Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action ITN SynFoNY

Both industrial (BASF SE, HTE GmbH, d-Nano GmbH) and academic partners (Ghent University, University of Turku) will be working on the development and fundamental understanding of new ink formulations for industrial superconductor production. The project named SynFoNY (Synthesis & Formulation for Nanoparticle pinning in YBa2Cu3O7-x) will be supported by a European Industrial Doctorate grant, started in early 2017, and is set to enable the broader use of YBa2Cu3O7-x superconductors in a variety of challenging applications, such as generators for wind turbines.



The main objective of this SynFoNY program is to enhance the career perspectives of early stage researchers (ESRs) by providing the unique opportunity to be exposed to research and training in both an academic as well as an entrepreneurial industrial environment. This will be facilitated through the partnership between the SCRiPTS research group of Ghent University (UGent) and the industrial partner Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH (d-Nano), bringing together two widely respected research partners, active in the field of inorganic nanomaterials synthesis and coating development for thin film applications.

The involved partner organizations entered the project for specific added value in terms of industrial scaled synthesis of nanocomposite precursors and high throughput designs (HTE GmbH), new formulations and flow chemistry (BASF SE) and physical characterization of superconducting properties (Turku University, UTurku). This partnership will offer excellent multidisciplinary doctoral training opportunities for the ESRs in the scalable development of nanocomposite architectures with tunable properties and will foster a long-term collaboration.

This project specifically chooses Chemical Solution Deposition (CSD) as the cost-effective and scalable fabrication method for future superconducting nanocomposite coatings. CSD methods and the incorporation of preformed and inert multi metal oxide nanocrystals as pinning centers into the superconducting nanocomposite thin film are the innovative aspects compared to ongoing research. Knowledge in these fields will lead to a novel technology platform in BASFs (and its subsidiaries D-Nano and HTE) supporting new business areas and will train ESRs in multiple aspects of solid state chemistry, making them ready for involvement in breakthrough research which will extend well beyond High Temperature Superconductors research.

The candidates will not only take part in creating these new materials on the lab scale, but also be able to contribute to finding a new way of tuning the properties of nano-sized ceramic particles in a scalable flow process. Controlling the size, surface chemistry and agglomeration as well as the chemical composition of these systems will create benefits for the development of the three large types of nanomaterials, i.e. dielectrics, semiconductors and conductors. It will also make their processing safer and more sustainable.


These are the objectives of SynFoNY:
• Training of two ESRs on different technical and industrial aspects. 

  • Research objective for ESR1: Industrial synthesis, formulation and incorporation of preformed bimetallic nanocrystals in YBa2Cu3O7-x precursor solutions for the development of superconducting nanocomposites.
  • Research objective for ESR2: product and process development of industrial scaled deposition of superconducting nanocomposite architectures and their in-depth microstructural and physical characterization.

• The scalable development of nanocomposite architectures with tunable properties.

    Role of Ghent University

    Ghent University offers a day to day coordination with a research guidance and technical training. Prof. Dr. I. Van Driessche acts as promoter for ESRs students.




    Prof. Dr. Isabel Van Driessche
    Department of Chemistry
    Phone number: +32 9 264 44 33