B-MRS Newsletter. Get ready for the XVIII B-MRS Meeting!


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The Newsletter of the
Brazilian Materials
Research Society.

Special issue:
Get ready for the XVIII B-MRS Meeting!

Message from the Chair

Dear attendees,

It will be a great honor to receive you in Balneário Camboriú-SC for the 18th Brazil-MRS Meeting, in the period of September 22nd-26th, 2019.

There is a remarkable list of top international plenarists, and 23 symposia in all scientific themes in materials science with high level of confirmed invited speakers. More than 2500 submitted papers, representing institutions of different countries and almost all regions of Brazil. This is a record in the history of the meeting.

We dedicated ourselves to offer you the best conditions for a productive period of science discussions and knowledge exchange in order to promote scientific cooperation.

I am looking forward seeing you in Balneário Camboriú.

With kind regards,

Ivan H. Bechtold – Chair

prof ivan

Useful information

Airport transfer. Do you want to book a transfer from the international airport of Navegantes or Florianópolis to Balneário Camboriú? You can contact by WhatsApp the booking desk of Guarupa (a Brazilian transportation app): +55 47 9130-9001.

Event venues. Due to the high participation and to ensure everyone’s comfort, the sessions and activities will take place in two hotels, 300 meters apart: Hotel Sibara Flat & Conventions and Mercure Camboriu Hotel. The opening session of the event will be held at the Cristo Luz Complex, one of the main tourist attractions in the city. Know more about the venues.

Shuttle to the opening session. There will be free shuttle service between Sibara Hotel and Cristo Luz Complex on Sunday 22 from 5 pm on. The complex is a 10-minute taxi/Uber ride from Sibara Hotel. It is recommended to arrive in advance.

Already registered participants. Participants who have already registered online can print their barcode to avoid queues. Access the event system with username and password, go to “Attendee” and “Print registration confirmation page”.

Onsite registration. Onsite registration remains open until the last day of the event at Sibara Hotel. B-MRS members have special discounts. You can become a member or renew your membership during the event’s registration and enjoy the special fees. See values.

Program. The program at a glance is available here. The presentation schedule, by symposium, is here. And the PDF file of the program book can be downloaded here. Changes in presentation times may still occur due to desistances. However, any changes will be updated on the online presentation schedule and app.

App of the event. The free app of the event is available at the official app stores of Android (Google Play) and Apple (App Store). Search “XVIII B-MRS Meeting” and download it to your smartphone. Features: schedule, maps, useful phones, personal schedule, QR code reader to access posters abstracts, and more.

Conference party. The party will take place on Wednesday 25, starting at 9 pm, at the lounge of the Green Valley Club, elected ‘The Most Prestigious International Club’ in 2013, 2015, 2018 and now 2019. The band of the party will be the “Brothers“. Tickets (limited) will be on sale for R$ 20 at the event secretariat from Monday 23.

Exhibitors fair. Visit the booths around the coffee break area, next to the secretariat, at Sibara Hotel!

Poster sessions. All symposia poster sessions will take place at Sibara Hotel, 17th floor, Adriatico room.

Students awards ceremony. The best students contributions presented during the meeting will receive prizes from B-MRS, ACS Publications journals and RSC journals. Prizes will only be awarded if the authors (students) are present at the ceremony, which will be held at the closing session of the event, on September 26 from 12:30 to 2 pm.

Memorial lecture. At Cristo Luz Complex (opening session).

On Sunday 22 in the opening session, at Cristo Luz Complex, Prof. Yvonne Primerano Mascarenhas (USP, Brazil) will give the B-MRS annual Memorial Lecture. Prof. Yvonne, a pioneer who led the introduction and development in Brazil of X-rays crystallography, will talk about the origins and panorama of this technique in the country. See our interview with her.


Plenary Lectures. At Sibara Hotel, 4C floor.

On Monday 23 at 8:15 am, Prof. Stefano Baroni (SISSA, Italy) will talk about color expression in natural pigments, a basic science issue wit direct impact in the food industry, which he has been addressing using computational methods. Prof. Baroni is recognized for having made important contributions to the development of computational techniques for the study of materials at the nanoscale. See mini interview.


