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INTERACT Summer School: Harnessing the Power of Interactions for Lignocellulosics Design

Updated: Aug 31, 2023

We are delighted to announce that FinnCERES Flagship is organizing INTERACT Summer School to uncover the power of interactions in the lignocellulosic materials. The Summer School will be held in Hotel Korpilampi, Espoo, Finland on September 4-8, 2023.



The course aims to give the participants insights into the chemistry and properties of lignocellulosics, focusing on how their interfacial interactions can be harnessed in advanced materials engineering. The course will explore covalent and non-covalent modification of lignocellulose components and give an overview of instrumental techniques for their characterization focusing on surface sensitive techniques. Furthermore, the course will provide a broadened understanding of the decisive role of interactions in various materials such as hydrogels, films, emulsions, and composites, to name a few. In addition, the course will highlight examples of current research on novel materials for the bioeconomy.


Practical information

  • Organizer: FinnCERES Flagship, Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

  • Organizing committee: Prof. Monika Österberg, Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin, Prof. Eero Kontturi, Dr. Jukka Hassinen, and Dr. Joanna Witos

  • Date: September 4-8, 2023

  • Venue: Hotel Korpilampi, Espoo, Finland

  • Registration: The event is fully booked!

  • Enquiries: finnceres@aalto.fi


Course information

  • Teacher in charge: Prof. Monika Österberg

  • Course level: Doctoral Candidates / Postdoctoral researchers / Late-stage Master students

  • Course: 3-5 ECTS

  • 3 ECTS: active participation in all lectures

  • 5 ECTS: active participation in all lectures, conducting the exercises during the course week and providing a learning diary. Deadline for submitting the learning diary is September 15, 2023.

Participation:

This 5-day course is organized at Hotel Korpilampi, Espoo. The participants are asked to stay on-site for the duration of the course in order to promote networking and enhance learning outcomes. The participants are offered a package comprised of accommodation at Hotel Korpilampi in shared twin rooms, bus transportation Aalto-Korpilampi-Aalto, meals throughout the week including breakfast, lunch, afternoon coffee as well as dinner. The package is offered in three price categories:

  • 500€ - for degree students and university staff until May 20, 2023

  • 600€ - for degree students and university staff after May 20, 2023

  • 800€ - for company participants (in addition to this package, the price covers charge of admission of application for non-graduate study right and course material)

  • Cancellation policy: In case sudden cancellation, please contact finnceres@aalto.fi without delay. Nonetheless, we will follow the cancellation policy of the venue. For instance, 10% of the participants can be cancelled without expenses at latest three days before the start of the course. Please note, that if we exceed the maximum number of cancellations, the possible expenses will be shared between the cancelled participants.

  • Note: The law on travel service combinations is not applicable to the packages described above, as the package is offered without pursuing financial gain.

  • The maximum number of participants is 50. The course will be organized when there are at least 25 participants.


Important: In addition to registration, company participants and university staff must apply for non-graduate study right. Please fill and submit the nongraduate-form (link) during the course registration. Without this non-graduate study right, you cannot have access to the course materials and participate in the lectures.


Learning outcomes

After the course, the participant:

  • Understands the power of interfacial interactions defining material performance.

  • Understands the length scale and magnitude of different interactions, including hydrogen bonds, ionic bonds, van der Waals interactions, and electrostatic double layer interactions, in dry or wet conditions and can accordingly estimate what interactions will be important for adsorption in aqueous media versus strength of dry composites.

  • Can utilize DLVO theory to predict how ionic strength will affect the swelling/bound water of unmodified or modified cellulose.

  • Can explain the working principles of quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring (QCM-D) and is able to calculate adsorbed masses based on QCM-D data utilizing Sauerbrey, Johanssman or Voigt models.

  • Understands the working principles of surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy (SPR) and ellipsometry, including advantages and disadvantages of the techniques.

  • Can describe the working principles of atomic force microscopy (AFM) and explain different modes of operation.

  • Can list different emulsion stabilization mechanisms and explain how various parameters affect emulsion stability.

  • Understands how emulsions can be used as templates for material design.

  • Knows the recent understanding of cell wall structure.

  • Is familiar with challenges and advantages of various lignocellulose modification routes.


