Seminars and Events
20 January 2020, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
From the origin of the Universe to the detection of exoplanets: The Nobel Prize in Physics 2019
J. Miguel Mas Hesse
Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA)
The Royal Swedish Academy has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics 2019 to three scientists working in different topics, from the Origin of the Universe to the Planets orbiting around other stars. James Peebles made very relevant and direct participation to the prediction of the properties of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) produced after the Big Bang, and specifically to the identification of its anisotropies as the seed from the big structures of the actual Universe were emerged. This CMB would be discovered by R. Penzias y A. Wilson in the middles ’60s of the XXth century. On the other hand, in 1995, Michel Mayor and his Ph.D. student, at that time, Didier Queloz, discovered the first planet orbiting around a Solar-type star. There was a conviction about the existence of planetary systems similar to our solar system but it wasn’t until the Mayor and Queloz work that this issue was proved.
Nowadays, more than 4000 exoplanets are known, a lot of them with conditions that could allow a life analogous to the one on Earth, and their detection will be the main goal in the next 10 years.
In this seminar, we will review the advances in both research fields and their impact on the development of Knowledge. Besides being very different results, both fields provide a new perspective on the place that humans have in the Cosmos.
17 December 2019, 12:30 h. Salón de Actos
Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2019 to the Development of Li-ion Batteries: from Intercalation Chemistry to a Rechargeable World
Rosa Palacín Peiró
Dept. of Solid State Chemistry, Institut de Ciència de Materials de Barcelona
The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2019 was awarded jointly to John B. Goodenough, M. Stanley Whittingham and Akira Yoshino for the development of lithium-ion batteries.
This technology is rooted in the study of intercalation chemistry in inorganic materials developed in the 70’s. The potential in electrochemical energy storage was soon harnessed and cell demonstrators were assembled by Stan Whittingham using TiS2 cathodes and lithium metal anodes. Later on, John Goodenough understood that oxides would enable higher voltages than sulfides and suggested the use of LiCoO2 instead, which is still employed in commercial batteries today. Finally, the picture would not be complete if the potential of carbonaceous anodes in organic liquid electrolytes had not been realized by Akira Yoshino.
Li-ion batteries powered the revolution in portable electronics and are paving the way to the advent of electrified transportation and large-scale storage to balance renewable sources contribution to the grid, in words of the Nobel Committee “they have created a rechargeable world”.
The battery research community involves today thousands of researchers all around the world, including chemists, physicists, materials scientists and engineers cooperating to push this technology forward to increase performance and sustainability and also unravel new battery chemistries beyond Li-ion.
Aside from controversial debates on lithium supply, the development of new sustainable battery chemistries based on abundant multivalent elements is appealing, especially because the use of metal anodes would bring a breakthrough in terms of energy density.
11 November 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
Optics and Biomaterials to Improve Vision
Susana Marcos Celestino
Visual Optics and Biophotonics Lab, Instituto de Óptica "Daza de Valdés", CSIC
I will be presenting how the use of optical technologies allows us to understand the relations between the geometry, biomechanics and structure of the cornea and crystalline lens and the optical quality of the eye, as well as the relations between optical and perceived quality. Gaining insights on these relations does not only allow a deeper understanding of the mechanisms of vision, but also powerful guiding for new ways of intervention to improve vision. Technologies include 3-D quantitative anterior segment optical coherence tomography, wavefront sensing, and adaptive optics and temporal multiplexing visual simulators. Applications include new instrumentation that has made its way to the clinic, and new eye-inspired intraocular lenses, light-based treatments, and new biomaterials for corneal bandages and intracorneal implants
11 October 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
Materials Science Applications of Carbon Dots
Department of Chemistry, Ben Gurion University (Israel)
Carbon dots (C-dots) are small (on the order of 10 nm or less), quasi-spherical graphitic nanoparticles and have attracted considerable interest due to their unique structural, electronic, and optical properties, as well as their biocompatibility. In particular, C-dots exhibit multicolor, tunable fluorescence emissions, dependent upon both the nanoparticles surface units and their molecular environments. In this presentation I will describe recent work from my laboratory demonstrating varied applications in materials science, sensing, and imaging.