On Monday 23 at 4:45 pm, Prof. Norbert Koch (HU, Germany) will present promising structures for optoelectronic devices, which combine inorganic and organic semiconductors. Prof. Koch is the author of industry-impacting insights about the basic mechanisms that govern optoelectronic devices performance. See mini interview.


On Tuesday 24 at 8:15 am, Prof. Antônio José Roque da Silva (CNPEM, Brazil) will talk about Sirius, the new Brazilian Synchrotron Light Source whose project and construction he has been leading since 2009. Sirius will be the largest and most complex scientific infrastructure ever built in the country and one of the first fourth-generation synchrotron lightsources of the world. Know more about Sirius.

roque da silva

On Tuesday 24 at 4:45 pm, Prof. Maria-Pau Ginebra (UPC, Spain) will discuss a new generation of bone graft biomaterials, made through nature-inspired methods, that bring together the advantages of natural and artificial bones. Prof. Ginebra has created a spin-off company to transfer the knowledge on these materials to “real life”. See mini interview.

maria pau

On Wednesday 25 at 8:15 am, Prof. Julia Greer (Caltech, USA), who is the author of seminal contributions to nanomechanics, will show a series of three-dimensional structures, based on innovatively engineered nanomaterials. Prof. Greer will share the synthesis, composition and amazing properties of her metamaterials. See mini interview.

julia greer

On Wednesday 25 at 4:45 pm, Prof. Mingzhong Wu (CSU, USA) will talk about a promising and yet enigmatic group of materials, the topological insulators. Prof. Wu will report his experiments on systems consisting of magnetic and topological insulators interacting between them, with interesting scientific results and potential applications. See mini interview.


On Thursday 26 at 8:15 am, the plenary speaker will be Prof. Maurizio Prato (UNITS, Italy), an expert in adding organic molecules to the surface of carbon nanomaterials, opening up possibilities of applications in segments such as nanomedicine and energy. In the lecture, Prof. Prato will show fascinating results of using carbon nanomaterials for neuronal growth and clean energy generation. See mini interview.


On Thursday 26 at 11:30 am, Prof. Alan Taub (U-M, USA), will address the integrated efforts needed to develop affordable lightweight components for vehicles. Prof. Taub has made a notable career in industry, culminating in the Vice Presidency of General Motor´s Global R&D.

alan taub

Other program highlights (free of charge for all event participants)

Sunday 22 from 1 to 5 pm at the 3rd floor of Sibara Hotel. Young Researchers School: How to Produce and Publish High Impact Papers. A tutorial by Prof. Valtencir Zucolotto (USP, Brazil) on high-impact research, writing and publication.

Tuesday 24, from 12:10 to 1:50 pm at Sibara Hotel, 3rd floor, Atlântico room. Material bonds: Brazilian-German exchanges in Materials Research. Representatives of German agencies will provide information on funding programmes and collaboration opportunities, and scientists working in the field of materials will share their experiences. Lunch boxes will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.

Tuesday 24 morning and afternoon at Sibara Hotel, 4C floor, Caspio room. Technical lectures. Companies in the field of scientific instrumentation will offer 13 technical lectures, 20 minutes each, on techniques and equipment for characterization of materials. See schedule.

Wednesday 25 from 12:10 to 1:50 pm at Sibara Hotel, 3rd floor, Persico room. Mastering the Art of Scientific Publication – ACS Publications’ Meet the Editors. A panel session about writing an effective paper, journal submission, review processes, and post-publication efforts with ACS editors. Lunch boxes will be distributed. Free registration in https://www.eventweb.com.br/xviiisbpmat/home-event/ (add/edit activities). Vacancies may have been filled.

Wednesday 25 from 12:10 to 1:50 pm at Sibara Hotel, 3rd floor, Atlântico room. Demonstration of ANSYS Granta’s software for materials research (CES Selector) and teaching (CES EduPack) with free software trial to all attendees. Lunch boxes will be distributed. Free registration in https://www.eventweb.com.br/xviiisbpmat/home-event/ (add/edit activities). Vacancies may have been filled.

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Royal Society of Chemistry put together a collection of paper of Brazilian authors in honour of XVIII B-MRS Meeting.

RSC_collectionThe Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) has prepared an online collection of articles by Brazilian authors in celebration of the XVIII B-MRS Meeting (Balneário Camboriú, September 22-26, 2019). The Royal Society of Chemistry is a supporter of this edition of B-MRS’s annual event.

