The Nanostructured Functional Surfaces program leverages on nanofabrication technologies and particularly emphasizes on cost-effective scalable process to develop surface structured materials with new functionalities or with improved ones. Much of the work in the program is inspired on natural functional surface structures.
The special competencies of the program include surface patterning techniques such as nano-imprint lithography, soft lithography and molecular patterning.
Presently the program is active on the following research areas:
1) Nano-engineered functional surfaces for medical applications, particularly in the development of biomimetic bactericidal functionalities and cell culture fluidic platforms for cell biomechanical assays.
2) Multifunctional surfaces. The program is developing the methodology to impart onto polymer nanocomposites additional surface properties, particularly those of super-hydrophobicity and self-cleaning based on bio-inspired surface nanotexturing.
3) Polymer nanoimprinting for optical applications such as polymer lasers and waveguides, antireflective surfaces and optical sensors. Nanoimprinting is currently employed to enable the fabrication of organic distributed feedback laser (DFB) on plastic materials for sensing applications.