23 Articles

01/04/17 - New home in Dresden

Photo of the Semperopera in Dresden at night.

After spending one month at the University of Paderborn working on fluorescence confocal microscopy and writing part of an invited review on gold nanostructures in liquid crystals, my short stopover in Paderborn is already over again. I want to express my gratitude towards Prof. Kitzerow for funding this stay in Germany, as it really helped me with my return to Germany.
From april on, I will be joining my wife in Dresden and look for a new job from here. Luckily, my wife recently found a senior researcher position at the Leibniz Institute for Polymer Research in Dresden and we already arranged for a decent place to live here. Hope I will also find a new position soon!

01/03/2017 - Goodbye Luxembourg / Hello Paderborn!


Chemistry builing at the University of Paderborn.

After two years of DISGONA research in Luxembourg the project funding has finished now, so it is time for me to move on. New funding for my research is still out of sight, but I am very grateful to Prof. Heinz Kitzerow from my alma mater for a short term employment at the University of Paderborn. I am looking forward to work in this very fruitful research environment!

Many thanks to my great colleagues at the UL for the great time in Luxembourg! I really enjoyed working with you!

15/02/2017 - JPCM Review online (Open Access!)

JPCM_Review now online!

Our topical review on Liquid Crystals in micron-scale droplets, shells and fibers is finally published online in the "Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter". In this manuscript, we outline the recent trend towards curved, soft and flexible interfaces in liquid crystal research. After a short introduction to the concepts of liquid crystals, we in particular focus on LC drops and shells or LCs enclosed by electro-spun polymer fibers. And the best thing is: The mansucript is published under Open Access license (Creative Commons 3.0)! So please enjoy reading the manuscript without paywall here!

21/09/2016 EMRS Fall Meeting in Warsaw, Poland

by Martin Urbanski 0 Comments


The fall meeting of the European Materials Science Society was held at the Warsaw University of Technology in September 2016. The latest research results and trends of material science were discussed in 27 parallel symposia. I am very glad for the opportunity of presenting my recent results on liquid crystalline nanocomposites to a large audience in the symposion E: "Organized Nanostructures and Nanoobjects".
I also made new contacts to researchers from France, Belgium, Italy and the Ukraine and I am looking forward to new fruitful collaborations in the future.
All in all it was a very successful conference for me, and I would like to express my gratitude towards the organizers of this great event!

31/07/2016 ILCC in Kent, USA


Entrance to the campus of Kent State University in Ohio, USA.

Certainly one of the highlights during this year was the 26th International Liquid Crystal Conference taking place in the birthplace of International Liquid Crystal Conferences at Kent State University in Ohio, USA. This conference allowed me to connect to and exchange with scientist from all over the world, and I am very grateful for numerous fruitful discussions and interesting presentations on all facets of liquid crystal science. I recieved good feedback for my own oral presentation on liquid crystalline nanoparticle dipsersions and I am also very happy about the high interest in my poster presentation on nematic shells.

Many thanks to the ILCS and the organizers of this great conference!

21/06/2016 - IRES Symposium in Luxembourg

IRES (International Research Experience for Students) is a NSF-funded project which allows US students to go abroad for first research experience. The 4th IRES Symposium took place in Luxembourg, with participants from the US, Germany and Luxembourg. This small symposium was a very good opportunity for me to contribute with an oral presentation about my simulation work done in the TOSCO project, initiate scientific discussions and evaluate new opportunities for collaborations.

30/05/16 - Physical Chemistry Colloquium in Stuttgart, Germany


Following the kind invitation by Prof. Frank Gießelmann, I presented the main scientific results from the DISGONA and DISCANT projects in the Physical Chemistry Colloquium at the University of Stuttgart. Besides the colloquium in the afternoon, I also was given the opportunity of scientific discussions with many professors from the IPC institute and was shown through its well-equipped laboratories.

I really enjoyed this day in Stuttgart and would like to thank Prof. Gießelmann and the whole IPC for the invitation and their kind hospitality.

20/05/2016 - Mathias MSc defense

by Martin Urbanski


Congratulations to Mathias Bourg for his successful defense of his Master thesis!
Mathias started his Master project in September 2015 and focused on the influence of nanometer-sized dopants on the molecular relaxation behavior of nematic liquid crystals. He has done a very good job in bridging the many issues that come together in this project and compiled them into a well-written thesis. The succesful finish of his Master project was the defense, comprising a 30 minutes oral presentation and a consecutive scientific discussion. Mathias did both very well, and we congratulate him for his success and wish him all the best for his future career!

05/05/2016 - Bunsentagung in Rostock, Germany


Bunsentagung 2016 held in the beautiful city of Rostock.

The annual "Bunsentagung" of the German Bunsen Society of Physical Chemistry took place at the University of Rostock this year, which was held under the main topic of "Basic Mechanisms in Energy Conversion". Unfortunately both sessions on Soft Matter did not create much interest among the participants of the conference, so I could give my oral presentation about our advances in the DISGONA project only for a small audience. Anyway, the organizers suceeded in creating a very interesting conference in a beautiful atmoshpere at the campus of the University of Rostock, and I really enjoyed participating this year's Bunsentagung.

Many thanks to organizers of this great conference and for many interesting discussions!

04/04/2016 - New article published in J. Mater. Chem. C

by Martin Urbanski


Our new research paper on nematic liquid crystals doped with gold nanoparticles was published online in the "Journal of Materials Chemistry C". The work entitled Nanoparticles dispersed in liquid crystals: Impact on conductivity, low-frequency relaxation and electro-optical performance sheds new light on the influence of nanoparticle doping on the dielectric and conductive behavior of the nematic host phase. We report that the main effect is an ionic contamination, which leads to electrode polarization and a deterioration of electo-optic performance. The liquid crystalline properties (e.g. dielectric anisotropy, order parameter) are, however, not affected by the presence of nanoparticles.