The Team


Steven De Feyter

Steven De Feyter is a chemist and professor at KU Leuven, Belgium. His interests are nanochemistry and supramolecular chemistry on surfaces. Self-assembly on surfaces is a central theme of his research, with a focus on the relation between structure and function. Recent research activities cover a broad range of topics such as two-dimensional crystal engineering (e.g. formation of nanoporous surfaces, chirality at interfaces), templating, dynamics and reactivity. These studies aim at bringing insight in the fundamental aspects of molecule-substrate interactions and molecular organisation on surfaces, as well as the formation and use of these nanostructured functional surfaces (e.g. 2D materials). The liquid-solid interface is a preferred environment to induce self-assembly. Also biomolecular systems (DNA, proteins, their complexes, etc.) are investigated, with a focus on those that are involved in disease related processes. Scanning probe microscopy and spectroscopy techniques are particularly useful to probe the structural, dynamic, and electronic properties of these surface-confined molecular systems.                                                        Google Scholar  ResearchGate


Yves Geerts

Yves Geerts is a chemist and professor at ULB, Belgium. His research focuses on the design, synthesis and processing of novel materials with unusual optoelectronic properties. In the past, YG has mostly worked in the field of discotic liquid crystals. More recently, he has redirected his scientific activities towards crystals. Three research lines are developed: (i) the crystal engineering of organic semiconductors to increase charge carrier mobility, (ii) the use of well-defined non-equilibrium thermodynamic conditions to control the thin film morphology and polymorphism, (iii) the substrate-induced phases of molecular crystals, in close collaboration with R. Resel.                                                                                      Google Scholar  ResearchGate


Sandra Van Aert

Sandra Van Aert is a physicist and Professor at University of Antwerp, Belgium. She pioneered the use of statistical parameter estimation theory in the field of transmission electron microscopy. This enables one to measure unknown structure parameters with high accuracy and precision from experimental images.  This is nowadays recognised as the optimal method for quantitative electron microscopy and allows one to measure 2D atomic column positions with subpicometer precision, to measure compositional changes at interfaces, to count atoms in an atomic column with single atom sensitivity, to unscramble  mixtures of elements, and to reconstruct 3D structures with atomic resolution. The method of atom-counting that she developed, resulted in the first 3D reconstruction of a nanosized particle with atomic resolution - a dream of many experts in the field of electron microscopy. For this work she received an outstanding paper award and several research highlights. One of her current research interests is to detect and position light elements including oxygen and hydrogen using state-of-the-art aberration corrected electron microscopy in combination with advanced statistical techniques.                                                                                               Google Scholar  ResearchGate


Roland Resel

Roland Resel is a physicist and professor at TUGraz, Austria. Roland Reseal has contributed to the field of organic semiconductors mainly on the structural characterisation of thin films which are used in organic electronic devices. Thin films of molecular crystals, thermotropic and lyotropic liquid crystals, polymers as well as of self-assembled monolayers are investigated to solve crystal structures, characterize the epitaxial order and to relate the crystallographic real structure to the thin film morphology. The goal of his current research is to identify the basic mechanisms which determine the order of the molecules at interfaces. To this end, in-house x-ray diffractometers and but also synchrotron facilities will be used for the project. Working experience is established at the synchrotrons, ESRF Grenoble, HASYLAB Hamburg, BESSY Berlin and ELETTRA Trieste.                                                                                                                        Google Scholar  ResearchGate


Roberto Lazzaroni

Roberto Lazzaroni is a chemist and professor at University of Mons.His research interests mostly deal with: (i) the morphological, electronic, optical, and transport properties of organic (semi)conducting materials in thin films, (ii) the chemical nature, the structure, and the electronic properties of organic/organic and organic/inorganic interfaces, and (iii) the self-assembly of functional (macro)molecules at surfaces. This is achieved through a joint theoretical/experimental approach in which multiscale modelling is combined with experimental structural, spectroscopic and scanning probe techniques.            Google Scholar  ResearchGate

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Klaus Müllen

Klaus Müllen is a celebrated polymer chemist and former director of the Max Planck  institute for polymer research at Mainz, Germany. He is now a professor emeritus at University of Mainz. Klaus Müllen's broad research interests range from the development of new polymer-forming reactions, including methods of organometallic chemistry, to the chemistry and physics of small molecules, graphene, dendrimers and biosynthetic hybrids. His work further encompasses the formation of multi-dimensional polymers with complex shape-persistent architectures, nanocomposites, and molecular materials with liquid crystalline properties for electronic and optoelectronic devices. He is the founding father of the field nano-graphenes, out of which graphene nanoribbons that presently receive tremendous attention for opening the band gap of graphene in a controlled way.