Inorganic materials play a significant role in the performance of a lot of devices and equipments. In order to tailor a device property to its function, a good knowledge of the correlation between property and microstructure is required. Because the microstructure depends on the processing route, processing methods are decisive factors in developing new materials in order to produce components of complex shape with high reliability and low cost.

The objective of the project is to develop innovative nanochemical routes to engineer advanced inorganic materials. Therefore, this research project will focus on new routes for near-net shape forming and minimal energy expenditure. The work to be performed thus encompasses both fundamental research on the understanding and control of the synthesis of precursor entities, the so-called building blocks, to the more applied research of their processing into complex shape materials. The materials will be designed first on the nanometer scale by the use of well identified multi-metallic molecular precursors following a bottom-up approach starting at the molecular level, in presence or not of ordered nanoscale opened systems offering many opportunities for the design of complex functional systems via self-assembling or templating. Organization of the building blocks across several length scales is a key challenge in the design of advanced materials.

Chemical synthesis procedures will be developed to prepare the required (sub)nanometer-scale particles, and particle assembly and/or densification will be controlled to achieve the desired performances. The research will be subdivided into seven different Work Packages.