Tentative program of the INTERACT Summer School


Monday, September 4


10:00 Travel to Korpilampi

11:00 Lunch


Day 1 : INTRODUCTION

12:15 Welcoming words

Prof. Monika Österberg and Dr. Joanna Witos, Aalto University, Finland

12:30 Introductory lecture: The structure of the plant cell wall – interactions within and

between the components

Prof. Eero Kontturi, Aalto University, Finland

14:15 Coffee break and check-in

15:15 Lignocellulosic surfaces - Fundamental aspects and surface forces

Prof. Torbjörn Pettersson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden

17:00 Sauna & pool

19:00 Dinner



Tuesday, September 5

Day 2 : INSTRUMENTAL TECHNIQUES


7:30 - Breakfast

8:30 Measurements of surface interactions and atomic force microscopy (AFM)

Prof. Torbjörn Pettersson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden

10:15 Break

10:30 Surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy

Prof. Tapani Viitala, University of Helsinki, Finland

12:00 Lunch

13:00 SPR demonstration, Bionavis

14:00 Quartz Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation (QCM-D) monitoring and Vapor Sorption

techniques

Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

15:30 Afternoon activities: at the venue there are many possibilities for afternoon activities,

e.g., volleyball, basketball, squash, gym, hiking, pool, mölkky

16:45 Coffee

17:00 QCM-D exercise

Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin and Dr. Katariina Solin, VTT Technical Research

Centre of Finland

18:30 Leisure time: Sauna & pool

20:00 Dinner



Wednesday, September 6

Day 3 : INTERACTIONS AND MODIFICATIONS


7:30 - Breakfast

8:30 Advanced structural characterization of lignocellulose systems by nuclear magnetic

resonance spectroscopy

Dr. Alistair King, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

10:15 Break

10:30 Interactions between (nano)cellulose and polymers - driving forces for adsorption

Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

12:00 Lunch

13:00 Interactions of lignin with media and how that affects nanoparticle formation and

applications like composites

Prof. Monika Österberg, Aalto University, Finland

14:30 Afternoon activities: at the venue there are many possibilities for afternoon activities,

e.g., volleyball, basketball, squash, gym, hiking, pool, mölkky

16:15 Coffee

16:30 Interactions of cellulosic materials with non-polar solvents – modification by non

-polar polymers

Prof. Eero Kontturi, Aalto University, Finland

18:15 Leisure time: Sauna & pool

20:00 Dinner



Thursday, September 7

Day 4 : APPLICATIONS


7:30 - Breakfast

8:30 Composites

Dr. Koon-Yang Lee, Imperial College London, UK

10:15 Break

10:30 Barriers and membranes

Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

12:00 Lunch

13:00 Hydrogels: Cellulose interactions in aqueous media and the effect on hydrogel

properties

Dr. Suvi Arola, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

14:30 Afternoon activities: at the venue there are many possibilities for afternoon activities,

e.g., volleyball, basketball, squash, gym, hiking, pool, mölkky

16:15 Coffee

16:30 Compatibilization

Dr. Koon-Yang Lee, Imperial College London, UK

18:15 Leisure time: Sauna & pool

20:00 Gala dinner



Friday, September 8

Day 5 : SUMMARY


7:30 - Breakfast

9:00 Stabilization of emulsions and their use in material design

Prof. Monika Österberg, Aalto University, Finland

10:30 Concluding remarks and work on assignment

Prof. Monika Österberg, Aalto University, Finland

11:30 Check-out

12:00 Lunch

13:30 Departure



Lecturers:

  • Prof. Monika Österberg, Aalto University, Finland

Professor Monika Österberg is a leading scientist in the colloidal lignin particle field. She has a polymer and surface chemistry education and over 15 years of experience in lignocellulosic nanoparticle research. Prof. Österberg is Head of the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems at the School of Chemical Engineering, Aalto University, leading the Bioproducts Chemistry research group advancing lignin valorisation with a focus on lignin nanoparticles, lignocellulosic nanomaterials, and surface functionalization and understanding surface interactions. In addition, she is co-research PI of the FinnCERES Competence Centre for Materials Bioeconomy, jointly formed with Aalto and VTT Research Centre of Finland. Her research aims to enhance the sustainable use of natural resources, with research interests in fundamental interfacial phenomena of forest biomaterials like lignin, cellulose and hemicelluloses, and the development of new materials from these polymers. She has over 130 scientific publications in the field.


