Armand Soldera Ph.D.

Soldera, Armand
Position Department / Business Unit
Assistant Professor Chemistry Department
Institution Disciplines
Université de Sherbrooke Chemistry
City State / Provence
Country Website
Canada link
Fax

Research Interests

A longstanding problem in the study of Soft Matter, which includes polymers and liquid crystals, is the understanding of molecular arrangement. A concerted use of molecular modeling and experimental techniques can give insight to the microscopic interactions. Such a combination of simulation and experiencehas thus two principal aims: it allows the unveiling of molecular behavior that is at the origin of macroscopic physical property, and a better understanding of the microscopic interactions can be used to design new molecules with enhanced properties. To illustrate these two aims, two axes of research that are being investigated in the laboratory are presented.

Understanding of the glass transition. Poly (methyl methacrylate), PMMA, offers a particular benefit to the understanding of the glass transition since according to its chain tacticity, a different glass transition temperature, Tg, is exhibited. Consequently, such a variation could only be explained by changes in molecular characteristics. This difference was accurately simulated, some specific studies have been carried out. Differences between the PMMA configurations were noticed in the interaction energy, with some geometrical parameters, in the local dynamics and in the cooperativity between chains. For a better understanding of the phenomena related to the glass transition some studies are presently under investigation: a connection of the simulation data with present theories, the determination of the behavior of the two PMMA tacticities in thin films and molecular simulations of the Tgs of specific polymers, …

Design of new ferroelectric liquid crystals for non-linear optics. Some liquid crystals have the peculiarity to exhibit a macroscopic polarization that allows them to be aligned under an electric field. This particular polar order can lead to potentially nonlinear optical properties (applications in telecommunications, …). Nevertheless, a design procedure has to be initiated in order to gather together these two properties. A first molecule has thus be designed and synthesized. The data stemming from the characterization of this molecule will lead to an improvement of the design strategy, and also to a better understanding of the liquid crystalline phases.

Education

D.E.A. (1988) & Ph.D. (1992)

By this Researcher

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