We currently concentrate on the following topics:
Investigation of polymer properties
- Polymer coatings are deployed in a wide range of industries to prevent diffusion of impurities and elements causing corrosion (S, Cl, Na, K, ...). Our group employs depth-resolved LA-ICP-MS/LIBS analysis to investigate this topic.
- Microplastics are a heavily discussed topic due to their immense impact on our ecosystems. We focus on the characterization of the uptake and release behavior of heavy metals from microplastics, which could further aggravate the already negative environmental impacts.
High-performance polymers are used in a variety of modern technologies and applications. A general obstacle to the long-term use of polymers is their degradation. This is often associated with a loss of mechanical strength, embrittlement, cracking, etc., which can dramatically lower the durability of a product. In addition to the elementary composition, a LIBS spectrum also provides hints on the molecular composition of a sample. We use this information to perform spatially- and depth-resolved polymer degradation studies.
Characterization of complex metal oxides (CMOs)
Complex metal oxides (CMOs) are promising materials with the great potential to significantly improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries or solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The properties of these materials can be tuned by slight changes in the stoichiometry or the addition of dopants. Our group develops novel analytical methods for the precise determination of the stoichiometric composition and doping degree of thin layers.