  • Research Prof. Tekla Tammelin, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Tekla Tammelin is a research professor in biomaterials engineering at VTT, a FinnCERES PI and a docent in bioproduct technology at Aalto University. Her research promotes innovative concepts from lignocellulose aiming at future breakthroughs, including bio-based membranes for water/solvent filtration, immobilization templates for living cells, vapour responsive materials, hybridized nanolaminates and patterned optical structures. Her expertise encompasses the development of bio-based materials, especially nanocellulose and hemicelluloses, towards applications via understanding the structure-function relationships and the decisive role of interfaces.


  • Prof. Eero Kontturi, Aalto University, Finland

Professor Eero Kontturi has been heading a research group called Materials Chemistry of Cellulose at Aalto University (Finland) since 2014. He has a Ph.D. degree from Eindhoven University of Technology (The Netherlands) and has worked as an academic visitor in UPMC Paris (France), University of Vienna (Austria), and Imperial College London (UK). His research interest lies broadly within interfacial phenomena occurring in plant-based materials. More specifically, this includes new preparation and modification routes for cellulose and hemicellulose nanoparticles, cellulose/water interactions, cellulose degradation, and developing functional materials based on physico-chemical understanding of plant-based components.


  • Prof. Torbjörn Pettersson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden

Torbjörn Pettersson is an associate professor in fibre technology at KTH Royal Institute of Technology. His research is focused on wood and wood components mainly on cellulose fibres and cellulose fibrils. Studying the defibrillation process, fibril modifications, joint formation and compatibility problem related to incorporation of fibres and/or fibrils in composite materials and also on the usage of cellulose in new types of products. Major parts of his research have been dealing with surface interaction and surface modifications. Prof. Pettersson has a strong background in using and developing advance AFM techniques.


  • Prof. Tapani Viitala, University of Helsinki, Finland

Professor Tapani Viitala is a group leader of the Pharmaceutical Biophysics research group at the Faculty of Pharmacy at University of Helsinki. He has an extensive background in experimental studies and physico-chemical characterization of surfaces, interfaces, nanoscale layers and particle materials in close connection to material science, biophysics and nanotechnology. His main research focus is to utilize model surfaces, living cells, nanoscience and –technology, and various physico-chemical label-free characterization techniques (e.g., surface plasmon resonance, quartz crystal microbalance and time-resolved Raman spectroscopy) and well-established tools in life sciences to improve the mechanistic understanding of drug and nanoparticle action and delivery.


  • Dr. Koon-Yang Lee, Imperial College London, UK

Dr. Koon-Yang Lee is a Leader of the Future Materials Group at Imperial College London. His group develops chemical engineering-driven materials innovations with a focus on tailoring the interface between two (or more) phases to bridge the gap between chemistry, chemical engineering, physics, materials science and engineering. Their research focus is on the design and manufacturing of nanocellulose-derived high performance advanced materials, (ligno)cellulosic biomass-derived sustainable polymeric materials, engineering materials derived from waste, as well as lightweight porous polymeric materials.


  • Dr. Suvi Arola, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland


Dr. Suvi Arola did her undergraduate studies in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry after which she did her doctoral studies at Aalto University Applied Physics, and graduated in 2015. Currently, she is working at VTT as a senior researcher in biomaterials field. She has experience in nanocelluloses and their surface interactions with biomolecules and nanomaterials for 15 years.



  • Dr. Alistair King, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Dr. Alistair King works as Principal Scientist at VTT in the Functional Cellulose Team. His main focus is on the development of novel sustainable chemistries and solvents for homogeneous to heterogeneous modification of cellulosic substrates, e.g. nanocellulose, chemical pulps, regenerated films/fibres & aerogels. His core expertise includes wood structure, cellulose chemistry, NMR, nanocellulose, ionic liquids (and deep eutectic solvents), lignin, surfactants and a developing interest in computational chemistry (AIMD, MD & semi-empirical MD).







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