Titled Materials and Nano Research in Brazil, the collection brings together 55 articles published in RSC journals between 2017 and 2019. All selected articles are open access until October 15, 2019.

The collection is available at www.rsc.li/brazil-mrs-2019

XVIII B-MRS Meeting: registration and program.

logo médioOnline registration for the XVIII B-MRS Meeting (Balneário Camboriú, September 22 to 26, 2019) is open.

Early registration (with descount) is open by August 2 August 9. Onsite registration at the event venue (Hotel Sibara) will be available throughout the meeting.

For participants of Brazilian institutions, B-MRS members benefit from additional discounts, and it is possible to become a B-MRS member or renew membership at the moment of meeting registration (online or onsite).

All registration fees are available on the meeting website: https://www.sbpmat.org.br/18encontro/#registration.


B-MRS Newsletter. Year 6, issue 6.


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Newsletter of the
Brazilian Materials
Research Society

Year 6, issue 6. July 8, 2019.

B-MRS News

XVIII B-MRS Meeting (Balneário Camboriú, September 22-26, 2019). The program of the event, at a glance, is already on the website. See here. Additionally, submission of extended abstracts to compete for student awards is open. Learn more about the awards here.

XIX B-MRS Meeting (Foz do Iguaçu, August 30 to September 3, 2020). The event will be held together with the International Conference on Electronic Materials IUMRS – ICEM. The event site is already online. See here. In addition, the call for symposia proposals for the event is open until October 31, 2019. Access the symposia submission form, here.

International Year of the Periodic Table. The International Union of Materials Research Societies (IUMRS), of which B-MRS is a member, endorses the International Year of the Periodic Table (UNESCO). Know more.

Featured Paper

A Brazilian scientific team has shown, through computer simulations, a way to control the electronic properties of a graphene sheet and its silicon-based substrate. The study, which was reported in Carbon, can contribute to the development of two-dimensional electronic devices. Know more.


Featured Scientist

We interviewed Leonardo Mathias Leidens, winner of the Brazilian national award for the best undergraduate research in the area of Exact, Earth and Engineering Sciences. This young student, recently graduated in Chemical Engineering and a PhD candidate in Materials Science at the University of Caxias do Sul (Brazil), has studied the adhesion of amorphous carbon films in ferrous alloys, culminating in an industrial treatment that increases adhesion, and a model of the physicochemical mechanism that generates the improvement. See our interview.

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News from B-MRS Members

B-MRS members are editors of a MRS journal focus issue on nanomaterials for biomedical applications. Know more.


B-MRS expresses deep regret over the death of Eloisa Biasotto Mano, Emeritus Professor at UFRJ (Brazil). Professor Eloisa died on June 8, 2019, at the age of 94. She was honored by B-MRS in 2015 with the “Joaquim da Costa Ribeiro Memorial Lecture”. See the biographical article about Professor Biasotto Mano published in the 2015 B-MRS Bulletin, here.

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(Balneário Camboriú, SC, Brazil, September 22 – 26, 2019)

Website: www.sbpmat.org.br/18encontro/

Program. The program of the event “at a glance” is online, with its technical and social activities. See here.

Awards for students. To apply for awards for undergraduate and graduate students (Bernhard Gross Award and ACS Publications Prizes), authors are required to submit an extended abstract by July 14. Learn more, here.

Registration is now open. More information, here.

Posters printing service. The poster file can be sent by email and later pick up the impression at the event location. Know more, here.

Venue. The meeting will be held in the delightful Balneário Camboriú at the Hotel Sibara Flat & Conventions, located in the center of the city, close to many hotels, restaurants and shops, and only 100 meters from the sea. More information, here.

Opening ceremony venue. The opening ceremony, the memorial lecture and the welcome cocktail will be held on September 22 (Sunday) at the Cristo Luz complex, one of the main tourist attractions in the city. There will be transportation to the venue, leaving the Hotel Sibara from 17:00 on. Know more about this place, here.

Memorial Lecture. The traditional Memorial Lecture Joaquim da Costa Ribeiro will be given by Professor Yvonne Primerano Mascarenhas (IFSC – USP). Know more about the speaker, here.

Event party. The party will be held in the lounge of the Green Valley, a prominent nightclub. Learn more about Green Valley, here. The party will feature the striking Brothers band. Watch the Brothers, here.

