The Seminar wil be held on 29 May 2014, room H, 15h, Physics Division building.
Title: High Pressure Physics and Synthesis of Novel Materials
Speaker: Dr. Mario Santoro
Istituto Nazionale di Ottica, INO-CNR, and
Laboratorio Europeo di Spettroscopie Non Lineari, LENS, Sesto Fiorentino
Abstract: Extreme conditions of high pressures (up to 400 GPa), often joined to high temperatures (300-6000 K) permits to unveil novel states of matter, to face traditional views on the periodic table,and to synthesize novel materials, which is of great interest for fundamental sciences, materialsscience and Earth and planetary science. I will review some achievements in these fields obtained in collaboration with my group, based on the use of the diamond anvil cell combined to laboratory and synchrotron optical spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction and X-ray spectroscopy. I will first show the cases of simple systems, which served for observing a rich variety of physical phenomena, such as pressure induced anti-ferromagnetism, molecular clustering, and insulator-to-metal transition in solid oxygen, metal-to-insulator transition in Na and Li, and “liquid-gas” transition in supercritical fluid Argon. I will then show transformations from molecular to extended, covalent solids in two more complex systems: carbon dioxide (Santoro et al., Nature 2006, PNAS 2012) and benzene (Nat. Mater. 2007). The case of a recently obtained CO2-SiO2 solid solution will be also reported (Santoro et al., Nat. Commun. 2014). Finally, I will report on polymerization of simple molecules such as ethylene and acetylene in zeolites, aimed to obtain novel nano-composites with interesting physical properties (Santoro et al., Nat. Commun. 2013).