The Intelligent Materials, Structures and Instrumentation axis of the SYMME laboratory covers research activities ranging from synthesis to structural, thermodynamic and physical characterization of multifunctional materials and nanomaterials to instrumentation and control of complex mechatronic systems, including the implementation of active materials and/or electro-mechanically coupled structures for applications such as ambient vibratory and thermal energy recovery. In parallel, new acquisition systems as well as an analysis of human activities in the processes of piloting energy devices are progressively implemented.
Common to these activities is the development and use of so-called functional materials with multi-physical properties, so-called "intelligent" structures (from devices to the acquisition and processing of interaction data), and application areas related to energy and medicine.
The issues addressed in this section of research are as follows.
Quantify and determine the thermodynamic properties of metal alloys and oxides, especially at very high temperatures
Measuring thermodynamic quantities and establishing equilibrium diagrams between phases to ensure control of manufacturing processes and to promote the optimization of usage properties, for example in the fields of nuclear safety and electroerosion.
Develop non-centrosymmetric nanomaterials and quantify their non-linear optical properties
Develop multifunctional nanomaterials based on LiNbO3 for example, with a strict control of their size and morphology, quantify their physicochemical properties and in particular non-linear optical properties for applications in multimodal imaging (optical and MRI) for early diagnosis and theranostic applications thanks to the targeted and photo-triggered release of therapeutic agents to specifically marked malignant cells.
Design and optimize systems for recovery, transmission and conversion of micro-energy
Recover, convert, and store ambient mechanical energy over a wide frequency band (0-200Hz) using innovative devices (piezoelectric, electromagnetic, or electrostatic), in order to power and thus make autonomous sensors or small electronic systems (a few mW).
To develop electrodynamic power transmission systems allowing to power sensors without wires, through metallic walls or in the human body.
Optimising thermo-mechanical conversion for the valorisation of ambient thermal energy
Convert thermal energy (150°C) into electrical energy by means of Stirling micro-machines (displacement 1 mm³). To produce these micro-machines by collective manufacturing processes in order to reduce their unit cost and to assemble them in cluster allowing to produce a few kW/m².