Host city. Balneário Camboriú (SC) is an important tourist destination that offers urban and wild beaches, ecotourism and adventure sports, boat trips, bicycles and cable cars – all within a unique landscape that combines mountains, sea and skyscrapers. The visitor has access to many options of gastronomy, lodging and shopping, as well as the bustling nightlife that stands out in the Brazilian scenario.

Lodging, tickets, transfers etc. Check the hotel options and the official travel agency of the event, here.

Plenary lectures. Leading scientists from institutions in Germany, Italy, Spain and the United States will deliver plenary talks on cutting-edge issues at the event. There will also be a plenary session by the Brazilian scientist Antônio José Roque da Silva, director of CNPEM and the Sirius project (new Synchrotron Light Lab). Learn more about the plenary sessions, here.

Symposia. 23 symposia proposed by the international scientific community compose this edition of the event. See the symposia list, here.

Organization. The chair of the event is Professor Ivan Helmuth Bechtold (Physics Department of UFSC) and the co-chair is Professor Hugo Gallardo (Department of Chemistry of UFSC). The program committee is formed by professors Iêda dos Santos (UFPB), José Antônio Eiras (UFSCar), Marta Rosso Dotto (UFSC) and Mônica Cotta (Unicamp). Get to know all the organizers, here.

Exhibitors and sponsors. 40 companies have already confirmed their participation in the event. Those interested in sponsoring/support can contact Alexandre at the e-mail comercial@sbpmat.org.br.

Reading Tips

– 2018 Impact Factors (2019 Journal Citation Reports): See the highlights of Wiley in Materials Science, here.

– Scientists acquire broad understanding of problems in the performance of lithium-ion batteries (used in smartphones for example) by analyzing the simultaneous behavior of thousands of particles that compose their electrodes (Advanced Energy Materials). Know more.

– Scientists grow 2D crystalline material following 3D curves and thus generate regions with differentiated optical properties. This discovery can be used to manufacture photon emitters and other electronics components of the future (Science Advances). Know more.


II Simpósio Multidisciplinar em Materiais do Centro-Oeste. Caldas Novas, GO (Brazil). August 7 – 9, 2019. Site.

20th International Sol-Gel Conference. Saint Petersburg (Russia). August 25 – 30, 2019. Site.

V Reunião Anual sobre Argilas Aplicadas. Franca, SP (Brazil). August 28 – 30 de agosto, 2019. Site.

21st Materials Research Society of Serbia Annual Conference (YUCOMAT 2019) and 11th IISS World Round Table Conference on Sintering (WRTCS 2019). Herceg Novi (Montenegro). September 2 – 6, 2019. Site.

XVIII B-MRS Meeting. Balneário Camboriú, SC (Brazil). September 22 – 26, 2019. Site.

XL CBRAVIC (Brazilian Congress on Vacuum Applications in Industry and Science). October 7 – 11, 2019. Site.

XII Brazilian Symposium on Glass and Related Materials. Lavras, MG (Brazil). October 22 – 25, 2019. Site.

19th Brazilian Workshop on Semiconductor Physics. Fortaleza, CE (Brazil). November 18 – 22, 2019. Site.

XIX B-MRS Meeting and 2020 IUMRS ICEM (International Conference on Electronic Materials). Foz do Iguaçu, PR (Brazil). August 30 – September 3, 2020. Site.

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You can suggest news, opportunities, events or reading tips in the materials field to be covered by B-MRS Newsletter. Write to comunicacao@sbpmat.org.br.



B-MRS member wrote about the future of Chemistry in Nature Chemistry at the invitation of the journal.

Aldo Zarbin
Aldo Zarbin

Professor Aldo Jose Gorgatti Zarbin (UFPR, Department of Chemistry), a member of B-MRS , is one of the 58 scientists in the world and the only one in Latin America who participated in a special paper on the future of Chemistry, published in Nature Chemistry in 22 March, on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the journal. Zarbin and the other scientists were invited by this  renowned scientific journal to write about the most challenging and interesting aspects regarding the development of their research lines.

Professor Zarbin works mainly in the synthesis of nanomaterials in liquid/liquid interfaces, their characterization and their applications in the generation and storage of energy, catalysis and sensors.

