Meet our team

We have a true passion for science! Each and every one of our team members represents the committed spirit of our research activities!



Yury V. Kolen’ko
Principal Investigator




Laura M. Salonen
Staff Researcher




Juliana Sousa
Research Fellow




Olumide Ayodele
Research Fellow




Vanesa Romero
Scientific Associate




Jenni Jarju
Scientific Associate




Natália Vilaça
Research Fellow




Süleyman Kudret
Research Fellow




Zexuan Wang
Research Fellow




Nagendra Chauhan
Research Fellow




Liliana Gonçalves
PhD Student




Soraia Fernandes
PhD Student




Orlando Oliveira
PhD Student




Yasmine Ziouani
Research Laboratory
Assistant



Viviana Sousa
Scientific Associate




Bruna Gonçalves
Scientific Associate




Ana Lima
Scientific Associate




Magali Rego
Junior Research Fellow




Rajesh Reddy
Junior Research Fellow




Niklas Bennedsen
Visiting PhD student




About us:
We explore nanochemistry for the development and characterization of advanced catalytic, adsorption, thermoelectric, and electronic materials, addressing key challenges in clean water, low-carbon economy, and clean energy technology. We use a diverse range of methods, combining creative chemistry with cutting-edge nanofabrication.

We aim at understanding fundamental aspects of the synthesized nanoscale objects, specifically finite-size, surface and confinement effects, chemical doping, as well as their formation, nucleation and crystal growth. As experimentalists, we are also interested in testing the limitations of computational prediction.







Yury V. Kolen’ko

yury.kolenko[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Yury is currently the leader of the NANOCHEMISTRY RESEARCH GROUP at International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory (INL). His 15+ years of work in Inorganic Chemistry and Material Science has centered on synthesis, functionalization, and assembly of inorganic and hybrid nanomaterials for clean energy technology applications, such as catalysis, electrocatalysis, and thermoelectrics. Particular emphasis is placed on structure–property relationships in functional nanocrystals. Before joining INL, he spent 2 years at Tokyo Institute of Technology, 3 years at Fritz-Haber-Institute of Max-Planck-Society, and 2 years at University of Santiago de Compostela. He received his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2004 from M. V. Lomonosov Moscow State University.




Laura M. Salonen

laura.salonen[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Laura joined the INL in 2013 to work on the design and synthesis of covalent organic frameworks for adsorption applications. She is also involved in developing new organic chemistry strategies for the functionalization of nanoparticles. She carried out PhD research in the group of Prof. F. Diederich at ETH Zurich studying non-covalent intermolecular interactions in protein–ligand complexes. During her postdoctoral stay at LMU Munich she worked on the design and synthesis of different aromatic scaffolds with biological activity with the group of Prof. D. Trauner and with the group of Prof. T. Bein on the preparation of building blocks for covalent organic frameworks for photovoltaic applications.






Juliana Sousa

juliana.sousa[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Juliana joined INL in 2015 and is currently working on the development of adsorption technologies for the recovery of metals from industrial wastewater. She did her PhD in the field of heterogeneous catalysis, working on the preparation and characterization of carbon materials for environmental catalysis at the Associated Laboratory LSRE/LCM group at the Faculty of Engineering in Porto University. After her PhD, she joined the Functional Materials & Solutions team at Centre for Nanotechnology and Smart Materials, and gained strong experience in various scientific fields, such as synthesis and functionalization of inorganic materials and their incorporation onto several substrates, and the development of polymer coatings for automotive and construction industries.




Olumide Ayodele

olumide.ayodele[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Olumide is presently a Research Fellow at INL. His research focus is synthesis, functionalization and characterization of inorganic and hybrid nanocatalysts for clean energy technology applications. Prior to joining INL, he was a Senior Lecturer at the Chemical Engineering Department, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (UTP), Malaysia. During his Postdoctoral study he was a visiting Research Scientist to the Clean Energy Research Center, University of Yamanashi, Kofu, Japan. He is presently founding Associate Editor of Malaysian Journal of Catalysis and Editorial Member of The Open Materials Science Journal. He received his PhD, MSc, BEng from the University of Malaya, Malaysia, University of Science Malaysia and Federal University of Technology Minna, Nigeria, respectively.




Vanesa Romero

vanesa.romero[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Vanesa Romero is a postdoctoral researcher. She has obtained a postdoctoral fellowship from the Xunta of Galicia (Spain) in 2017. She joined INL in July 2017 where she is involved in the development of nanoporous materials (COFs-covalent organic frameworks). At the INL she is a member of both the Nanochemistry Research Group and the Water Quality Group. Her research will be focused on the preparation of highly accessible porous COFs with specific functionalities as active surfaces for the selective absorption of pollutants in the marine environment, such as biotoxins. She obtained her Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry, which received the extraordinary doctorate award, from the University of Vigo in 2016.





