Description of the organisation
The Foundation for Research and Technology, Hellas (FORTH) comprises 7 research institutes and reports directly to the General Secretariat for Research and Technology (GSRT) of the Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning and Religious Affairs. The Institute of Chemical Engineering and High Temperature Chemical Processes (ICE-HT) was established in 1984 and is one of the founding institutes of FORTH. The number of staff members and research associates of FORTH/ICE-HT exceeds 120.
The R&D activities of FORTH/ICE-HT are concentrated along 3 major fields:
- Nanotechnology & materials
- Energy & environment
- Biosciences & biotechnology
ICE-HT produces about 120 publications per year in refereed journals and its publications receive more than 2000 citations per year. The Institute conducts collaborative projects with numerous industrial enterprises, universities and research institutes from Greece, other EU-member countries, USA and Japan.
Contribution to the project
FORTH is the leader of WP3 and involved in WP2, WP4, WP5. The main scientific contributions of FORTH involve:
- The vertical alignment of CNTs (functionalised or not) to the polymer membrane (modified or not) by filtering and the quantitative estimation of the molecular orientation of CNTs or/and the polymer matrix via polarised spectroscopic techniques
- CNTs functionalisation and characterisation
- Lab scale membrane development & testing
- Membrane and CNTs optimisation guidance through multi-scale modelling and mesoscopic simulation
- Nanoparticles toxicity assessment
FORTH is a founding member of the "NanoMemPro" Network of Excellence (NoE) and the "European Membrane House" as well as the "Nanofun-Poly" NoE on nanostructured and functional polymer-based materials and nanocomposites.
The research groups, that participate in the current project, specialise in:
- Polymeric membrane modification
- Polymer synthesis & carbon nanotube functionalisation
- Membrane characterisation & molecular orientation estimation
- Membrane modelling & cell proliferation
- Viability assays assessment
The research infrastructure includes a rare density of experimental equipment operating at the same time, such as XPS, UPS, AUGER, TDS, EELS, SIMS, NIR-Vis-UV-Âµ-Raman spectrophotometers, point illumination Âµ-Raman imaging, FT-Raman, HR-FESEM, XRD and others.
Part of the Institute's activities have led to the creation of two spin-off companies in the field of nanomaterials, namely:
- ADVENT (polymer electrolyte membranes for fuel cells), where two collaborators of this project, J. Kallitsis and G. Voyiatzis, are 2 of the 5 founders of the company
- NANOTHINX (carbon nanotubes) who is a partner in the project BioNexGen