Active nanocomposites

The combination of inorganic and organic components enables the synthesis of hybrid materials and nanocomposites whose properties can be actively influenced.


Current projects


Active nanocomposites

Embedded nanoparticles give today's nanocomposites useful properties such as color, strength or high refractive index. Their arrangement affects these properties, but usually does not change after fabrication because the particles are too strongly embedded in the matrix. We are exploring nanocomposites in which metallic nanoparticles move and can reorganize in response to a stimulus. This changes the color of the composite, for example. In this project, we are making model particles and investigating how they can be incorporated to give them some mobility.



Measuring mechanical deformation with conductive nanocomposites

Normally, composites of elastomers and conductive carbon particles are used if the material is to be and remain conductive. This is how antistatic shoe soles or seals are produced, for example. In the DFG-funded AggloSense project, on the other hand, we want to achieve the opposite: maximum change in electrical conductivity upon deformation.
To this end, in cooperation with Professor Tanja Schilling from the University of Freiburg, we are investigating what the conductivity of such composites actually depends on. Carbon particles (so-called "carbon black") are in fact not spheres, but very complex shaped agglomerates with an often fractal structure. In the material, they touch each other in ways that are difficult to predict. By comparing the structure of purposefully fabricated materials with simulated arrangements and measurements of conductivity with and without deformation, we hope to find out how to make the change in conductivity large.



Prof. Dr. Tobias Kraus
Tel.: +49 681 9300-389


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Secretary's office

Gabriele Koster
Tel.: +49 681 9300-274