09 September 2019, 15:30 h. Salón de Actos
AIE Luminogens: A Family of Conceptually New Materials
Ben Zhong TANG
Center for Aggregation-Induced Emission, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou, (China)
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, (China)
Luminescent molecule based materials are important members of advanced materials, and have received considerable attention from both scientific and industrial communities. Traditional luminophores usually suffer from emission weakening or quenching in aggregated state and these phenomena which are notoriously known as aggregation-caused quenching (ACQ) largely limit the application scope of them. In 2001, we found that some propeller-like molecules showed luminescence behavior that was exactly opposite to the ACQ effect: the aggregate formation turned on their light emissions, changing them from weak fluorogens into strong emitters. We termed this novel phenomenon as aggregation-induced emission (AIE) and called these luminescent molecules as AIEgens. Through systematic study it has been rationalized that the restriction of intramolecular motions (RIM) is highly responsible for the AIE effect, and a great number of new AIEgens have been developed with emission colors covering the entire visible, extending into UV and near-infrared (NIR) spectral region under the guidance of RIM mechanism. Based on the tunable photophysical processes, AIEgens have been widely applied in many high-tech fields such as optoelectronics, chemosensing, bioimaging, etc, and have been formed a group of conceptually new and promising materials.
17 June 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
ABOUT CRYSTAL STRUCTURES AND THEIR PROPERTIES
Mª Ángeles Monge Bravo
New Architectures in Materials Chemistry (ICMM)
Last March, the Royal Spanish Chemical Society (RSEQ, Real Sociedad Española de Química) recognized Prof. Mª Ángeles Monge Bravo as a winner of the Distinguished Career Award.
The ICMM wants to pay tribute to our outstanding colleague and Prof. Mª Ángeles Monge has been invited as speaker to this Colloquium.
In this talk she will show her contribution to the main research fields in which she has been involved, followed by recent results from her present research in the field of reticular chemistry: Enhancement of properties through MOFs structural design: materials discovery, theoretical calculations, chemical activity, and physical properties.
27 May 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
The Dirac Equation in Condensed Matter Physics
Alberto Cortijo Fernández
Group of Field Theories in Condensed Matter Physics (ICMM-CSIC)
One of the central themes in modern Condensed Matter Physics is the physics of topological media: many-body systems that can be classified in terms of their topological properties, that is, quantum numbers that remain invariant against the effect of changes in the dynamics of such systems. Among all the topological media, especially important are the systems that can be described by the Dirac equation. They are important not only in Condensed Matter, but in Particle Physics and Optics/photonics.
In this colloquium we will talk about this equation and how it emerges in the effective description of so many disparate systems, and how the concept of Berry phase emerges from it, which is a key concept to understand the topology of these systems.
29 April 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
Novel Applications of High Frequency Radiations:
Javier Tejada Palacios
I) THz Radiation and Art, a New Tool in the Inspection of Cultural Heritage. II) Potential Use of GHz Radiation in Medicine
Dpto. de Física de la Materia Condensada. Universidad de Barcelona
In my talk I will comment on recent applications of high frequency electromagnetic radiation in both art and coronary stents. The motivation of this work is to show clearly the possible use of GHz and THz to get important information on paintings and on the ageing of coronary stents. Both applications are safety, non-contact and non-invasive. I will also comment on the applications of THz on the characterization of 2d systems and graphene.
