Text: Henrich Frielinghaus, Olaf Holderer and Rainer Bruchhaus, JCNS.
“Neutron Scattering on Nano-Structured Soft Matter: Synthetic- and Bio-Materials” has been the focus of this year’s JCNS Workshop, held from 5 -8 October at the Evangelische Akademie Tutzing on Lake Starnberg. The workshop was jointly organized by the Jülich Centre for Neutron Science (JCNS) and the Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC), San Sebastian, Spain. Financial support was gratefully received from the European r
More than seventy attendees from Europe, Israel, the United States and Japan, including eleven students, joined the event. Forty-two invited and contributed talks were given and sixteen posters were presented. Topics included functional polymers, complex dynamics, soft matter out of equilibrium, nano-composites and confinement, nanostructured complex fluids, membranes and proteins and, last but not least, soft matter materials for energy devices. An afternoon excursion to Linderhof Palace near Ettal along with the workshop dinner offered time for further discussion and a deepening of the scientific exchange between the attendees.
The workshop addressed a diversity of different topics to which neutron scattering has made significant contributions in the recent past. Neutrons provide a fundamental understanding of the structure and dynamics of materials, complementing information obtained with other techniques. Composite materials with soft and hard fillers or frameworks provide new pathways for designing advanced materials. Complex polymer architectures such as star polymers or ring polymers were highlights of the workshop. Insights into the functioning of intelligent and responsive materials such as microgels were presented. Among the biological applications, membrane proteins proved to be an outstanding topic of research, where contrast variation allows details to be studied to a degree unobtainable using other techniques. Soft matter materials for sustainable energy use is an emerging topic with huge potential for the future.
Save the date: The JCNS Workshop 2016 will be dedicated to hard matter materials covering different aspects of magnetism. It will take place in Tutzing from 4 – 7 October 2016.