Research in Agilio’s group is centered on the concept of designer liquid: a solvent, a reaction or separation medium, an electrolyte, a lubricant, etc. with properties tailored in view of applications in sustainable chemical processes and devices. Starting from an understanding of interactions, ordering and dynamics at the molecular level, the group’s work aims at explaining the properties of technological fluids, such as dissolving ability, miscibility, viscosity, or surface properties. The two main research topics are:
- Alternative solvents and reaction media for a greener and more sustainable chemistry, where a better understanding of physical chemistry of new, complex liquids is required for the development of cleaner processes. The group studies ionic liquids and eutectic solvents (DES) to perform separations and to use renewable biomass feedstocks.
- Interactions of liquids with nanomaterials, such as nanoparticles, nanotubes and atomically-thin two-dimensional materials (graphene, MoS2, etc.), with the objective of designing solvents for exfoliation and electrolytes for devices including supercapacitors, liquid-gated transistors and sensors.
The main field of research is molecular thermodynamics, a combination of molecular simulations and experimental physical chemistry to study interactions, structure and dynamics of fluids, materials and their interfaces.
Agilio Padua authored 150 publications that were cited about 10 000 times in the literature (h-index 47). One of his papers was cited more than 1000 times, twenty more than 100 times. Some of his positions and awards are:
- Rossini Lecture Award of the Int. Assoc. of Chem. Thermodynamics (2018).
- Senior Researcher Award, Division of Physical Chemistry, Soc. Chim. France (2017).
- Senior Member of the Institut Universitaire de France (2013).
- Visiting scholar in the Chemical Engineering Department of MIT (2014-15).
- Editor of The Journal of Chemical Thermodynamics (2005-).
- Head of the Thermodynamics and Molecular Interactions Lab, CNRS and Univ. Blaise Pascal Clermont-Ferrand (2006-16).
- Laboratoire de Chimie ENS Lyon
- agilio dot padua at ens-lyon dot fr