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Nanoscience, Innovative Materials and Efficient Processes

"There is plenty of room at the bottom" was the title of R. Feynman's presentation in 1959 at Caltech during the American Physical Society convention. Fifty years later, this vision has become a reality, largely due to the progress made in managing small time and space scales and in multiphysics coupling.

Synthesis of carbon nanotubes, graphene foils and active nanoparticles, nanostructuring of surfaces and thin layers: these are just a few of the research avenues being explored in the École Polytechnique laboratories which can be used to design new smart materials or active surfaces, multipurpose devices and sensors, miniature autonomous biosensors, and new catalysts.


Some ongoing projects:

Chemists set out to discover new molecules
Discovering more active and less costly synthesis routes is a major challenge for modern chemistry in order to produce interesting new molecules that will open up new possibilities in chemistry and pharmaceuticals. The Laboratoire de Chimie et Synthèse Organique (LSO - Organic Synthesis Laboratory) has developed several effective procedures for synthesizing complex molecules, particularly heterocyclic compounds such as fluoroazaindolines, pyrimidones, thiophenes, and dihydrothiazines. Note that dihydrothiazines represent a class of heterocyclics that are practially unknown. This new synthesis route will make it easier to study them and discover their potential applications. These results are produced by the degenerative transfer of dithiocarbonates (xanthates); a process discovered in this laboratory.

World leader in nanometer-scale imaging
The Physics of Interfaces Laboratory (PICM), in collaboration with Professor K. Wickramasinghe from the University of California Irvine, have developed a new nanometer-scale chemical imaging technique called stimulated near-field Raman spectroscopy (STERS), or stimulated nano-Raman. With its unique characteristics, this technique is a valuable characterization tool in several modern nanotechnology research fields such as organic electronics and nanoelectronics. The Essonne General Council has chosen the STERS project in partnership with the Essonne-based business Horiba Jobin Yvon to be used for ASTRE projects.  These projects were made possible by financial support from the École and RTR A "Physics Triangle"(Topic-Based Advance Research Network).