Conot
National Institute of Chemistry

L02 – LABORATORY FOR THE SPECTROSCOPY OF MATERIALS


(Head: Prof. Boris Orel, PhD)

The main emphasis of the laboratory’s activities is on developing components for energy systems that utilise solar radiation:

-    Photoelectrochemical cells of the Grätzel type,
-    colour coatings for solar absorbers,
-    electrochromic (smart) optically switchable windows,
-    the photocatalytic decomposition of environmentally hazardous substances.

In parallel to these activities, we develop analytical and experimental approaches for a better understanding of the materials’ properties, such as their structure, optical properties (colour and thermal emittance) and their surface characteristics (plasma technologies and photocatalysis).


L05 – LABORATORY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES AND ENGINEERING


(Head: Prof. Albin Pintar, PhD)

The L05 has 11 researchers, 3 early stage researchers and 5 junior experts who primarily conduct research into the following fields:

- wastewater treatment through biological procedures and advanced oxidation techniques,
- the treatment of wastewater sludge from biological treatment plants,
- the treatment of industrial organic types of waste slurry and the production of alternative sources of energy (biogas, hydrogen),
- ecotoxicology and metrology in environmental protection.

Our studies in the area of wastewater treatment in modern reactor systems include the kinetics of eliminating organic substances and nitrogen substances in high concentrations of activated sludge. We also develop separation systems for treated water that still contains substances in suspension. Our ecotoxicological research involves developing and optimising methods for determining acute and chronic toxicity using physiological and biochemical biomarkers in aquatic organisms. We also develop chemical procedures and biological tests to determine the presence of endocrine disrupting compounds in water samples. Our metrological research is focused on the development of methodology for validating test methods, measurement uncertainty evaluation strategies, procedures for establishing the traceability of measurement results and reference measurements for providing reference values in proficiency testing schemes.


L07 – LABORATORY FOR POLYMER CHEMISTRY AND TECHNOLOGY


(Head: Prof. Majda Žigon, PhD)

The L07 is active in the following areas: 
- functional polymers and polymeric materials with special properties,
- the characterisation of polymers with advanced instrumental techniques,
- determining the correlations between the structure and properties of polymers, 
- the degradation of commercial polymers and biopolymers and the use of recyclates.



L09 – ANORGANIC CHEMISTRY AND TECHNOLOGY LABORATORY


(head: Prof. Venčeslav Kaučič, PhD)

Associates
Prof. Venčeslav Kaučič,
http://www.ki.si/raziskovalne-enote/l-09/sodelavci/prof-dr-venceslav-kaucic/
Associate Prof. Nataša Zabukovec Logar,
http://www.ki.si/raziskovalne-enote/l-09/sodelavci/izr-prof-dr-natasa-zabukovec-logar/
Assist. Prof. Nataša Novak Tušar, PhD
http://www.ki.si/raziskovalne-enote/l-09/sodelavci/nnt/
and
Alenka Ristić, PhD
http://www.ki.si/materiali-inzenirstvo-in-analitika/l-09/sodelavci/dr-alenka-ristic/

Areas of research:
The Laboratory for Inorganic Chemistry and Technology studies micro and mesoporous (aluminophosphate, siliceous and metal-organic) materials for storing heat and gases for use in catalysis and the pharmaceutical industry.
The emphasis is on the preparation of materials with the desired chemical composition for the chosen applications and their precise structural characterisation.

1. Heat storage through adsorption of water to microporous, mesoporous and composite materials using hygroscopic salts.
2. Gas storage through adsorption to microporous inorganic and metal-organic materials.
3. The application of porous materials in heterogeneous catalysis as the carriers of catalytic components with redox properties.
4. The study of mesoporous silicates as the carriers of active substances in the pharmaceutical industry.

Achievements
http://www.ki.si/materiali-inzenirstvo-in-analitika/l-09/dosezki-v-2009/


L10 – LABORATORY FOR MATERIALS ELECTROCHEMISTRY


(Head: Prof. Miran Gaberšček, PhD)

The laboratory’s area of activity includes the following materials for energy and information technologies:
- the study of transport kinetics and chemical composition changes in solid mixed conductors,
- the influence of nanostructuring solid composites on selected properties, such as electrochemical energy storage, dissolution, electrocatalysis etc. (with application in the energy industry, informatics and pharmacy),
- the preparation and characterisation of nanometre-sized coatings on functional particles,
- the preparation of nanometre-sized films on the external and/or internal surfaces of functional materials,
- the incorporation of functional materials into suitable matrices,
- the influence of surface charge on the stability of dispersions and suspensions; polyelectrolyte titrations.



L13 – LABORATORY OF CATALYSIS AND CHEMICAL REACTION ENGINEERING


(Head: Prof. Janez Levec, PhD)

The research group of the Laboratory of Catalysis and Chemical Reaction Engineering has achieved a world level in catalysis and chemical engineering. Their rich knowledge and experience, the interdisciplinary composition of the group and the modern laboratory equipment allow associates to perform experiments in different reactors, the most demanding characterisation of heterogeneous catalysts and the determination of quantitative structure-activity and structure-selective relationships (QSAR) in multiphase catalytic systems, as well as process planning.


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