Rudolf Zahradník Lecture Series

Rudolf Zahradník Lecture Series is a honorary lecture series established in 2013 in honor of the President of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic and the founding chairman of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic. First year speakers of the prestigious lecture series were Prof. Josef Michl (University of Colorado and IOCB AS CR, Editor of Chemical Reviews), Prof. Andrey L. Rogach (City University of Hong Kong, Associate Editor of ACS NANO Journal), Prof. Mark A. Ratner (Northwestern University, Feynman Award in Nanotechnology).

Honorary Medal

Next

Prof. Paolo Fornasiero (University of Trieste, Italy)

Monday, October 16, 2017. 9:30 am
Assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

"Opportunities and challenges of well-defined nanocatalysts"


Abstract:

Heterogeneous catalysis has grown from an art to a science. Numerous catalytic materials are being proposed every day in the literature, with surprising and exciting new reactivities being disclosed, and interesting novel concepts being proposed. The study of catalytic processes starting from better defined materials that are tuned in morphology, composition and shape is opening new perspectives for catalyst design. For example, use of nanocrystals in CO oxidation turned out to be crucially dependent on the interfacial contact of the support (ceria) with the metal nanoparticle active sites [1], while valorization of biomasses were employed as reactants for catalysis by carbon-supported, Pt and PtCo nanocrystals (NCs) with controlled size and composition [2]. A particular type of structure is represented by nanosized core-shell phases, which proved to be superior catalysts in several catalytic reactions, such as methane combustion [3] as well as photocatalytic hydrogen evolution from biomass-derived substrates [4] or electrocatalytic water electrolysis [5] when integrated with multi-walled carbon nanotubes. Every day, nanotechnology applied to heterogeneous catalysts is creating new opportunities for important breakthroughs.

[1] Cargnello, M., Doan-Nguyen, V. VT, Gordon, T. R., Diaz, R. E., Stach, E. A., Gorte, R. J., Fornasiero, P. and Murray, C. B. Science 341 (2013) 771.

[2] Luo, J., Yun, H., Mironenko, A. V., Goulas, K. A., Lee, J. D., Monai, M., Wang, C., Vorotnikov, V., Murray, C. B., Vlachos, D. G., Fornasiero, P. and Gorte, R. J. ACS Catal 6 (2016) 4095.

[3] Cargnello, M., Delgado Jaén, J. J., Hernández Garrido, J. C., Bakhmutsky, K., Montini, T., Calvino Gámez, J. J., Gorte, R. J. and Fornasiero P. Science 337 (2012) 713.

[4] Beltram, A., Melchionna, M., Montini, T., Nasi, L., Fornasiero, P. and Prato, M. Green Chem. 19 (2017) 2379-2389.

[5] Valenti, G., Boni, A., Melchionna, M., Cargnello, M., Nasi, L., Bertoni, G., Gorte, R.J., Marcaccio, M., Rapino, S., Bonchio, M., Fornasiero, P., Prato, M. and Paolucci, F. Nature Commun. (2016) article number: 13549


Past

Arben Merkoçi (Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, Spain)

Wednesday, December 14, 2016. 10:00 am
assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

"Nanobiosensors for diagnostics: from plastic to simple paper-based platforms"


Presentation

Abstract

There is a high demand to develop innovative and cost effective devices with interest for health care beside environment diagnostics, safety and security applications. The development of such devices is strongly related to new materials and technologies being nanomaterials and nanotechnology of special role. We study how new nanomaterials such as nanoparticles, graphene nano/micromotors can be integrated in simple sensors thanks to their advantageous properties. Beside plastic platforms physical, chemical and mechanical properties of cellulose in both micro and nanofiber-based networks combined with their abundance in nature or easy to prepare and control procedures are making these materials of great interest while looking for cost-efficient and green alternatives for device production technologies. Both paper and nanopaper-based biosensors are emerging as a new class of devices with the objective to fulfil the “World Health Organization” requisites to be ASSURED: affordable, sensitive, specific, user-friendly, rapid and robust, equipment free and deliverable to end-users. How to design simple paper-based biosensor architectures? How to tune their analytical performance upon demand? How one can couple nanomaterials such as metallic nanoparticles, quantum dots and even graphene with paper and what is the benefit? How we can make these devices more robust, sensitive and with multiplexing capabilities? Can we bring these low cost and efficient devices to places with low resources, extreme conditions or even at our homes? Which are the perspectives to link these simple platforms and detection technologies with mobile communication? I will try to give responses to these questions through various interesting applications related to protein, DNA and even contaminants detection all of extreme importance for diagnostics, environment control, safety and security.

