The Polymer and Composites Engineering (PaCE) group is a dynamic research team, founded in 2003 by Alexander Bismarck. PaCE is a multi-disciplinary team with expertise in the manufacturing and analysis of high performance composites, porous materials and hydrogels. Focus and application areas include the development of renewable green materials, biomaterials for applications in tissue engineering, composite super-capacitors and poly(HIPEs). Our research is highly inter-disciplinary, bridging the gap between basic chemistry, materials science, engineering and processing, with many diverse engineering applications. The overarching theme that unites the research interests accross the group is interfaces and colloids, engineering of reinforcements, polymers and complex structures, for example to improve adhesive interactions or induce bioactivity.

A Brief Scientific Genealogy of

Physical Chemistry of Materials & Materials Chemistry, University of Wien, Währinger Straße 42, A-1090 Wien (Vienna), Austria

This scientific genealogy starts after the reorganization of the 1st (1.CI) and 2nd Chemical Institute (2.CI) in 1959/60, i.e, after forming the Institute of Physical Chemistry (IPC), the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry (IIC), the Institute of Analytical Chemistry (IAC) and the Institute of Organic Chemistry. For a few representative institute members, research fields are indicated. It the early 1970s, IPC had 5 chairs (“Ordinariate”): H. Nowotny (Physical Chemistry), J.W. Breitenbach (Polymers), E. Broda (Biophysical Chemistry), F. Kohler (Chemical Physics) and R. Stickler (Materials Research). Over the next decade, after retirement or acceptance of an external call, only 4 chairs were kept: R. Stickler (Materials Research, 1971-98, Head: IPC 1996-97), F.K.→O.F. Olaj (Chemical Physics, 1978-2001, Head: IPC 1978-84 & 1998-99), J.W.B.→A. Neckel (Physical Chemistry, 1979-96, Head: IPC, 1985-96), E.B.→U.P. Fringeli (Biophysical Chemistry, 1984-2005; (founding) Head: Institute of Biophysical Chemistry (IBC), 2005-07). The chair concept in the organization of Austrian universities was abandoned with the “UOG 2002”.

F. Kohler (1924-2007), PhD with L. Ebert (Phys. Chem.), 1. CI, U. Wien, A, 1950

Postdoctoral position with O.K. Rice, Chapel Hill, NC, USA, 1954-56

Assist. Prof., Habil. (1959), Assoc. Prof. (1966):

1. CI/IPC, U. Wien, 1950-71; Professor: Chemical Physics, IPC, 1971-75

Professor: Engineering Thermodynamics, Ruhr University Bochum, D, 1975-89

Research fields: Molecular thermodynamics of fluids, pure and mixed (experiment and theory).

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E. Wilhelm (1941-), PhD with F. Kohler, IPC, U. Wien, 1969

Postdoctoral/Fulbright position with R. Battino, Wright State U., Dayton, OH, USA, 1969-71

Assist. Prof., Habil. (Phys. Chem., 1979), Assoc. Prof., Lifetime Assoc. Prof. (Austrian President, 1988): IPC, U. Wien, 1971-2007; Vice-Head: IPC, 1998-99 & 2006-07; Head: IPC, 1999-2005

Visiting Assoc. Prof.: WSU, Dayton, OH, USA, 1979-80; Visiting Prof.: Physical Chemistry, U. Salzburg, A, 1995 and 1996

Research fields: Molecular thermodynamics of liquids and gases (pure & mixed); statistical-mechanical theory; high-precision experiments: calorimetry (CP, HE), VLE, PVT measurements, mechanical coefficients, ultrasonics & hypersonics, diffusion coefficients.

H. Nowotny (1911-1996), Dipl.-Ing., Dr. techn. with: F. Halla, IPC, TH Wien, A, 1934

Private Assistant with F. Halla, IPC, TH Wien 1934-36

Assistant to L. Ebert, IPC, TH Karlsruhe, 1936-40; Researcher: Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut, Metals Research, Stuttgart, 1941-45; Institut de Recherches Métallurgique, Tettnang, D, 1945-47

Assoc. Prof.: 1.IC, U. Wien, 1947-52

Professor & Head: IPC, TH Wien, 1952-58

Professor & (founding) Head: IPC, U. Wien, 1958-77

Research fields: Structure & properties of solid binary & ternary systems, e.g. transition metals with group 14 elements (e.g. ZrSi2); defect structures, e.g. MnnSi2n-m (chimney-ladder phases). Transition metal borides (e.g. TiB2): high mp and superhardness (with Prof. R. Kieffer, Metallwerk Plansee, Reutte, Tirol, A).

