The Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Madrid (ICMM) is an institute of the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (CSIC) (Spanish National Research Council) founded in December 1986, that belongs to the Area of Science and Technology of Materials, one of the eight Areas in which the CSIC divides its research activities.


Our mission is to create new fundamental and applied knowledge in materials of high technological impact, their processing and their transfer to the productive sectors at local, national and European scales (the true value of materials is in their use), the training of new professionals, and the dissemination of the scientific knowledge.

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Quantum Computing with Spins in Silicon
Prof. Jason Petta  read more


Tracking a cell’s mass in real time: a new indicator of cell physiology
David Martínez-Martín  read more


Bioinspired structural design of ceramic based functional materials
Žaklina Burghard  read more

Hierarchically Porous Carbon Photonic Structures

Luz Karime Gil-Herrera, Jose Angel Pariente, Francisco Gallego-Gómez, Felipe Gándara, Beatriz H. Juárez, Álvaro Blanco and Cefe López

Hierarchically porous carbon holds promise for many applications involving not only electrical, catalytic, power storage and related functionalities but, despite absorption in the visible and near-infrared, also optical and sensing uses are envisaged. In this paper, the self-assembly of heterogeneous core-shell and hollow carbon spheres based on polystyrene cores, their optical properties and their response to humidity are described. The remarkable high quality of the crystals permits to exploit their singular optical properties among which a very high sensitivity to adsorption of guest materials stands out. In this regard, an original characterization of the system response is performed by means of the photonic bandgap variation with the relative gas pressure. Controlled pyrolysis enables to create and tune the features of the porosity brought about by degassing and the restructuring of the carbon lattice. Functionality associated with diverse pore populations reveals sensitivity to diverse ranges of humidity owing to selective adsorption of water in different size pores.

Adv. Func. Mater. 2018

a) Optical photographs of a PS@C opal deposited on a glass substrate, where iridescence (at three different orientations) are clearly observed. b) SEM image of a PS@C opal fabricated from hybrid PS@C spheres. c) Detail of a PS@C opal cross section where the core and shell are clearly discernible. The spheres appear slightly deformed due to the resin, in which the opal was embedded to allow the cut...

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