), Asociacion Argentina de Investigacion Fisicoquimica (AAIFQ) and the International Sol-Gel Society (ISGS) for their support.

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This school was composed of three modules:

a) basic sol-gel lectures (48h)
Basic lectures are given by the school organizers: Prof. Drs. S. A. Bilmes, Galo Soler-Illia, A. E. Regazzoni, and R. J. Candal. The fundamentals of sol-gel (hydrolysis-condensation reactions, precursors, colloids, gelification, thermal treatment, hybrid materials) are covered in this module.

b) laboratory (36h)
Thirty students are selected to participate of the lab course, up to seventy attend the lectures. Students are subject to an evaluation on-site before the end of the course. Those participating of the lab course make a presentation of the work performed. A one-day workshop including poster presentations by students (typically, their PhD project) and two selected lectures by senior researchers is planned.
For the laboratory course, teams of three students will explore the synthesis of a given material by a sol-gel route and the use of basic spectroscopic (UV/Vis, FTIR, ellipsometry, NMR,…), diffraction or microscopy techniques (optical, SEM, TEM) to characterize it. Emphasis is made in the control of chemical and processing variables. One professor or lab assistant is assigned to each group to supervise the laboratory work.

c) advanced lectures (14h)
The advanced courses are dedicated to subjects of special interest. This year the subjects will be hybrid materials (C. Sanchez, P. Innocenzi) and sol-gel applications to environmental problems (M. Anderson).