Prof. Toshiaki Enoki, PhD (Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan)

Monday, October 17, 2016, 12:15 pm
assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

"Molecular science of graphene nanostructures"


Presentation

Abstract

After the successful isolation of graphene (one-atom thick graphite) in 2004, graphene has become one of the central issues in nanoscience and nanotechnology. Among graphene derivatives, graphene nanostructure such as graphene nanoribbons, which can be obtained by cutting a graphene sheet in nano dimension, is one of the most exciting research targets, and it bridges between physics of graphene and chemistry of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon molecules, the former and the latter of which are based on relativistic quantum mechanics of massless Dirac fermion and aromatic sextet rule, respectively. And it differs essentially from fullerenes and carbon nanotubes belonging to the same family of carbon-based nanomaterials, as the former has open edges whereas the latter does not. Here the open edge plays an important role in its properties. When we cut a graphene sheet, there are two fundamental directions; armchair and zigzag directions. By cutting a graphene sheet and terminating the edge carbon atoms by foreign chemical species, we can create armchair and zigzag edges. Armchair-edged nanographenes are energetically stable due to the electron wave interference or aromatic stability, while zigzag-edged ones are unstable owing to the presence of nonbonding edge state localized in the vicinity of edges. The edge state is the important origin of various functionalities of graphene-based nanostructures. Physical and chemical properties will be discussed for graphene nanostructures.




Prof. František Švec (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory - University of California)

Thursday, June 9, 2016, 12:20pm
assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

„New trends on the preparation and application of porous polymer monoliths in chromatography”


Presentation

Abstract:

The modern monolithic columns emerged more than two decades ago. While the early polymer-based monoliths were used for the rapid separations of proteins, current literature describes a number of different applications in addition to typical liquid chromatography demonstrating versatility of the monoliths. For example, monolithic columns prepared using hypercrosslinking possess a large surface area in numerous mesopores and enable efficient rapid separation of small molecules. New chemistries are being developed to produce monolithic columns for the separation in various chromatographic modes. Modification of pore surface with nanostructures is another recent trend that extends applications of monoliths in the arena of highly selective systems. Recently, a new approach was introduced that enables functionalization of pore surface of monoliths and involves application of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). These frameworks are compounds consisting of metal ions or clusters coordinated to rigid organic molecules to form one-, two-, or three-dimensional that can be porous. We used two implementations: (i) admixing preformed MOF to the polymerization mixture followed by the thermally initiated free radical polymerization and (ii) forming the MOF within the pores applying layer-by-layer approach. Monoliths also serve as supports for immobilization of enzymes to form very active enzymatic reactors.

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Prof. Pavel Jungwirth (Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry AS CR, v.v.i)

„Unraveling the complex nature of hydrated electrons in conventional and non-conventional ways”

Tuesday, April 12, 2016, 11:30am,
assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

Presentation:

Abstract:

Interaction of water with ionizing radiation is, in addition to DNA damage, also important for nuclear waste treatment. Upon photoionization in water an electron and a cationic hole are formed, and we have followed the fate of both species. In the talk, I focus on the structure and dynamics of the hydrated electron which, despite its key role in radiative processes in water, has remained elusive. The traditional cavity model has been questioned recently, but the newly suggested picture of an electron delocalized over a region of enhanced water density is controversial. Here, we present results from ab initio molecular dynamics simulations, where not only the excess electron but also the valence electrons of the surrounding water molecules are described quantum mechanically. Unlike in previous one-electron pseudopotential calculations, many-electron interactions are explicitly accounted for. The present approach allows for partitioning of the electron solvated in liquid water into contributions from an inner cavity, neighboring water molecules, and a diffuse tail. We demonstrate that all three of these contributions are sizable and, consequently, important, which underlines the complex nature of the hydrated electron and warns against oversimplified interpretations based on pseudopotential models. We also investigate the electron solvated at the water surface. The present results clearly demonstrate that the surface electron is mostly buried in the interfacial water layer, with only about ten percent of its density protruding into the vapor phase. Consequently, it has structure which is very similar to that of an electron solvated in the aqueous bulk. Finally, we show how to follow solvated electrons upon dissolving sodium in water (yes, it is explosive!).

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Prof. Peter Sadler (University of Warwick)

„Precious Metal Anticancer Agents with New Mechanisms of Action”

Thursday, October 29, 2015, 12:15pm,
assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

Abstract:

Platinum complexes are the most widely used anticancer drugs. We are investigating the design of anticancer agents of other precious metals that might be effective against a wider range of cancers, have less side effects, a different mechanism of action, and therefore be effective against platinum-resistant cancers.