Jenni Jarju

jenni.jarju[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Jenni Jarju is a postdoctoral researcher. She has obtained a postdoctoral fellowship from the Magnus Ehrnrooth foundation (Finland) in 2018. She joined INL in July 2018 where she is involved in the preparation of porous organic cages (POCs) and covalent organic frameworks (COFs) for catalysis applications. Her research will be focused on design and synthesis of metallophthalocyanine-based POCs and COFs which can be used as catalysts in industrially important reactions, such as N-alkylation of amines with alcohols. She carried out her PhD research in the group of Prof. H. Lemmetyinen at Tampere University of Technology (Finland) studying design, synthesis and characterization of phthalocyanines, and phthalocyanine-fullerene dyads.





Natália Vilaça

natalia.vilaca[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Natália joined INL in September 2018 as a Research Fellow and she is working on the functionalization of nanomaterials to mitigate the impact of the biofouling in membrane-based water treatment technology. Natália has a graduation in Biochemistry and MSc degree in Chemical Analysis and Characterisation Techniques from University of Minho. Natália did her PhD in the field of nanomedicine, working on the preparation and characterization of drug delivery systems based on zeolite structures to be used in breast and colorectal cancer treatment at the University of Minho and Institut de Science et d’Ingénierie Supramoléculaires – University of Strasbourg.






Süleyman Kudret

suleyman.kudret[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Süleyman Kudret joined the INL in 2019 as a Research Fellow and he is working on the NanoLACCA project, on the development of nano-polymeric opaque and transluscent top coats to increase material protection and paint performance. Süleyman has a degree in chemistry and a MSc in polymer chemistry from Technical University of Braunschweig. During his Master he worked on synthesis and characterization of water-based PU-Dispersion derived from biomass. He did a Phd in organic photovoltaics at University of Hasselt, using Rieke chemistry in order to prepare functionalized co-polymers for the morphological stabilization of the solar cell devices. He has experience in industrial anti-corrosive , high heat resistant protective paint coatings formulation along with characterization, testing and application methods.



Zexuan Wang

Zexuan.Wang[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Zexuan Wang joined the INL in Feb. 2019 and he is working on the CritMag project, on the development and analysis of high-performance magnetic nanoparticles to enrich the knowledge of magnetic spring mechanism. He received his Ph.D in Materials Physics and Chemistry at Ningbo Institute of Material Technology & Engineering, Chinese Academy and Sciences. During his Ph.D, he focused on the fabrication and characterization of metallic permanent magnetic materials and their underlying physical mechanism of magnetism. He gained strong experience in the analysis for magnetic configurations of permanent magnetic materials, using Lorentz transmission electron microscopy. EBSD scanning electron microscopy, micromagnetic simulations.




Nagendra Chauhan

Nagendra.Chauhan[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Nagendra is working on the development of unconventional thermoelectrics based on self-organised binary nanocrystal superlattices. He holds a PhD in Engineering Sciences from CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, India, in the field of mid-temperature thermoelectrics materials for power generation. He worked on the design and development of high-performance and cost-effective materials and devices for thermoelectric energy generation. He was involved in materials metrology and standardization activities at CSIR-NPL, India. He also worked on numerical study of heat transfer behaviour in nanofluids using Monte-Carlo simulation. He is trained in metallurgical and non-destructive examination of structural failures by fatigue & wear.




Liliana Gonçalves

liliana.goncalves[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Liliana joined INL in 2016 to work on the development of adsorption technologies for the recovery of metals from industrial wastewater. She holds the degree of Integrated Master in Biological Engineering (2016) from the University of Minho. During her Master’s thesis she worked at INL, focusing on the synthesis of magnetic nanorods and their coating, physical and chemical characterization, and biofunctionalization for hyperthermia applications. While being a student, she took part in two research projects at the Biological Engineering Department at the University of Minho, related to effluent treatment with generation of energy and nanoparticle development for drug delivery applications.





Soraia Fernandes

soraia.fernandes[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Soraia joined INL in May 2016 to work on the development of nanoporous materials (COFs – covalent organic frameworks) through the self-assembly of building blocks for the adsorption of waterborne toxins. At INL, she is a member of both the Nanochemistry Research Group and the Water Quality Group. She has a graduation in Biochemistry and a Master degree in Medicinal Chemistry from the University of Minho (Portugal). During her Master’s thesis she worked on the synthesis of novel heterocyclic aromatic compounds (imidazole, and purine derivatives), their characterization and antiproliferative activity evaluation in cell line of colorectal cancer.