11 March 2019, 15:00 h. Salón de Actos
Big Data, Ciencia de Datos e Inteligencia Artificial: mitos y realidades
Pablo Villacorta Iglesias
PhD in Computer Science & AI. Spark-certified Data scientist at StratioBD Madrid
En el mundo empresarial, el fenómeno conocido como Transformación Digital es ya un hecho. Las compañías ya son plenamente conscientes de que los datos que poseen sobre sus clientes son su mayor tesoro, porque una explotación adecuada las puede llevar a un gran incremento de ingresos y a una mejora muy significativa de la relación con sus usuarios. Porque el concepto tradicional de "el cliente es lo primero" ha evolucionado a "(los datos de) los clientes son el centro" ("customer centricity"). En nuestras vidas, estamos recibiendo alto grado de personalización de todos los contenidos digitales que vemos, hasta el punto de que un software sabe lo que queremos antes de que lo solicitemos, a veces con una precisión sorprendente. Las redes sociales y los aparatos tecnológicos que invaden nuestros hogares están generando una ingente cantidad de datos que, a su vez, están permitiendo conocer muy bien al usuario y ayudarle en su día a día en aspectos que casi parecen magia. ¿Qué hay detrás de todo esto? ¿Qué tecnologías posibilitan todos estos fenómenos? ¿Estamos asistiendo a un Gran Hermano global? En esta charla presentaremos las técnicas y tecnologías que subyacen en la transformación digital, enfatizando sus interrelaciones y sus diferencias.
04 February 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
Género en las Aulas de Ciencias
Beatriz Cantero Riveros
Profesora asociada de Didáctica de las Ciencias Universidad de Barcelona
El androcentrismo de las ciencias y los estereotipos sexistas, que no fomentan el interés de las alumnas por esta área, junto con la escasez de modelos femeninos conocidos, influyen en la menor representación de las mujeres en las carreras científico-técnicas.
Para afrontar el desafío de una educación científica para todos y para todas, es necesario repensar la enseñanza de las ciencias como actividad humana con contextos sociales, históricos y culturales, en que el género juega un papel relevante.
Muchas veces la educación científica no considera los saberes ni las experiencias de las mujeres, y no toma en cuenta los contextos en que se generan los conocimientos, por ello nos parece necesario estudiar cómo la perspectiva de género puede permear la enseñanza de las ciencias.
Se analizan las visiones y buenas prácticas de la incorporación del género en el aula de ciencias por parte de profesorado sensible a la perspectiva de género. Utilizamos una metodología cualitativa basada en entrevistas para relevar las aportaciones de un grupo de siete docentes de secundaria.
Respecto a la práctica concreta de docentes sensibilizados al género, los resultados apuntan una enorme riqueza de actuaciones en diversidad de dimensiones y desde visiones complejas y críticas. Identificamos perfiles de introducción de la perspectiva de género focalizados, equilibrados y sistémicos, con respecto tanto al tipo y dimensión de las actuaciones (del qué y del cómo enseñar) como a su grado de profundidad (sensible, positivo y transformador).
28 January 2019, 12:00 h. Salón de Actos
2018 Nobel Prize in Physics, Part II:
Prof. Luis Roso
Ultraintense Ultrashot Lasers: New Scientific Applications Allowed by the CPA Technology
Centro de Laseres Pulsados, CLPU, Salamanca, Spain
Half of the Nobel Prize of 2018 has been awarded jointly to Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland “for their method of generating high-intensity, ultra-short optical pulses” This is based on a work done at the Univ. of Rochester around 1985. That pioneering work allowed the T^3 lasers (T-cubed, for Table Top Terawatt) since the existing Terawatt lasers before 1985 were monster lasers. Today a Terawatt laser is reasonably compact, a Petawatt is possible and the road for the Exawatt is in progress. The talk will review the origins of this technology and the present status.
But there is another more relevant question, what is such a laser good for? Such extreme lasers can be tightly focused and the intensity -peak intensity- available for experiments can exceed 10^22 W/cm^2. What happens to an atom inside this extreme laser field? Answering this question you will understand why our Petawatt laser needs a license form the Nuclear Safety Council in spite of being an optical (infrared) laser.
The focus of such intense lasers in a huge concentration of photons, infrared photons, impossible to be achieved by any other means, and represents an electric field that accelerates particles much more violently that any other accelerator in the world. Electron acceleration from rest to GeV energies is now achieved in many labs only in a few mm!!! Can we dream with future mini accelerators?
Besides, such lasers are becoming a promising tool to get extremely short pulses of X-rays at the sub-femtosecond scale.