I will describe our research on low-spin d6 complexes of ruthenium, osmium, iridium and platinum. The activation of these inert complexes in cells can be controlled by the choice of the ligands and by irradiation with light. Attack on DNA can be switched to perturbation of the redox balance in cancer cells. Organometallic transfer hydrogenation catalysts induce both oxidative and reductive stress. We are adopting a systems pharmacology approach to elucidating mechanisms of action using genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic screening. Unexpectedly, our work on complexes encapsulated in polymer micelles for drug delivery has led to the observation of single metal atom dynamics.

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Peter Sadler obtained his BA, MA and DPhil at the University of Oxford. Subsequently he was a Medical Research Council Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge and National Institute for Medical Research. From 1973-96 he was Lecturer, Reader and Professor at Birkbeck College, University of London, and from 1996-2007 Crum Brown Chair of Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh. In June 2007 he took up a Chair in Chemistry at the University of Warwick and was Head of Department for 3 years. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE) and the Royal Society of London (FRS), a European Research Council Advanced Investigator, EPSRC RISE Fellow, and Mok Hing-Yiu Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Hong Kong. Recently he was Marlies and Hans Zimmer International Scholar at the University of Cincinnati, Davison Lecturer at MIT, Distinguished Lecturer at Roger Williams University, Rhode Island, Glenn Seaborg Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley, Australian Academy of Science Selby Fellow, and Swiss Chemical Society Lecturer.

His research interests are centred on the coordination chemistry of metals in medicine, in particular on the design of organometallic anticancer complexes, photoactivated chemotherapeutic agents, catalytic drugs, and the dynamics of precious metals at atomic resolution.

Web page: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/chemistry/research/sadler/

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Prof. Dr. Adi Eisenberg (McGill University, Canada)

„Block Copolymer Self-Assembly in Solution - a Morphological Wonderland with a Range of Potential Applications”

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Adi Eisenberg received his MA and PhD in 1959 and 1960, respectively, from Princeton University. He has been a Professor of Chemistry at McGill University since 1967, where he is currently Otto Maass Emeritus Professor. Prof. Eisenberg is a world renowned polymer physical chemist. His research interests include, among others, the exploration of block copolymer aggregates and their potential applications. Adi has been working in the field of block copolymers for more than 20 years. One of his papers (Science, 1995, 268, 1728) was the first to describe a systematic approach to obtain, in a controllable way, aggregates of multiple morphologies from amphiphilic block copolymers. This publication initiated a global effort in the systematic study of multiple morhologies in block copolymer aggregates, as well as their application in many fields, including drug delivery. Prof. Eisenberg published more than 400 papers (over 28.000 citations, H-87).

Abstract:

The self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers in solution offers opportunities to obtain a range of aggregate morphologies, mostly in the size range of 100 to 1000 microns. These include, as expected, spheres, rods, and vesicles, but, under appropriate conditions, also a range of other, sometimes unique structures can be obtained, some of which are remarkably bio-mimetic. Preparative methods are described which can be used to obtain the various structures. The morphogenic factors are emphasized, among them block lengths and block length ratios, pH, polymer concentration and the presence of additives. For some systems, morphological phase diagrams have even been obtained. Kinetic and mechanistic aspects of morphological changes also receive some attention. Finally, several examples of potential applications are given.

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Prof. Mario Ruben (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)

„(Supra)Molecular Quantum Spintronics”

Tuesday, May 20, 2014, 12:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

Mario Ruben was awarded his PhD from the University of Jena in 1998. The following three years he worked in a post-doctoral position with Prof. J.M. Lehn at the "Institut de Science et d'Ingénierie Supramoléculaires" (I.S.I.S.) in Strasbourg dealing with the self-assembly of functional molecules, particularly spin transitions systems. In 2001 he joined the Institute of Nanotechnology in Karlsruhe and he obtained the Habilitation (HDR) from the University of Strasbourg in 2005. His research interests include the design and the construction of molecular devices; in this field Mario Ruben currently leads several European network projects (www.biomach.org; FunSMARTs I and II, MULTIFUN). From 2013 he is a professor for Chemistry; Chair „Molecular Materials“, Karlsruher Institut für Technologie. He published more than 120 scientific publications, 9 Nature or Nature family of journals (~4.500 citations, H-37).