The special article in Nature Chemistry, which includes the vision of the Brazilian scientist, can be accessed here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41557-019-0236-7.

Reference of the paper: Charting a course for chemistry. Alán Aspuru-Guzik, Mu-Hyun Baik, […]Hua Zhang . Nature Chemistry, volume 11, pages 286–294 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41557-019-0236-7

New University Chapter established at UFPE.

UC at UFPE: tutor, board of directors (students) and some members of the unit.
UC at UFPE: tutor, board of directors (students) and some members of the unit.

The University Chapters (UCs) program of B-MRS  begins 2019 with a new member, the UC of the Brazilian Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE). With the creation of this unit, the program will have nine UCs distributed in the south, southeast, northeast and north of the country.

The interdisciplinary team of the new UC brings together 15 students (three undergraduate, five masters and seven doctoral students) from courses in Chemistry, Biological Sciences and Materials Science at UFPE. The tutor of the unit is Professor Petrus d’Amorim Santa Cruz Oliveira.

“What motivated us to create our UC was the need to explore the world of Materials Science, reinventing new ways to broaden and bring people from all parts, thus diversifying and strengthening our education more and more,” says Karolyne Santos da Silva, president of the UC. “Our highest expectation is to awaken young people to science, showing that there are possibilities to be innovative and have the opportunity to undergo new experiences with other researchers,” adds the doctoral student in Materials Science.

In the context of B-MRS’s UCs program, the team initially plans to hold a series of events: a holiday course, the 1st Meeting of Materials Science and Engineering of Pernambuco and annual workshops.

Get to know B-MRS’s UCs Program and the nine units it has so far in the states of Minas Gerais, Pará, Pernambuco, Piauí, Rio Grande do Sul and São Paulo: https://www.sbpmat.org.br/en/university-chapters/

B-MRS member is distinguished with the title of Professor Honoris Causa of the Federal University of Ceará.

Prof. Oswaldo Luiz Alves
Prof. Oswaldo Luiz Alves

Professor Oswaldo Luiz Alves (IQ – UNICAMP), a member of B-MRS, was awarded the title of Professor Honoris Causa of the Federal University of Ceará (UFC). The title was granted by the University Council of the institution on December 17, 2018. In addition to being a full professor of UNICAMP, Alves has been a collaborating professor of the Graduate Program in Physics of UFC for more than 30 years.

In October 2018, Professor Alves received another important distinction, the admission to the Brazilian National Order of Scientific Merit in the Grand Cross class.

Featured scientist: Prof. Heinz von Seggern (TU Darmstadt).

Prof. Heinz von Seggern.
Prof. Heinz von Seggern.

In the late 1970s, when he was a doctoral student, German scientist Heinz von Seggern came to Brazil for the first time and met some local researchers with whom he still collaborates. His host was Bernhard Gross, another German scientist who settled in Brazil and is considered a pioneer of materials research in the country. This was the beginning of a series of scientific visits of Heinz von Seggern to Brazil, which included the participation in five B-MRS Meetings, the annual events of the Brazilian Materials Research Society. In the last edition of the event, Prof. Heinz von Seggern gave a plenary lecture on ferroelectrets.

Heinz von Seggern graduated in physics from the University of Hannover (Germany) in 1976. He received his PhD degree in electrical engineering from the Technical University of Darmstadt (Germany) in 1979. His thesis advisor was Prof. Gerhard Sessler, one of the inventors of the electret microphone, the most common type of microphone in use today. After that, Heinz von Seggern became a postdoc and then a principal investigator at AT&T Bell Laboratories (USA). From 1985 to 1997 he worked at Siemens research center in Erlangen (Germany), starting as a principal investigator and then being promoted to department head. Since 1997, he is Full Professor at the Technical University of Darmstadt, where he leads the Electronic Materials Group.

Throughout four decades of scientific research, Heinz von Seggern has made important contributions to the field of materials in understanding fundamental phenomena, developing analysis techniques and applications, and inventing devices. He has published over 280 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals with more than 7.800 citations, and his h-index is 46 (Google Scholar).

See our interview with this scientist.

B-MRS Newsletter: – What motivated you to become a scientist and, particularly, a materials scientist?

