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Recently published article in PRR

Many congratulations to JungHyun, Jan and the team for the recent paper "Dynamic tuning of the director field in liquid crystal shells using block copolymers" published in Physical Review Research.

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Congratulations to Manos!

Many congratulations to Manos and the team for recent article "Responsive Photonic Liquid Marbles" published in Angewandte Chemie.


Anjali gets featured on FNR's Spotlight on Young Researchers!

Our Ph.D student Anjali Sharma was featured on FNR's Spotlight on Young Researchers blog! Laugh

Anjali works on forming liquid crystal shells and she works on trying to stabilize them using different surfactants and polymers.

Anjali and the team (Jampani, Nikolay and Jan from our group) + others from Prof. Ralf Stannarius's group in Magdeburg, Germany, observed LC shell behavior in a micro gravity environment made possible through several parabolic flights initiated in a plane provided by the German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Read about & see her experience here on the FNR's site: Spotlight on Young Researchers: Anjali Sharma

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Anjali’s PhD is funded by the FNR’s PRIDE programme in the framework of the Doctoral Training Unit (DTU) MASSENA, which has the goal to improve the understanding and the performance of materials used in sensing and energy harvesting


New Paper in Adv. Funct. Materials!

(Click the image above to read the article online, it is Open-Access)

to Rao & Jan on the new publication in Advanced Functional Materials: “Micrometer‐Scale Porous Buckling Shell Actuators Based on Liquid Crystal Networks”!

After collaborating with Dirk Jan last fall on LCE shells (pic below!) , the study describing the actuation in the porous network + a curious discovery of negative birefringence is finally out Laugh & open access.



TEDx UniLu is Approaching - Ideas Needed!


Our group is officially hosting the 1st ever TEDx event at the University of Luxembourg! The date for the event was just announced to occur on
Oct. 26, 2018! Laugh While we cannot actually give talks ourselves on our projects and perspectives, there's still plenty of opportunities for others to get involved in suggesting speaker ideas, or in applying to speak themselves.

Click here to see the official announcement from the university's team & to get more info!


New Paper in Adv. Materials

adv mater 2018 mat-jan
(Click the image above to read the article online, it is Open-Access)

to Matt & Jan on the new publication in Advanced Materials: “Cholesteric Liquid Crystal Shells as Enabling Material for Information‐Rich Design and Architecture”!

Matt is a long time collaborator of Jan's since his time as a professor at SNU in South Korea. Some of us in the group got the chance to meet him, but eventually we'll all see each other again in a few days when Matt stops by our lab. Originally an architect by training, Matt worked on (and is probably still working on) many interdisciplinary projects involving robotics, and functional architecture design. He is currently a professor at the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

In this new article Matt, Jan and a few other collaborators at the SNT (Security, Reliability and Trust) Centre in Luxembourg discuss the possibilities of using cholesteric LC shells as sources for information technology in various architecture, drone, and robotics concepts and applications.


New Paper in Nature Asia


(Click the image above to read the article online, it is Open-Access)

to Camila, Christina & Jan on the publication in Nature Asia Materials: "Fractionation of cellulose nanocrystals: enhancing liquid crystal ordering without promoting gelation" !

In a successful collaboration with Prof. Roland Sanctuary's group here at the physics & materials science research unit, this latest research on CNCs (cellulose nano crystals) describes in detail how controlling the fractionation of CNCs according to length can help in preventing the onset of gelation in solutions. The experimental results are discussed against what is already known regarding the aggregation of colloids based on the presence of counterions, and what still needs to be established in the field.

According to the authors: "Our results shine new light on the competition between liquid crystal formation and gelation in nanoparticle suspensions and provide a path for enhanced control of CNC self-organization for applications in photonic crystal paper or advanced composites."


