Objectives and Areas

The activities of the group relate with ceramic materials working under stringent conditions of diverse kind, such as high loads, high temperatures, corrosive atmospheres, friction and wearing conditions. These events are common in many technological systems as gas turbines and engines, spatial vehicles, fusion reactors, etc.


The group has wide expertise in the following techniques/methods: Spark plasma sintering, Thermal diffusivity/conductivity, Wear and friction tests, Fracture and strength testing, Depth sensing (micro/nano) indentation methods, Robocasting, Thermal spraying and microstructural characterization (SEM, EDS, TEM, micro-Raman spectroscopy).


Our current objectives are focussed in three areas:

Cellular ceramics,

i.e. complex structures with high porosity and 3D assemblies using methods such as polymeric sponge replica and robocasting. A extensive range of applications, such as gas burners, catalytic supports, filters, heat sinks and exchangers, are feasible.

Development of multifunctional ceramic composites containing carbon nanostructures,

namely carbon nanotubes (CNT), graphene multistacks and graphene oxide (GO). Enhancement on toughness, strength or wear/friction resistance in conjunction with an added electrical conductivity or an increased thermal conductivity, induced by the carbon based nano-filler, are the aims of this research. Targeted applications are engine and turbine components, MEMS, sliding parts, etc.

Protective coatings for high temperature systems,

such as environmental barrier coatings (EBC) and self-healing thermal shields. Our activities comprise: powder engineering technology, coating deposition by flame spraying and ageing tests. Besides the main protective function, these coatings should be able to sustain mechanical and thermal loads without failing.