There is no doubt that solid state chemistry and materials science is one of the fastest expanding branches of chemistry. During the past years a rapid development of multi-component metal oxide ceramic materials, which are produced from fine-grained synthetic powders using new technology has to a large extent revolutionized both concepts and technology in the ceramic field.
The multi-component metal oxides exhibit a variety of outstanding physical and chemical properties, which include electric, magnetic, optical, mechanical, catalytic, and many many other different functions. It is as a consequence of their wide application that there is continued interest in the development of new synthetic methods for their production.
In recent years there has been a great deal of interest in the use of molecular species as precursors for the formation of multi-component metal oxide powders with carefully controlled morphology and composition. The sol-gel processing route to advanced glasses and ceramics is a way of manipulating molecular precursors to form bulk oxide materials.
Sol-gel chemistry not only offers an access to multi-component metal oxide ceramics and glasses with improved or new properties. The very mild reaction conditions, particularly the low reaction temperatures, also allow to incorporate inorganic and organic materials to each other. This led to a conceptually novel class of precursor materials composed of both inorganic and organic groupings.
Our research lies in the development of new sol-gel chemistry synthetic approaches for the preparation of advanced nanoceramic oxide materials.