New article on self-assembled nanowires from discotic liquid crystals

Our collaborator Giusy Scalia and her student Ji Hyun Park just published a beautiful study in Langmuir of studies by AFM and electrical conductivity on nanowires formed by spin coating solutions of discotic liquid crystals. Jan is a co-author because of his contributions in the analysis of the data. It turns out that the choice of solvent is critical for the structure formation, aromatic solvents like toluene and benzene leading to extraordinary long-range order, whereas films produced from solutions in chloroform or alkanes exhibited a very grainy and disordered morphology. Read the paper here.

Meeting in Seoul with Younghui Kim and Mathew Schwartz

In connection to Jan's trip to Korea for YooMee's defense, he took the opportunity to visit wearable technology artist Younghui Kim (Hongik University) and robotics artist/designer Mathew Schwartz (Advanced Institute of Convergence Technologies) to discuss their collaboration within the framework of Jan's ERC project INTERACT. Here the three are gathered in Younghui's fantastic studio in Seoul, surrounded by her artwork.

Three American guests

We welcome (from left to right) Michael Varga, Collin McGinty (both Kent State University) and Catherine Reyes (Cornell University) as visitors of the ESMP group from 21st of June to 26th of July 2014. Their visit is part of an IRES project managed by our collaborator Tony Jakli at Kent State University, including also Margaret Frey at Cornell and Ralf Stannarius and Alexey Eremin at Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg in Germany. While in Luxembourg, the three will be working on electrospinning core-sheath nano- and microfibers functionalized by low molar mass materials in the core.

Karin Cedergren, Chalmers, visits the GSCST

Dr. Karin Cedergren (center on photo) from Chalmers University of Technology in Göteborg, Sweden, is visiting the GSCST during May and June 2012, within the framework of the KSCNR bilateral Swedish-Korean research project on carbon nanomaterials (PI: Prof. Yung Woo Park, Department of Physics and Astronomy, SNU, head of the Nano Transport Lab). Karin will be working with Prof. Giusy Scalia (left on the photo; head of the Liquid Crystals and Nanocomposites Lab) and Prof. Lagerwall during her stay, as well as with the Nano Transport Laboratory of Prof. Park at Gwanak campus.

Two guest scientists from Sweden at the GSCST

Ms. Christina Schütz and Ms. Michaela Salajkova, Ph.D. students in Sweden at Stockholm University and the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), respectively, are visiting the GSCST during April and May 2012, within the framework of our bilateral project on nanocrystalline cellulose, involving the Swedish groups of Prof. Lennart Bergström (Stockholm University) and Prof. Lars Berglund (KTH) and the SNU-GSCST groups of Prof. Giusy Scalia, Prof. Yuanzhe Piao and Prof. Lagerwall.

Bilateral collaboration with Stockholm University on Nanocellulose

Based on a bilateral collaboration grant from NRF (Korea) and STINT (Sweden), the SNM lab will engage in a joint project together with the group of Prof. Lennart Bergström, Stockholm University, Sweden, entitled “New Functional Materials Formed by Self-Assembly of Nano-Cellulose”. The prime aim of the project, starting in the end of 2011, is to develop new and technologically attractive methods of using cellulose, the most abundant material on earth, as a low-cost renewable resource for novel nanostructured functional composite materials.

Ross Volpe visits the ESMP group


We have the pleasure to be hosting Ross Volpe, Ph.D. candidate, from Prof. Christopher Yakacki's group at the University of Denver, Colorado, USA, until August (the longest we've had a guest over yet!).
During his stay, he will mostly work with Rao on further advancing the actuation of micro shells & also start the development on actuating cylinders. We hope that these months will result in a great collaboration!


We hosted the TWISTED Conference!


On May 10-12, 2017, our ESMP group and the Theory of Soft Condensed Matter Group (headed by Prof. Tanja Schilling) organized and held the Twisted Conference, bringing together many of the leaders, and newcomers, in the CNC and lyotropic liquid crystal fields. There were plenty of useful and interesting discussions on the physics, applications, and chemistry of cholesteric LC phases developing in colloidal suspensions of chiral nanorods. We thank all of the participants for actively engaging in our 2nd (ever!) conference we hosted. Another success Happy

twisted group

Pictures for participants may be found our sister site:, using the password provided by Jan.