Heinz von Seggern: – Already as a high school student my main interest was directed towards natural science. This passion was strongly motivated by one of my teachers who really understood to ignite my love for this field. So it was a natural thing for me to study physics, however, I always kept in touch with mathematics and chemistry. After finishing my diploma in physics at the Technical University of Hannover, I started my PhD work at the Technical University of Darmstadt in the electrical engineering department and two and a half years later I received my doctoral degree in electrical engineering. The following four out of five years I spend at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey, USA whose fabulous working conditions made my bonds to science even stronger. My path to materials science started with my return to the Corporate Research Laboratories of Siemens AG in Erlangen where I spend 12 years before being appointed as full professor at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany. In the time at Siemens my work was focused on more practical aspects of science which I started to be increasingly interested in. The ability to change and adapt material properties to practical demands, which is the basic task of materials science, fascinated me more and more.

B-MRS Newsletter: – In your opinion, what are your main contributions to the materials field? Please, select a couple of discoveries/developments, describe them briefly, describe the context in which they were developed, and share the papers or patents references.  

Heinz von Seggern: – Since I have been working on different subjects it is not so easy to point out my or our major contributions to the materials field. I will concentrate on one discovery or development in each field. Let’s start with my PhD study. My task was to understand the charge transport and electronic trap structure of Teflon FEP thin films to back up the lifetime expectation of electret microphones. I discovered by means of thermally stimulated discharge measurements that Teflon FEP contains two different types of energetically deep electron traps which are located near the surface and in the bulk of the films, respectively. This discovery was made possible by comparing TSD results of corona and electron beam charged samples whereby corona charging leads to filling of traps close to the surface and electron-beam charging allowed for deposition of charge into surface and bulk traps dependent on the utilized electron energy. From this finding a charge transport model was developed depending on the initial location of the electrons after charging. The model is based on trapping and thermally induced release. In case of corona charging the transport is initiated by a thermally induced release of electrons from surface traps and a subsequent capture and release by deeper bulk traps [Ref: H. von Seggern, J. Appl. Phys. 50, 7039 (1979), Heinz von Seggern, J. Appl. Phys. 50, 2817 (1979)]. The morphological reason for the different trap depth of surface and bulk can be seen in the film production process where different cooling rates apply to the surface and the bulk of the films.

After finishing my PhD degree I continued this research at Bell Laboratories investigating the transport of positive charges. In contrast to the electron traps, hole traps are relatively shallow and are distributed through the complete film. Once filled they empty relatively fast already at room temperature. On the other hand the number to energetically deep traps was found to be rather small resulting in a low capture rate. This implies that holes have a high probability to penetrate the film via hopping through shallow traps without being captured by deep traps which implies a rather low charge stability of Teflon FEP for holes. We were able to show that this problem can be circumvented by charging at high temperatures filling only deep traps [H. von Seggern, J. West, J. Appl. Phys. 55, 2754 (1984)]. This charge stabilization for positive charges recently became important with respect to so called piezoelectrets where by symmetry breaking a novel piezoelectric material was generated utilizing only nonpolar components. For these devices the stability of both charge types is essential.

During my time at the Corporate Research Labs of Siemens AG in Erlangen the field of interest changed to x-ray storage phosphors which are currently applied in so called image plates used commercially in x-ray diagnostics. The image plate thereby combines the classically utilized silver halide film and the intensifying screen where latter was applied to convert incoming x-rays to visible photons which are then detected by the photographic silver halide film. The working principle of the image plate is that by x-ray exposure electrons and holes are generated and trapped as F-centers and Vk-centers, respectively. Readout occurs by photostimulation of the electron and radiative recombination with the Vk-center. The released energy is then converted to a rare earth ion which emits light at its characteristic wavelength. Thereby the intensity of the emitted photons is indicative for the locally absorbed x-ray dose. My major contribution to this field was the discovery of the basic working principle of these photostimulable phosphors and the existence of spatially correlated and uncorrelated PSL centers which allowed for a deeper insight into the physics of storage phosphors [H. von Seggern et al., J. Appl. Phys. 64, 1405 (1988)]. Another contribution was the invention of neutron image plates fabricated by mixing an effective neutron absorber to the granular storage phosphor particles [T. Bücherl, H. von Seggern et al., Nucl. Instr. Meth. A333, 502 (1993)]. This technique is still widely used in neutron image detection.

