Magnetic elastomer foams for stimuli-responsive surfaces - A candidate has been selected

Sciences et Ingénierie de la Matière Molle (SIMM),
UMR 7615
Adresse : ESPCI – 10 rue Vauquelin – 75231 Paris Cedex 05
Directeur de l’Unité : Etienne Barthel
Etablissement de rattachement : ESPCI/Sorbonne Université/CNRS
Encadrement : Artem Kovalenko et Etienne Barthel
Contact : artem.kovalenko (arobase)

This open PhD position is part of the 4 year ANR project MAGELAn starting in October 2020 at Laboratoire de Sciences et Ingénierie de la Matiere Molle (SIMM-ESPCI) in Paris.

Responsive or "smart" surfaces are coatings which properties can be changed by an external stimulus, such as temperature, light, electric or magnetic field. In recent years, patterned surfaces with magnetically-tunable wetting1 or adhesion2 properties were designed based on elastomers or hydrogels filled with magnetic particles. However, the fabrication protocols are rather expansive and difficultly scalable. Porous polymers and polymer foams are versatile materials which mechanical properties can be tuned by the choice of matrix and controlling of the porosity and pore size.

The main aim of the MAGELAn project is to fabricate magnetically-responsive coatings composed of soft magnetic polymer foams with small pore sizes (d 1-10 µm). The main interest of smaller pore sizes is to assure good spatial homogeneity of the mechanical properties. In order to obtain controlled porosity, we will use colloidal templates3 (emulsions and dissolvable particles). The synthesized materials will be used to understand the relationship between the structure and properties of soft magnetic foams. In particular, we will be interested in the influence of the magnetic particle distribution on the magnetorheological and adhesive properties of the foams.

The PhD candidate will work at SIMM laboratory with internationally recognized reputation in polymer materials and benefit of the interdisciplinary environment of ESPCI school. He will be directly supervised by A. Kovalenko and E. Barthel. The work will be in collaboration with J. Fresnais from PHENIX lab at Sorbonne University.

We are looking for an enthusiastic candidate with experimental skills in material science, polymers, physical chemistry or mechanics. The application email should include a CV, a copy of last year academic records, a motivation letter and contact information of at least two referent persons.

(1) Drotlef, D.-M.; Blümler, P.; Papadopoulos, P.; del Campo, A. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2014, 6 (11), 8702–8707.
(2) Drotlef, D.-M.; Blümler, P.; del Campo, A. Advanced Materials 2014, 26 (5), 775–779.
(3) Kovalenko, A.; Zimny, K.; Mascaro, B.; Brunet, T.; Mondain-Monval, O. Soft Matter 2016, 12 (23), 5154–5163.

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Practical information

Sciences et Ingénierie de la Matière Molle

Soft Matter Enginering and Science Laboratory - UMR 7615

10 rue Vauquelin
75231 PARIS CEDEX 05

  • Chair : E. Barthel
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