Institut de Ciencia de Materials de Barcelona (ICMAB) SPAIN


ICMAB is a public research institute integrated in the National Research Council of Spain (CSIC) involved in new materials programs and with a wide interdisciplinary basis. ICMAB was set up in 1987 and in April 1991 the laboratories were opened at the campus of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. The mission of the ICMAB is to carry out research aimed at obtaining and characterising materials and nanomaterials of industrial interest. ICMAB has 52 permanent scientific staff scientists and a total of 216 people divided in eight departments.

The Superconducting Materials and nanostructures at large scale Department has at present 7 staff scientists, 4 postdocs, 4 technicians and 14 PhD students working on projects related to superconducting materials and bottom up oxide nanostructures processing and characterisation. The group has coordinated two recent EU funded projects on superconductivity (HIPERCHEM and SOLSULET) and has participated in other recent projects (SUPER3C, NESPA, EFECTS, ECCOFLOW). As an indicator, the group has published 200 articles in international journals, many of them in high impact index journals, and 36 publications in books. In the last 5 years, 14 PhD Thesis have been completed and 5 patents have been issued.

ICMAB will Co-ordinate the EUROTAPES project and also lead WP3 and WP11 and will be strongly linked to OXO, as spin-off company created from the research activity of the group.

Previous relevant experience related to the project’s aims:

ICMAB has been involved in many aspects of basic and applied superconductivity research activities through research projects related to bulk processing, flux pinning properties, microstructure analysis by TEM and HRTEM, superconducting materials integration in power devices, and chemical processing and properties of coated conductors. Deposition of super-conducting films and buffer layers and nano-structuring by Chemical Solution Deposition (CSD) has become the dominating activities of the group in the lasts years. The group recently established a worldwide record in pinning capability through the development of chemically based nanocomposites (patent issued). It will further contribute to this field with advanced chemicals, materials and CSD nanostructuration routes, advanced microstructural and physical characterization. The ICMAB group has the required facilities for preparation of oxide materials by solution chemistry (spin coaters, ink-jet printing, reological characterization tools, atmosphere controlled furnaces), all in and outside clean room facilities. The characterisation tools available are high-resolution and 2-dimensional X-ray devices, AFM, 2 SQUIDs up to 7 T, 2 PPMS systems up to 9 T, FE-SEM with e-beam facilities, access to FIB and to standard as well as aberration corrected high-resolution TEM-EELS.

Profile of staff members involved in the project:

  • Prof. X. Obradors, Director of the ICMAB-CSIC, has been leading a multidisciplinary group in Superconductivity for 20 years and he will be the coordinator of the project. He has coordinated the EU projects SOLSULET and HIPERCHEM and he is coordinating a very large national project on nanomaterials, particularly superconducting (NANOSELECT). He has authored more than 450 publications and has an h index of 38. He is President of the European Society of Applied Superconductivity (ESAS), member of the Royal Academy of Sciences and Arts of Barcelona and he has received several national awards. He has also authored 14 patents and has a large experience of collaboration with industry
  • Prof. T. Puig, Head of the Superconducting Materials and nanostructures at large scale Department at ICMAB, will coordinate the contributions of ICMAB at the different WP’s and lead WP3. She has leaded the ICMAB research in several European and national projects in the field of superconducting materials. She will be deeply involved in the analysis of nanostructure and vortex pinning mechanisms of the nanostructured films and coated conductors developed within the project as well as on the development of CCs by CSD
  • Dr. S. Ricart has large expertise in preparing chemical solutions for oxide thin film and nanoparticle preparation. She will be involved in the development of low-Fluorine based CSD films and nanocomposite HTS from colloidal solutions
  • Dr. A. Palau has large experience in vortex pinning mechanisms of the nanostructured films and coated conductors. She will be deeply involved in the physical characterization of CCs.
  • Dr. J. Arbiol has large experience in advanced electron microcopies microstructural analysis.
  • Dr. N. Mestres has large experience in growth of oxide nanostructures and characterization including microRaman of YBCO films.
  • Dr. X. Granados has large experience in ink jet processing, conductor characterization and materials integration in power devices.
  • Dr. M. Coll has large experience in growth of oxide buffer layers and YBCO films and coated conductors by CSD.
  • Dr. J. Gázquez has large experience in HRTEM –EELS of oxide materials, particularly superconducting cuprates.



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