After accepting the position as full professor in Materials Science at the Technische Universität Darmstadt I concentrated my efforts on the field of Organic Electronics which I already started at Siemens some years before. In the first years we focused on the energetic trap distribution of organic semiconductors. We were the first to experimentally prove the existence of a Gaussian trap distribution predicted earlier by Bässler et al. through Monte Carlo simulation. The experimental method used a refined thermally stimulated discharge technique known as fractional discharge, where a stepwise increase in temperature combined with the corresponding thermal release of charge allows one to determine the trap distribution which up to now is the only technique known to directly determine the distribution of traps  [N. von Malm et al., J. Appl. Phys. 89, 5559 (2001); R. Schmechel et al., Phys. Stat. Sol. (a) 201, 1215 (2004)].The largest scientific attention we received, however, for the invention of the organic light emitting transistor (OFET) based on tetracene and a polyfluorene derivative. In such OFETs it was shown to be possible to obtain ambipolar transport by injection of electrons and holes from source and drain, respectively [A. Hepp, H.von Seggern et al., Phys. Rev. Let. 157406, 1 (2003); M. Ahles, H. von Seggern et al., Appl. Phys. Let. 84, 428 (2004)].  It was also shown that the same ambipolar transport can be used to construct colour tunable OFETs [E. J. Feldmeier, H. von Seggern et al., Adv. Mater 22, 3568 (2010)] where the motion of the emissive recombination zone through the transistor channel is used to excite different overlaying organic semiconductors with different emission wavelength.

In the last years at TU Darmstadt I have revisited charge storage in organic polymers known as ferro- or piezoelectrets. The cellular polymer polypropylene has shown by Finnish scientists to exhibit large piezoelectric d33 coefficients after poling by high electric fields with the only disadvantage that the trapped charge turned out to be thermally unstable. Therefore structures changed quickly to Teflon based sandwiches of solid FEP /ePTFE/ solid FEP, where ePTFE is a highly porous PTFE consisting of up to 98% air, and later to completely air filled structures. My contribution to that field is the physics explaining the hysteresis and thereof the deduction of the maximal stable polarization which then allows for the theoretical deduction of the piezoelectric d33 coefficient for plane-parallel structures. This knowledge allows for the optimization of the piezoelectric effect and therewith increases the potential for future applications [S. Zhukov, H. von Seggern et al., J. Appl. Phys. 102, 044109 (2007); S. Zhukov, H. von Seggern et al., Scientific reports 8, 4597 (2018)].

B-MRS Newsletter: – Please make a brief story of your interaction with Brazil and with Prof Bernhard Gross.

Heinz von Seggern: – During my PhD work at TU Darmstadt Prof. Gross was a frequent guest of Prof. G.M. Sessler, my thesis adviser. Before my final PhD defense he invited me to visit the Institute of Physics of the University of Sao Paulo (USP) in Sao Carlos. Here I met all the people with whom I am still in contact and friendship with, namely Roberto M. Faria and Jose A. Giacometti who in the meantime have become established professors at USP. After finishing my PhD study I went to Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, NJ. where Profs. Gross and Sessler were welcomed guest almost every year. The collaboration was extremely fruitful and resulted in a number of joint publications. In 1984 I then left Bell Labs and started to work at Siemens Corporate Research on different topics for the next 12 years and naturally the collaboration was at rest. But as soon as I became appointed Professor at TU Darmstadt I revitalized my connection to the Institute of Physics of Sao Carlos, whose polymer group is now called Grupo de Polimeros “Prof. Bernhard Gross”. From that year on I visited initially Prof. Giacometti and later Prof. Faria almost yearly for up to two month financed generously by FAPESP through various programs. These stays were always very enjoyable and busy, and quite a few publications have resulted.

B-MRS Newsletter: – How many times did you attend the B-MRS Meetings? Do you remember when was the first time?

Heinz von Seggern: – In total I have attended five Brazilian MRS meetings starting in Natal 2007, Florianopolis 2012, Joan Pessoa 2014, Rio de Janeiro 2015 and again Natal in 2017. My first stay in Natal 2007 I remember especially since I was allowed to present our work in front of a great audience on the recently discovered light emitting organic field effect transistor and, on a more personal note, I also remember the wonderful Caipirinha my wife and me were enjoying every evening during sunset at the ocean side.

