- Statistical Mechanics
- Soft-Condensed Matter
- Colloid Physics
- Computational Physics
I work in the soft condensed matter field with focus on colloidal and polymer-based systems. I use theoretical (mean field) and numerical (Monte Carlo and Molecular Dynamics) approaches to investigate the collective behaviors of (appropriately developed models of) soft-matter systems. My broad-range goal is to design units with heterogeneously patterned surfaces in order to steer the self-assembly of materials with well-defined architectures and tunable properties.
Heterogeneously charged colloids
Models of heterogeneously charged units can be seen as patchy particles with differently charged surface regions (and thus referred to as inverse patchy colloids). These features characterize experimental model systems as well as naturally occurring systems such as proteins and virus capsids.
Anisotropic patchy platelets
Two-dimensional materials with tunable properties have important applications at all length scales, ranging from the molecular to the colloidal regime. In this framework, the interplay between the anisotropy of the building blocks and well-defined bonding patterns might open tantalizing new perspectives.
Numerical investigations in collaboration with Carina Karner
Conventional patchy particles are overall repulsive units with a fixed number of attractive regions acting as bonding sites; these bonding sites are fixed in a predefined geometry on the particle surface since they are due to the presence of chemical or physical surface patterns.