Orlando Oliveira

orlando.oliveira[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Orlando joined INL in July 2017 to work on the development of nanoporous materials (COFs – covalent organic frameworks) through self-assembly of building blocks. At INL, he works in close collaboration with the Nanochemistry group. He has a graduation in Chemistry and a Master degree in Medicinal Chemistry from the University of Minho (Portugal). During his Master thesis he worked on the synthesis of new pyridine based ligands for luminescent lanthanide complexes and in the study of their photophysical properties.










Yasmine Ziouani

yasmine.ziouani[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Yasmine joined INL in 2018 to work on the characterization and the testing of novel catalytic materials. She holds a bachelor degree in Chemistry from University of Science of Algiers in Algeria and a master degree in Organic and Polymer Chemistry from University of Bordeaux in France. During her master thesis, she worked on magnetic nanoparticles surface functionalization to develop translational nanoemulsions for medical imaging techniques. She also worked on the synthesis of plasmonic particles for ecotoxicological studies, and in the field of nanocatalysis for biomass conversion.








Viviana Sousa

viviana.sousa[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Viviana joined INL in April 2017 to work on the development of nanoinks for photovoltaics integrating the project “Large-scale printing of novel photovoltaics based on Cu(In,Ga)Se(2) chalcopyrite” (PrintPV). She has a MSc in Environmental Engineering from Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto (FEUP). During her Master’s thesis she worked on perovskite solar cells fabrication, optimization and characterization at the Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy (LEPABE). She has also experience in outreach activities related with environmental and engineering awareness.







Bruna Gonçalves

bruna.goncalves[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Bruna joined INL in 2017 to work on her PhD at the University of Minho and INL on Novel printable photovoltaic systems based on Cu(In,Ga)Se(2) chalcopyrite.
She has degree in Chemistry and a Master degree in Characterization Techniques and Chemical Analysis both obtained at University of Minho. During her master thesis, she worked on the development of printed piezoresistive sensors, using chemical and physical characterization, screen and spray printing techniques and fabricating piezoresistive sensors prototypes.









Ana Lima

ana.lima[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Ana joined INL in 2017 to work on the development, optimization and «green» printing of inks for electronic components and sensing devices, in the scope of her PhD. She has a bachelor's degree in Physics and a master's degree in Bionanosystems, both obtained by the University of Minho (Braga). Before joined INL, she worked at CeNTI (Centre of Nanotechnology and Smart Materials) as a researcher fellow in the project «WINNER: Smart window for zero carbon energy buildings».











Magali Rego

carina.rego[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Magali joined INL in 2018 to work on the project “NanoLACCA: Development of nano-polimeric opaque and translucent top coats to increase material protection and paint performance” in co-promotion with Tintas Lacca company. She holds a Master degree in Chemical Analysis and Characterization Techniques (2018) from the University of Minho and a Bachelor degree in Biochemistry (2016) from the same university. During her Master’s thesis she worked at Continental ITA, S.A. with the purpose of optimization and characterization of a new environmental-friendly adhesion solution for tire textile reinforcement. She also had the opportunity to be involved in several companies, one of them Bosch, S.A..





Rajesh Reddy

rajesh.reddy[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Rajesh has joined INL in March 2019 as a Junior Fellow in the Nanochemistry Group. His work mainly focuses on purification of indoor air by developing a product with nano sized layered coatings of photocatalytic materials. He was involved in assessing droughts and desertification at National Institute of Hydrology, India. He has completed his masters in environmental science and engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Dhanbad, India. For his master’s thesis he worked on full solar spectrum harnessing photocatalyst for degradation of emerging pollutants in water. He has also completed his bachelor’s in civil engineering and worked as a structural designer before opting to enter environmental sciences.






Niklas Bennedsen

niklas.bennedsen[at]inl.int  [at]=@



Niklas is a visiting PhD student from Technical University of Denmark (DTU) staying at INL from April 2019 until the end of June 2019. In his PhD project, he is synthesizing heterogeneous catalysts with single-atom metal sites for catalytic applications. During his stay at INL, he works with covalent organic frameworks (COFs), which are an excellent candidate to create single-atom metal sites and apply them for catalysis. His education started with a bachelor degree from University of Copenhagen in inorganic chemistry (2015) followed by a master degree at the Technical University of Denmark in heterogeneous catalysis under the supervision of Prof. Søren Kegnæs (2017). He continued in the same group as a PhD student.







Alumni:


Sara Barros




Udayabhaskararao Thumu




Tiago Marinho




Francesca Scalerandi




Elena Igonina




Anneloes Berghuis




Marek Piotrowski




Diogo Abreu




Vanessa Cardoso




Miguel Franco




Renato Gonçalves




Noelia González




Bryan Owens-Baird




Luiz Felipe Souza




Alice Boarino





Carlo Resini


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