B-MRS Newsletter: – You have about 40 years of strong experience as a researcher. Please leave a short message with some advice for the students and junior scientists of our community. 

Heinz von Seggern: – In the context of scientific education Prof. Bernhard Gross once said to me: “For someone who knows nothing, everything is possible.” There is a lot of truth in these few words. We all tend to sometimes talk about things that seem to be obvious to us but in reality they are not. My advice therefore is, especially to young scientists, to always ask yourself whether you understand the physical and/or chemical grounds of your current research. If not I suggest to you to acquire the missing basics, which then allows you to select from “everything is possible” the physical meaningful trials. This will definitely help you to make the right decisions to continue your research in a meaningful way.

B-MRS Newsletter. Year 5, issue 10.


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Newsletter of the
Brazilian Materials
Research Society

Year 5, issue 10. November 9, 2018.
B-MRS News

The call for symposia proposals of the XVIII B-MRS Meeting (Balneário Camboriú, Brazil, September 22-26, 2019) will remain open until November 18. Groups of researchers from Brazil or abroad who wish to organize a symposium at the next B-MRS annual event should fill out a brief form by November 18. Know more.

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The University Chapters Program of B-MRS has a new coordinator, Professor Newton Martins Barbosa Neto (UFPA). Find out what are, in the coordinator’s view, the next challenges of this program that bridges the materials community of today and tomorrow, here.

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Featured Paper

A Brazilian team of Materials and Computer scientists has developed a computational tool (an artificial neural network) that is able to effectively predict an important property of glass that changes according to the composition of the material. The work was reported in the scientific journal Acta Materialia and should make the research work and development of glass faster and cheaper. Know more.

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Featured Scientists

We interviewed the authors of four doctoral thesis on materials topics (biosensors for disease detection and spectroscopy of materials with very low dimensions) who were selected to receive a Brazilian national award (the Capes Thesis Award). Meet these prominent newly graduated doctors and their scientific and social high-impact work, here.

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News from B-MRS Members

  • B-MRS founding member Sergio Rezende (UFPE) is the author of an article in the News & Views section of Nature on antiferromagnetic materials and spintronics, in which he reports on recent findings on the subject. See here.

  • B-MRS founding member Elson Longo (UFSCar and UNESP) and collaborators presented at the Congress of the Argentine Nation a device based on sensors developed by the team, which interrupts the emission of toxic and explosive gases when it detects dangerous levels in the environment – a problem that causes more than 250 deaths and 2,000 annual poisonings in that country. Know more.
  • B-MRS founding member Angelo Fernando Padilha (EPUSP) received the Felippe Carneiro Medal, a Brazilian distinction for personalities who stood out in the development of peaceful nuclear energy applications. Know more.

  • B-MRS member Victor Carlos Pandolfelli (UFSCar) is co-author of 2 of the 3 papers awarded in a conference of refractory materials held in Colombia. Know more.

Reading Tips

  • A couple of scientists that includes a young Brazilian physicist discovered the possibility of controlling electronic properties of graphene through electric fields (cover paper of Physical Review Letters). Know more.

  • Scientists mimic nature by producing peptide-based materials capable of forming and breaking down structures, thus changing their properties. The structures are particularly interesting for medicine (Science paper). Know more.

  • Using a supercomputer, scientists predict the properties of hybrid (organic-inorganic) two-dimensional materials of perovskite structure, intended for solar cells and LEDs (paper of Physical Review Letters). Know more.


  • 3rd International Brazilian Conference on Tribology (TriboBR 2018). Florianópolis, SC (Brazil). December 3 – 5, 2018. Site.

  • III Workshop on Environmental Nanotechnology. Sorocaba, SP (Brazil). December 5 – 8, 2018. Site.

  • II Simpósio Nacional de Nanobiotecnologia (IISNNB). São Bernardo do Campo, SP (Brazil). December 6 – 7, 2018. Site.

  • VII Curso de Análise de Minerais/Minérios pelas Técnicas de DRX e FRX. Fortaleza, CE (Brazil). December 10 – 14, 2018. Site.

  • XVIII B-MRS Meeting. Balneário Camboriú, SC (Brazil). December 22 – 26, 2019.

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You can suggest news, opportunities, events or reading tips in the Materials field to be covered by B-MRS Newsletter. Write to comunicacao@sbpmat.org.br.