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Prof. Patrik Schmuki (Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg)

„Self-organized TiO nanotube arrays: Formation, Properties, Applications”

Wednesday, May 7, 2014, 12:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

Patrik Schmuki studied physical chemistry at the University of Basel and carried out his graduate studies at ETH-Zürich. Then, he worked at the Brookhaven National Laboratory, NY, USA, using synchrotron techniques for thin film studies. From 1995 he was a guest scientist at the Institute for Microstructural Sciences of the National Research Council of Canada where his research focused on surface phenomena in semiconductors. In 1997 he was elected Maitre d´Enseignement et de Recherche (Associate Professor) for Microstructuring Materials at the Department of Materials Science of EPFL in Lausanne. He joined the materials science faculty at the FAU in the fall 2000. He has published more than 440 scientific papers incl. Nature Materials, J. Am. Chem. Soc., or Angewandte Chemie (~17.500 citations, H-68).

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Prof. Rudolf Zahradník (J. Heyrovsky Institute of Physical Chemistry AS CR, Prague)

„Slovo o chemii u nás a ve světě”

Wednesday, March 26, 2014, 12:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

Rudolf Zahradník is Doctorat Honoris Causa of the Technical University of Dresden, University of Fribourg, Technical University of Pardubice and Georgetown University in Washington DC. He graduated from the Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague. He studied relations between structure and biological activity at the Institute of Occupational Medicine, applied quantum chemistry, theory of chemical reactivity and molecular spectroscopy at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the ASCR. In 1993-2001 he was President of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. In 1994 he was a founding chairman of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic. He was honored by many awards including Gold Plaque of J. Heyrovský for his achievements in the chemical sciences, Emil Votočka Medal of Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague, Charles University Gold Medal, Gold Medal of the Slovak Chemical Society.

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Prof. Wolfgang Lindner (University of Vienna)

„Chromatographic Resolution of Enantiomers on Chiral Ion Exchanger: Conceptional Reflections”

Friday, February 14, 11:00, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

Abstract:

Over the recent years the chromatographic resolution of enantiomers of very different chemical structure has become state of the art. In this lecture first the underlying stereoselective molecular recognition principles will be discussed followed by a focus on the enantiomer separation of chiral acids, bases and ampholytes using chiral ion exchange type stationary phases (CSPs) which we developed in our laboratory. As chiral template for selector development we selected the quinine and quinidine motif and systematically modified these pseudo-enantiomerically behaving moieties to reach optimised and dedicated chiral selectors to be then immobilised onto porous silica thus leading to the CSPs and chiral columns.

These novel materials proved to be particularly successful for the challenging resolutions of e.g. free amino acids, short peptides, etc. On the basis of such type applications we will further discuss the parameters influencing the retention and stereoselectivity characteristic of these CSPs being used in liquid (LC) and super critical fluid chromatographic (SFC) mode.

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Prof. Mark A. Ratner (Northwestern University)

Molecular Mesoscopics: Transport in Molecular Junctions

Monday, November 25, 9:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc

Abstract:

The two phenomena of electron transfer in molecules and electron transport through molecules are closely related to one another. Some of the phenomena exhibited in one of these areas can be mirrored in the other, but there are also differences. In this talk, we discuss the transport situation and different mechanisms for transport that occur under different temperature conditions and with different molecular structures. In particular, we will examine transport through more complex organic molecules than usual, and the interference phenomena that can result from cross-coupling, from meta linkages, and from simultaneous transport through more than one molecule. Emphasis will be conceptual (no complicated equations, no harping on methodology), and some concepts of physical organic chemistry, and their relationship to transport, will be addressed.

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Prof. Andrey L. Rogach (City University of Hong Kong)

„Functional Hybrid Structures of Semiconductor and Metal Nanocrystals”

Thursday, November 14, 12:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

Abstract:

Semiconductor and metal nanocrystals of different sizes, shapes and compositions can nowadays be synthesized in large quantities by inexpensive and versatile solution based approaches. They are attractive for use as building blocks in different functional nanostructures. We provide an overview of strongly emissive semiconductor nanocrystals as well as noble metal nanoparticles of different shapes synthesized in our labs and demonstrate several approaches for nanocrystal's assembly. Advanced optical spectroscopy provides important insights into fundamental photophysical properties of semiconductor nanostructures. Different application aspects of functional structures based on semiconductor and/or metal nanocrystals ranging from energy transfer structures to biological markers will be discussed.

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Prof. Josef Michl (University of Colorado and IOCB AS CR)
Editor of Chemical Reviews

“Alkylation of Gold Surfaces”

Thursday, October 10, 12:30, assembly hall of Faculty of Science, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc.

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