ISGS eSeminar, March 2022


In situ characterization toolbox for studying nucleation and growth of nanostructured materials and thin films during liquid-based synthesis


Mari-Ann Einarsrud

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Tech- nology, Trondheim, Norway


We have developed a versatile in-situ characterization toolbox to gain knowledge about the nucleation and growth mechanisms during the formation of materials through solution-based synthesis. This in-situ characterization toolbox gives valuable knowledge and information to design materials with desired properties. Of special interest for us is piezoelectric oxide nanostructured materials and thin films, although the toolbox can be used for several types of materials. We use aqueous chemical synthesis as it is environmentally friendly and a highly flexible route to tailored materials. For studies of hydrothermal synthesis an in-situ cell using synchrotron X-ray diffraction has been developed. We have investigated the formation mechanisms of lead-free MNbO3 (M = K, Na) andSrxBa1-xNb2O6 piezoelectrics from salt and oxide precursors. Fast detectors and high brilliance synchrotron X-ray source facilitates the investigation of the nucleation and formation on a sub-second scale even for dilute chemical reactions that is required to obtain a high control and reproducibility. Chemical solution deposition of piezoelectric thin films on a substrate demands a strong control of processing parameters to obtain phase pure oriented films. We have developed an in-situ cell with atmospheric control for synchrotron X-ray diffraction studies of the pyrolysis step during aqueous chemical solution deposition. In combination with in-situ IR spectroscopy and total scatter- ing, understanding the evolution of the nucleation and crystallization of BaTiO3, K0.5Na0.5NbO3 and SrxBa1- xNb2O6 thin films is obtained. This understanding will guide us to design of the optimal procedure for fabrication and tuning the desired materials properties .

It is our pleasure to invite you to join the ISGS eSeminar for March 2022, which will be delivered by Professor Mari-Ann Einarsrud on Wednesday 2 March. Mari-Ann’s career journey was profiled in the January 2021 is- sue of the ISGS Newsletter, including her many contributions to both the professional and social fabric of the sol -gel community, and we invite you to read more about her achievements here.

Date: Wednesday 2 March 2022


  • ZOOM (eSeminar link), Meeting ID: 307 291 6432 Passcode: /mswb,,q


  • 09:00 – USA, East Coast
  • 11:00 – Brazil (São Paulo) and Argentina
  • 14:00 – UTC
  • 14:00 – UK, Portugal
  • 15:00 – Germany, Central Europe, Sweden, Norway
  • 16:00 – Romania, Israel, Eastern Europe, Ukraine
  • 17:00 – Russia (Moscow, St Petersburg)
  • 22:00 – China, Singapore, Malaysia
  • 23:00 – Japan
  • 00:00 – Australia (East Coast)