Menú secundario

Research Projects

Flash Techniques for the Production of High-Entropy Oxides with MAGnetic Properties

01-02-2023 / 28-02-2026

Research Head: Alejandro Fernando Manchón Gordón
Organismo Financiador: Junta de Andalucía
Código: ProyExcel_00360
Grupo de Investigación: Reactividad de Sólidos

The FOMAG project focuses on the application of innovative fast sintering techniques, such as Flash Sintering (FS), Reactive Flash Sintering (RFS), and Multifaceted Flash Sintering (MPFS), for the synthesis of high-entropy oxides (HEOs) with technologically relevant magnetic properties. Despite FS being first proposed in 2010, SFR in 2018, and MPFS in 2022, interest in this process has grown significantly in various scientific fields due to its considerable scientific and technological potential

These techniques enable the fabrication of ceramic materials at significantly lower temperatures and times compared to conventional sintering methods, achieved by applying a small electric current through the sample. Furthermore, the specific experimental conditions of Flash techniques allow the production of dense and nanostructured ceramic materials, which can be challenging using conventional methods. Importantly, Flash sintering not only drastically reduces the energy consumption required for ceramic material processing but also extends its applications to new materials for technological purposes. In this context, HEOs represent an emerging class of ceramic materials with equimolar compositions containing five or more cations. The uniqueness of these systems, first proposed in 2015, lies in their extreme chemical complexity coupled with simple crystallography, where atoms arrange in a relatively straightforward crystal structure, overcoming phase separations typical in heavily doped systems. In terms of the local structure, these materials consist of an unusually high number of distinct combinations of metal-oxygen-metal bonds, inherently affecting magnetic interactions based on factors such as coordination geometry, valence, and the types of surrounding metal cations. This results in a wide range of intriguing magnetic responses.

FOMAG proposes the utilization of FS, RFS, and MPFS techniques in producing HEOs with magnetic properties, capitalizing on the inherent advantages of these techniques, particularly in achieving high density in systems where this is particularly challenging.

PHOTOelectrocatalytic systems for Solar fuels energy INTegration into the industry with local resources

01-09-2023 / 31-08-2027

Research Head: Hernán Míguez y Laura Caliò
Organismo Financiador: Unión Europea
Código: HORIZON-CL5-2022-D3-02-06
Grupo de Investigación: Materiales Ópticos Multifuncionales

The PHOTOSINT project presents solutions to the challenges chemical industries are facing in integrating renewable energy sources into their processes. The project will deliver sustainable processes to produce hydrogen and methanol as energy vectors using only sunlight as an energy source and wastewater and CO2 as feedstocks, making the industries more auto-sufficient. The pathway is based on solar-driven artificial photosynthesis, and aims to develop new catalytic earth-abundant materials and modifications of existing ones to improve catalytic processes. Design parameters of the PEC cell will be tuned to maximize solar to fuel (STF) efficiency. Moreover to improve the conversion for industrial implementation, PHOTOSINT will develop a novel way to concentrate and illuminate the semiconductor surface to maximize overall energy efficiency. Perovskite solar PV cells will be integrated to harvest the light to supply the external electrical voltage.

PHOTOSINT is an ambitious project due to precedents in research conducted to date and the low production rate of the desired products. For integrating sunlight energy into the industry, the catalyst will be studied, and then the best one/s will be implemented in prototypes. The obtained results will be used for making scale-up in pilots with tandem PEC cells. These steps are necessary to assess the industrial scale-up feasibility, promoting the increased competitiveness of renewable process energy technologies and energy independence. MeOH and H2 will be tested in engines. Also, an HTPEM fuel cell will be used for electricity generation, and hydrogen will be tested as an alternative fuel for energy generation instead natural gas in melting furnaces avoiding CO2 emissions.