R. Stickler (1931-), Dipl.-Ing., Dr. techn., TH Wien, 1958

Manager: Physical Metallurgy, Westinghaus Research Laboratory, Pittsburgh, PA, USA, 1958-71

Professor: Physical Chemistry-Materials Research, IPC, U. Wien, 1971-98; Head: IPC, 1996-97; Emeritus: 1998-

Research fields: Application-oriented materials science; semiconductors, high mp materials, superalloys; relation between microstructure and fatigue/fracture mechanics.

A. Neckel (1926-2018), PhD with: L. Ebert, 1.CI (supervisor F. Kohler), U. Wien, 1954

Assist. Prof., Habil. (Phys. Chem., 1966, mentor H. Nowotny): 1.CI & IPC, U. Wien, 1954-71

Professor & Head: Applied Electrochemistry, TH Wien, 1971-79

Professor: Physical Chemistry, IPC, U. Wien, 1979-96; Head: IPC, 1985-96; Emeritus: 1996-2018

Research fields: Thermodynamics of mixtures (liquid and solid), solid state theory, electrochemistry.

A. Brukl (1894-1967), Dipl.-Ing., Dr. techn., TH Wien, A, 1922

 Habil. (1925), Assoc. Prof.: TH Wien, 1940-48 Assoc. Prof.: 1.CI, U. Wien, 1955-60; Professor & (founding) Head: IIC, 1960-65

Research fields: Rare earth metals, their purifi-cation and separation.

K.L. Komarek (1926-2016), PhD with H. Nowotny, 1.IC, U. Wien, 1950

Researcher: Treibacher Werke, A, 1951-53

Assistant: TH Wien, 1953-55

Scientist, Assist. Prof., Assoc. Prof.: Metallurgy & Materials Sciences, NYU, USA, 1955-66

Professor & Head: Inorganic Chemistry, IIC, U. Wien, 1966-94; Emeritus: 1994-2016

Research fields: Properties of nonstoichiometric intermetallic compounds; structure and thermo-dynamic properties of liquid alloys.

H. Ipser (1947-), PhD with K.L. Komarek, IIC, U. Wien, 1974

Postdoctoral/Fulbright position with A. Chang, U. Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA, 1974-76

Assist. Prof., Habil. (1986), Assoc. Prof., Life-time Assoc. Prof. (Austrian President, 1993): IIC, U. Wien, 1974-98; Professor: Inorganic Chemistry, IIC, 1998-2004, (founding) Head: IIC-Materials Chemistry, 2004-15; Emeritus: 2015-

Research fields: Thermochemistry and phase diagrams of inorganic materials, properties of intermetallics, ordering in liquid alloys.

Working Groups at IPC (based on UOG 75) which were/are relevant for materials chemistry (and essentially formed after Prof. Nowotny retired)

Cf. Die Institute der Formal- und Naturwissenschaftlichen Fakultät, Außeninstitut der U. Wien 1992, 143 pages; Dean Prof. Dr. Wilhelm. Fleischhacker (initiated by E. Wilhelm)

Thermodynamics of Fluid Systems: E. Wilhelm. For a summary see above (and the home page)

Computer-Assisted High-Temperature Mass Spectrometry: A. Neckel, J. Tomiska. Knudsen effusion method coupled with mass spectrometry is a leading technique to obtain high-temperature component activities in alloys. KEMS is applicable from ca. 10 Pa to 10-6 Pa, up to ca. 2500 K. Solid State Theory and Surface Chemistry: A. Neckel, R. Podloucky, P. Herzig, R. Eibler. Titanium carbide TiC (mp 3430 K, superior hardness and stability) is important for producing cermets (used to machine steel materials at high cutting speed). Theoretical research focused on related Ti2N and very hard, high-mp Ti-Al-N compounds, and alloys, e.g. NiTi. Electrochemistry: A. Neckel, G. Nauer, H. Neugebauer, J. Theiner. Research on electrochemical reactions with classical methods and in situ IR- and Raman-spectroscopic methods, focusing on lead-acid & nickel-iron batteries.
Structural Chemistry and Magneto-Chemistry: P. Rogl, J.C. Schuster, K. Hiebl. They focused on 5 topics:
1) highly correlated electron systems, e.g. alloys of type Ce-Pt-Ge, 2) permanent magnets, 3) high-temperature superconductors, 4) superhard ternary compounds, and 5) quaternary titanium alloys.
Materials Research: R. Stickler, B. Weiss (Physics). See above.

