ISGS eSeminar, July 2024

 What are the opportunities and challenges of using silicon polyolates in sol gel processes? 

Nicola Hüsing
Paris Lodron University of Salzburg, Jakob-Haringer Str. 2a, 5020 Salzburg, Austria


Organic silicon compounds are the key precursors in the synthesis of siloxane  or silica-based materials, including silicones, glasses or hybrid materials. Most frequently, alkoxysilanes based on monofunctional alcohols, such as Si(OR)4 or R’Si(OR)3 with R = CH3 or C2H5 are used as starting compounds. Silicon polyolates, which can be obtained either from tetraalkoxy-/organotrialkoxysilanes or from biogenic amorphous silica with the corresponding polyols, have already been studied for many years. However, they are still not very common in materials synthesis. 

In this lecture, an overview of the rich diversity of the polyolate chemistry of silicon will be presented. Not only the structure and chemistry of these modified silanes, such as tetrakis (2 hydroxyethyl)orthosilicate, bis(catecholato)silane or analogous car-bohydrate derivatives will be highlighted, but also the differences in reactivity, e.g. hydrolysis and condensation reactions, in com-parison to tetraethoxy- or methoxysilane will be discussed. However, these silanes offer far more interesting aspects, such as their role in diol or polyol-mediated  depolymerization reactions of (biogenic) silica towards a more sustainable route to Si(OR)4 or silica materials. In addition, utilizing diol- or polyol-based precursors in materials synthesis leads to novel oppor-tunities regarding templated structures or processing strategies, e.g. 3D printing or melt-based syntheses. 

It is our pleasure to invite you to join the ISGS eSeminar for July 2024, which will be delivered by Professor Nicola Hüsing on Wednesday 24 July. Nicola joins us from the Paris Lodron University of Salzburg, where she recently completed a five-year term as Vice-Rector for Research and Sustainability before returning to her position in the Department of Chemistry and Physics of Materials. Please click here and here to learn more about her research and interesting career journey. 


Date: Wednesday 24 July 2024


  • ZOOM (eSeminar link), Meeting ID: 307 291 6432 Passcode: *1Al654M


  • 09:00 – USA (East Coast)
  • 10:00 – Chile, Brazil (São Paulo) and Argentina
  • 13:00 – UTC
  • 14:00 – UK, Portugal
  • 15:00 – Central Europe, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland
  • 16:00 – Romania, Israel, Eastern Europe, Ukraine
  • 16:00 – Russia (Moscow, St Petersburg)
  • 21:00 – China, Singapore, Malaysia
  • 22:00 – Japan, Korea
  • 23:00 – Australia (East Coast)