Research Lines

The Foundation follows three macro research lines:

Additive Manufacturing, research on Graphene and the deposition of thin films.

These can also be defined as enabling technologies or KET (Key Enabling Technologies), considered fundamental for growth and employment, since they develop solutions or technological improvements through research experiences capable of revitalizing the production system.

 

Additive manufacturing

Within a dedicated department, FEA deals with the study and optimization of the PBF (Power Bed Fusion) additive production technology or the selective melting of successive layers of metal powder. Selective Laser Melting (SLM) and Selective Electron Beam Melting (SEBM) are part of PBF technology.

We take care of every step of production, the optimization of the hardware system (in collaboration with external companies) and the re-design of new components.

We have also developed, together with other partners, a new electron beam printer for which we have obtained the patent (Brev: 102016000082446).

Research on Graphene and Graphene Flagship

Graphene, currently among the most interesting nanomaterials, consists of a single layer of carbon atoms bonded together to form a hexagonal structure that can be easily modified and functionalized. Its exceptional properties make it particularly attractive for various application areas, such as sensors, photonics, biomedical technologies and electronics. Furthermore, the
development of innovative composite materials is one of the fields of choice both in terms of esearch and industry.

The space sector considers graphene to be a nanomaterial with great potential for specific applications. For example, the European Space Agency is involved in various projects aimed at evaluating an increase in the thermal performance of certain functional components, improving energy storage systems and using graphene inks for printing in space.

As a partner of the Graphene Flagship, we are conducting research on the development of metal and polymer composites for space applications.

Thin films deposition

The Foundation has been involved for years in the development of systems for the deposition of thin films and the development of complex materials through the use of PED (Pulsed Electron Deposition) and Sputtering technologies. For the evaluation of the devices we produce, we use filmetrics, XRD and SEM microscopy techniques.

Particular attention is paid to the production of energy from renewable sources. Thanks to the skills gained in the field of conventional and thin film photovoltaics, a patent proposal was also presented for a CIGS-based solar cell.