In the 1980s, Stickler unsuccessfully tried to separate from IPC to form a new institute: Materials Research. In the mid 1990s, based on Neckel’s strong opinion, the relevant faculty commission suggested and Dean W. Fleischhacker decided that after Stickler’s retirement no professorial position for materials research shall be available at IPC. However, based on his international experience and as member of relevant commissions (structure and budget) in 1996 E. Wilhelm convinced the dean to nullify his former decision, and to reintroduce a professorial position devoted to Materials Chemistry (MC) within IPC after Stickler’s retirement: for our faculty this was the only decision reversal of this kind during many decades. Thus, after retirements of Neckel (1996) and Stickler (a few years later), two positions were kept at IPC: one for PC, and one for MC. Since Neckel insisted on a very narrow PC subfield to be associated with his succession, it was not approved by the Minister of Science, and the process had to be restarted several years later.

In 1997, Wilhelm (Head: IPC, 1999-2005), with the support of Stickler (Head: IPC, 1996-97) and several interested colleagues, introduced a new innovative curriculum comprising courses, seminars, laboratories, etc. for both PC and MC. This curriculum served as the basis for bachelor, master and PhD studies until 2008 (after retirement of Wilhelm in 2007), while Kautek was IPC Head (2005-2016).

Additional IPC Working Groups (based on UOG 75)

Chemical Physics: O.F. Olaj, G. Zifferer. Computer simulation of polymer systems.

Macromolecular Chemistry and Polymerization Processes: O.F. Olaj, I. Schnöll-Bitai: 1) Experimental kinetics of polymerization reactions, and 2) theory and numerical simulation of such reactions.

O.F. Olaj (1935-2019), Professor: Chemical Physics, IPC, 1978-2001, Head: IPC, 1978-1984 and again 1998-99. After his retirement this professorial position was removed from IPC

Femtosecond Spectroscopy: H. Kauffmann. Relaxation of optical excitations in polymers (fluorescence-trapping experiments, measurement of fluorescence depolarization) and computer simulations of excitation energy transport.

Biophysical Chemistry:

I. Development of Instruments: U.P. Fringeli. IR-ATR spectroscopy. II. Interaction of Local Anaesthetics with Model Membranes: U.P. Fringeli. Investigation via IR-ATR spectroscopy. III. Cyanobacterial Bioenergetics: G.A. Peschek. Physicochemical investigation of cytochrome c oxidase, a key enzyme in aerobic metabolism. IV. Molecular Biology of Cyanobacteria: G. Schmetterer. V. Regulation of intracell pH: H. Tromballa. Focus was on green algae chlorella and blue-green algae anacystis.

Computer in Data Treatment and Research: J. Tomiska, H. Neugebauer, J. Theiner, W. Schnöll, K. Kopecky.

Microanalytical Laboratory: J. Theiner. Represents a service group for all institutes.

Prof. W. Kautek (1953-), Dipl.-Ing., TU Wien, Dr.-Ing. with H. Gerischer, TU Berlin, D, 1980
Researcher: Fritz-Haber-Institut (Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Berlin) 1977-82; IBM Laboratory, San Jose, CA, USA, 1982-83; Siemens F&E, Erlangen, D, 1983-87; Bundesanstalt f. Materialforschung und –prüfung, Berlin, 1988-2004; Habil. (FU Berlin, Physical Chemistry, 1994)
Professor: PC, IPC (Nachf. Neckel) 2004-18, Head: IPC, 2005-16, Vice-Head: IPC, 2016-18
Prof. P.F. Rogl (1945-), PhD (Physics), thesis with H. Nowotny, IPC, U. Wien, 1971
Postdoctoral position: Oregon Research Center, OR, USA, 1974-76
Assist. Prof., Habil. (Phys. Chem., 1980), Assoc. Prof.: IPC, 1971-2004; Professor: MC, IPC (Nachf. Stickler) 2004-11, Vice-Head: IPC, 1999-2005. Research fields: Crystallography, structural chemistry, phase diagrams, high mp systems, alloys, refractories, magneto-electric behavior of RE compounds; current activities: Christian-Doppler Laboratory for Thermoelectrics, Vienna, A.