Development of flexible and high efficiency piezoelectric nanogenerators based on perovskite/PVDF nanocomposites

01-12-2022 / 30-11-2024

Research Head: Rocio Moriche Tirado
Organismo Financiador: Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación
Código: TED2021-131458A-I00
Componentes: Francisco José Gotor Martínez (ICMS), María Jesús Sayagués de Vega (ICMS), Rosalía Poyato Galán (ICMS), Ana Morales Rodríguez (US), Felipe Gutiérrez Mora (US), Ángela Gallardo López (US)
Grupo de Investigación: Reactividad de Sólidos

Application of advanced disinfection processes with nanomaterials in the reduction of impact from urban pressures in the framework of circular economy

01-12-2022 / 30-11-2024

Research Head: Rosa Mosteo Abad (UNIZAR) / Mª Peña Ormad Melero (UNIZAR)
Organismo Financiador: Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación
Código: TED2021-129267B-I00
Componentes: María Carmen Hidalgo López (ICMS), Francisca Romero Sarria (ICMS), MªPilar Goñi Cepero (UNIZAR) y Encarnación Rubio Aranda (UNIZAR)
Grupo de Investigación: Fotocatálisis Heterogénea: Aplicaciones

Water is one of the natural resources that, due to its limited and variable nature, both in quantity and quality, should be protected with special intensity, in line with the Environmental Objectives that support the ecological transition: sustainable use and protection of water and marine resources, circular economy, pollution prevention and control, and protection and restoration of biodiversity and ecosystems. Studies realized in collaboration with the Confederación Hidrográfica del Ebro, the urban point sources are the pressures that in most cases are the cause of non-compliance
with the environmental quality objectives established by the DMA. This non-compliance are mainly related to microbiological contamination in the receiving waters of these discharges.
Generally, as there is no legal requirement, wastewater treatment facilities do not include disinfection processes that reduce the microbiological load of effluents and, consequently, these agents are incorporated into natural waters, limiting the usemade of them, especially in supplying populations and recreational use (bathing and others). Likewise, such contamination in wastewater limits the possibility of its subsequent reuse, reducing the capacity to increase the availability of water resources. It is important to remark that, water reuse for agricultural irrigation can also contribute to circular economy by recovering nutrients from the reclaimed water and applying them to crops, by means of fertigation techniques. Thus, water reuse could potentially reduce the need for supplemental applications of mineral fertilizer.
Therefore, it is necessary to intensify the wastewater treatment efficiency by non-conventional processes that improve the treated water quality with the final objective of allowing a safe reuse of effluents, taking into account the regulation (EU) 2020/741. On the other hand, the control of more microbiological parameters is essential for a correct analysis of the technologies application. Aware of this need, the AySA group has been developing research projects for many years focus on the research about conventional and non-conventional processes, based on photocatalytic processes, applied for disinfection waters and about the microbiological control in urban wastewater treatment plants. The main objective of this project is to select the best technology for disinfection of treated urban wastewater for full-scale application by the improvement of previously studied advanced oxidation processes in the disinfection of these type of waters. Furthermore, the microbiological control, not only by bacterial indicators conventionally used but also protozoa and endosymbiotic bacteria that are inside amoebae, is consider very relevant in this project since to our knowledge, there are no studies investigating such a wide range of potentially pathogenic micro-organisms. This realistic approach is expected to minimise the impact on the receiving waters and increase the possibility of reuse, reducing the the health and environmental risk.

Design and selection of novel materials for the fabrication of high performance reversible solid oxide fuel cells

01-12-2022 / 30-11-2024

Research Head: Francisco José García García (US) / Juan Gabriel Lozano Suárez (US)
Organismo Financiador: Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación
Código: TED2021-132057B-I00
Componentes: Francisco José Gotor Martínez (ICMS), María Jesús Sayagués de Vega (ICMS), Yadir Torres Hernández (US), Isabel Montealegre Meléndez (US), Cristina María Arévalo Mora (US), Ana María Beltrán Custodio (US), Eva María Pérez Soriano (US), Paloma Trueba Muñoz (US)
Grupo de Investigación: Reactividad de Sólidos