Graduated in Physics at Universitat de Barcelona (UB) in 1997, where also obtained his PhD (European Doctorate and PhD Extraordinary Award) in 2001. He also worked as Assistant Professor at UB. From 2009 to 2015 he was ICREA Prof. at Institut de Ciència de Materials de Barcelona, ICMAB-CSIC. Since 2015 he is ICREA Prof. at Institut Català de Nanociència i Nanotecnologia (ICN2) and Leader of the Advanced Electron Nanoscopy Group. Since 2017 he is President of the Spanish Microscopy Society (SME), was Vice-President from 2013 to 2017 and since 2009 he is Member of its Executive Board. He is Scientific Supervisor of the Electron Microscopy Transversal Area at ICN2 and BIST (The Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology). He has been awarded with the EU40 Materials Prize 2014 (E-MRS), 2014 EMS Outstanding Paper Award and listed in the Top 40 under 40 Power List (2014) by The Analytical Scientist. >290 publications; h-index: 57 (WoS); 65 (GoS).
The increasing interest in Materials Science, Nanoscience and Nanotechnology has created a serious global need for the development of nanoscopy tools in order to be able to observe and chemically analyze the synthesized nanostructures at atomic scale. Exploring the limits of physical resolution in advanced electron microscopy and understanding the ultimate behavior of materials at the nanoscale and their related properties are the central aims of our research. Our main research lines are:
1) Single atom recognition and localization in embedded quantum and nanostructures. From the atomic resolution data we obtain in the aberration corrected advanced electron microscopes we create 3D atomic models of the nanosystems studied. In this way, we can get full knowledge of the crystal structure, morphology and composition at the atomic scale allowing to understand the growth mechanisms of nanomaterials. We have been able to understand the mechanisms of the polarity-driven growth in free-standing nanostructures like nanowires, nanobelts, and tripods or 2D nanomembranes, or setting paths for the van der waals epitaxy growth mechanisms of semiconductor and oxide nanostructures.
2) Development of methodologies to perform a direct correlation between the structure and elemental composition at the atomic scale and the physical properties at sub-nanometer scale: the new advances in energy resolution in electron microscopy allows us to perform detailed in-situ studies of the photonic, plasmonic and even phononic properties of the nanomaterials, correlated to simulated theoretical models (e.g.: nanosystems for quantum computing, electronics and photonics).
3) Development of in-situ / in-operando experiments in the TEM to understand the physical and chemical phenomena promoting energy mechansims (e.g.: photoelectrochemical) with unprecedented resolution, allowing to correlate the theoretical models with the in-situ TEM and Synchrotron experiments.
Key wordsMaterials Science, Transmission Electron Microscopy, Nanoscopy, Nanotechnology, Electron Spectroscopy, photonics, plasmonics, phononics, single atom, atomic resolution