Prof. U.P. Fringeli (1939-2008) unsuccessfully tried to separate his group from IPC and form a new Institute of Biophysical Chemistry (IBC) while Prof. Olaj was IPC Head (1998-99). He tried it again in 2002 while Prof. Wilhelm was Head of IPC (1999-2005), and again in 2005, when the separation was carried out with the approval of Prof. Wilhelm: Fringeli became (founding) Head: IBC, and retired in 2007. Since 2008 his successor is

Prof. Annette Rompel (     ), Dipl.-Chem., Dr. rer.nat., U. Münster, D, 1993. Research fields: characterization of bio-molecules, XAFS with synchrotron radiation, emzymes.

Prof. A. Bismarck (1970-), Dipl.-Chem., TU Berlin, D, Dr. rer.nat. with J. Springer, Institute of Chemical Engineering/Macromolecular Chemistry, TU Berlin, 1999                                            

Postdoctoral position with R. Aveyard & J.H. Clint (Surfactants & Colloids), U. Hull, UK, 1999-2001; R & D Engineer, Sulzer, Winterthur, CH, 2001-02

Lecturer (Chemical Engineering), 2002-06, Reader (Advanced Materials), 2006-09, and Professor (Polymer Materials), Department of Chemical Engineering, Imperial College, London, UK, 2010-12

Professor: Synthetic Materials Chemistry, IPC, U. Wien, 2012- ; after separating from IPC he became (founding) Head: Institute of Materials Chemistry & Research, IMCR, 2014-

Prof. P. Lieberzeit (1973-), Dr. rer.nat. with F.L. Dickert, IAC, U. Wien, 1999

Assist. Prof., Habil. (Analyt. Chem., 2007), Assoc. Prof., IAC, 1999-2011

Professor: Analytical Chemistry, IAC, 2011-16. Transfer to IPC: February 2016, Professor: Physical Chemistry, IPC, 2016- , Head: IPC, 2016-

Research fields: Development of high-sensitivity sensor materials, ultrasensitive detection methods for virus and bacteria detection, molecularly imprinted polymers for diagnostics.

Prof. E.H.G. Mezger-Backus (1978-), Dr. with M. Bonn & A. Kleyn, Chemistry Dept., U. Leiden, NL, 2005

Postdoctoral position with P. Hamm (dynamics of small peptides and lipids with 1D & 2D ultrafast laser spectroscopies), U. Zürich, CH, 2006-08; with H. Bakker & M. Bonn (vibrational energy transport through model membranes), Research Institute AMOLF, Amsterdam, NL, 2008-12; Group Leader (structure and dynamics of water at interfaces), MPI for Polymer Research, Mainz, D, 2012-2014; Professor (Non-Linear Spectroscopy of Surfaces and Interfaces), Physics Dept., U. Amsterdam, NL, 2017-18

Professor: Physical Chemistry, IPC, U. Wien, 2018- , Vice-Head: IPC, 2018-

Prof. G. Trettenhahn (1962-), Dr. rer.nat. with A. Neckel, IPC, U. Wien, 1994

Assist. Prof., IPC, 1994- , Vice-Head: IPC, 2016-

Research fields: in situ investigation of surfaces and interfaces using IR spectroscopy.

Physical Chemistry of Materials & Materials Chemistry

 Prof. A. Bismarck: Materials Chemistry/Polymer and Composites Engineering (PaCE), IMCR, 2014- , (founding) Head: IMCR, 2015-

Research fields: Interdisciplinary, combining chemistry, materials science and chemical engineering in working on problems in interface and colloid science, and polymers and complex structures (renewable green materials, biomaterials for tissue engineering, water soluble polymers for turbulent drag reduction, polymer composites, porous materials, hydrogels, multifunctional materials).

Christian-Doppler Laboratory (CDL) for Thermoelectrics

CDL Thermoelectrics is a collaboration between TU Wien and U. Wien with partners from industry: Treibacher Industrie AG, Althofen, and AVL List GmbH, Graz.

Prof. P.F. Rogl (1945-), Head, 2012-, for details see above.

Dr. Gerda Rogl, Researcher

Dr. Andrij Grytsiv, Senior Postdoctoral Fellow