Lecture by Prof. Ricardo H. R. Castro on 20.09.22

Lecture by Prof. Ricardo H. R. Castro on 20.09.22
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The Coordination Team would like to invite you to the lecture by Prof. Ricardo H. R. Castro on Tuesday, September 20th, 2022 at 2:00 pm.

The title of the talk is: „ How interfacial thermodynamics revolutionizes the design of nanostructured oxides”.

The talk will be given as a hybrid-presentation (face-to-face in the Seminarraum, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, Gebäude 01.3, Raum 234 and online). The link to join the presentation online is enclosed at the end of this Mail.

We look forward seeing you.


Crystal size refinement down to the nanoscale results in unique properties and phenomena in oxide-based materials. With properties ranging from unprecedented hardness, high ionic exchange rates, and radiation damage tolerance, the nano-dimension offers diverse technological opportunities to address current societal challenges. However, after decades of nanotechnology, the limited fundamental understanding of the origins of those nano-induced features still refrains a comprehensive design and optimization of devices. In those systems, a significant fraction of the atomic volume belongs to the interfacial regions, a complex chemical environment that governs the system interactions in both positive and negative ways. While interfaces are responsible for phenomena such as the above-mentioned improved ion exchange rate in nano-cathodes, the intrinsic interface excess energies trigger coarsening even at moderate temperatures, limiting service time. This talk discusses how interfacial thermodynamics and its relationships with nanoscale properties offer an effective strategy to understand and design oxides nanomaterials. The first part will discuss how interfacial segregation reduces excess energies in nano-LiMn2O4 and causes increased stability against coarsening and improved capacity retention in Li-ion batteries. In the second part, we briefly address the connection between grain boundary energies and the mechanics of nanoceramics, highlighting how selected dopants affect fracture behavior to improve mechanical performance. These two representative cases demonstrate the power of interfacial thermodynamics in controlling the nano-world as we envision further developments in other more complex interfacial environments.

Short biography of Prof. Castro

Ricardo Castro is a Professor in the Department of Materials Sciences and Engineering at University of California, Davis. He joined UC Davis in 2009 and is the lead of the Nanoceramics Thermochemistry Laboratory, a lab dedicated to provide fundamental understanding, using experimental thermodynamics, of ceramic nanomaterials and their mechanical responses and behavior under processing conditions and operation at extreme environments, such as high temperatures and radiation.

Castro has a PhD in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering from the University of São Paulo, Brazil, and a Bachelor in Molecular Sciences from the same University. He has published over 100 scientific articles, and is an active member of The American Ceramic Society. He was the president for two consecutive years of the National Institute of Ceramic Engineering before promoting its incorporation in the education division, and is affiliated with the Basic Science Division. He is the 2014 recipient of the ACerS Robert L. Coble Award for young scholars and has served on the ACerS Books Sub-Committee from 2014-2017.

Prof. Castro is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the ACerS International Journal of Ceramic Engineering and Science (IJCES), a new online, open access, interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal designed to meet the publishing needs of the global ceramic and glass science and engineering communities. Castro is a regular instruction for ACerS Sintering of Ceramics short course. He is also a member of the Materials Research Society, the creator of the Materials Magic Show at UC Davis, Principal Editor of the Journal of Materials Research, and Editor of Scientific Reports.

Castro has a passion and a dedication to bringing scholars together from across the Americas. He is currently Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies at UC Davis, giving him the opportunity to address broader topics related research and development in ceramics and beyond.

Last Modified: 14.09.2022