Selected Research Highlights


May 2017 - CSIC press release

Un nuevo refrigerante magnético alcanza temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto

Un equipo del Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón (un centro mixto del Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas y la Universidad de Zaragoza) ha obtenido un nuevo refrigerante magnético combinando moléculas magnéticas con nanotubos de carbono. El material compuesto permite llegar eficazmente a temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto (-273,15°C) por medio de la refrigeración magnética. La investigación, publicada en la revista Materials Horizons, abre nuevas posibilidades en el campo de la criogenia a temperaturas muy bajas. [...]

Nota de prensa

Nota de prensa.

También en RTVE, EcoDiario.es, Siglo XXI, La Información, etc.


April 2017 - Physik Journal

Magnetism at the molecular scale

by Jürgen Schnack

Physik Journal

Whether the smallest data memory, qubit, coolant or medical contrast media - magnetic molecules promise a wide range of applications. This and the underlying quantum mechanics make molecular magnetism a highly effective field of research beyond the boundaries of the subject. Thus, a co-operation between chemistry and physics is indispensable, since the better one understands the magneto-structural connections, the more targeted molecules can be synthesized. But also from a purely physical point of view, research on magnetic molecules offers exciting questions.

Read more at pro-physik.de/[...]/Magnetismus_im_Molekuelmassstab.

Full text.


October 2015 - eldiario.es

Prueban técnicas experimentales para abaratar el coste de los equipos de resonancia magnética

Científicos del Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón (ICMA) han encontrado una alternativa a las aleaciones de tierras raras que se utilizan en los refrigeradores de los equipos de resonancia magnética.

Prueban técnicas experimentales para abaratar el coste de los equipos de resonancia magnética

El Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón, uno de los centros de investigación más antiguos de la región, que depende de la Universidad de Zaragoza y el Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), cuenta con 200 profesionales que desarrollan investigaciones punteras a nivel internacional. Una de ellas es la que realiza el Departamento de Materiales magnéticos, que, al igual que otros trabajos del Instituto, ha despertado ya el interés de grandes empresas. [...]

Enlace a la noticia.


October 2014 - University of Zaragoza - Press Office

Investigadores del ICMA revolucionan las técnicas de enfriamiento en aparatos de resonancia magnética, satélites o licuadores de hidrógeno y gas natural

Un equipo internacional de investigadores con científicos del Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón (ICMA, centro mixto del CSIC y la Universidad de Zaragoza) logra por primera vez enfriar por debajo de -272,15 grados Celsius (justo por encima del cero absoluto que es -273,15ºC) utilizando moléculas magnéticas.

Marco Evangelisti Elias Palacios

Enlace a la noticia.

Also highlighted by Heraldo de Aragón, University of Bielefeld, Science Daily, Phys.org, Science Newsline, ChemEurope, Agencia SINC, Vesti, G.I.T. Laboratory Journal, Gauss Centre for Superconputing, etc.

Downloadable PDF from the print edition of the Heraldo de Aragón (23/10/2014).
Downloadable PDF from the print edition of G.I.T. Laboratory Journal (March 2015).


October 2014 - Chemistry: A European Journal

Single-Molecule Magnets on the frontispiece

A new Zn-Dy-Zn single-molecule magnet has been prepared, in which the DyIII ion, that exhibits a DyO8 coordination sphere, is placed in an axial ligand field formed by two pairs of negatively charged phenoxide oxygen atoms in positions opposite to the DyIII ion and four neutral aldehyde oxygen atoms in the equatorial plane. This disposition leads to a strong easy-axis anisotropy of the ground state and to a high thermal energy barrier.

Link to Chem.: Eur. J. 20, Issue 44 (2014).

© 2014 Chemistry


March 2014 - Dalton Transactions

Chained SMMs get Dalton Trans. inside cover story

The linear [M(CN)2]- (M = Au, Ag) anions can be used as metalloligands in oxime-based Mn chemistry to afford 1D chains of [MnIII2] single-molecule magnets (SMMs).

Link to inside cover - Dalton Trans., 43, 4606 (2014).

Link to article - Dalton Trans., 43, 4622 (2014).

© 2014 Dalton Transactions


February 2014 - Angewandte Chemie

Molecular coolers get Angew. Chem. inside cover story

Molecular refrigerators consisting of unusual fourth-row metal-ion–lanthanide complexes with bridging fluoride ions are presented by M. Evangelisti, J. Bendix, and co-workers in their Communication. The combination of lightweight auxiliary ligands and tunable interactions by choice of metal ion makes these systems interesting modules for low-temperature cooling applications.

Link to Angew. Chem. Int.-Ed. 53, 2254 (2014).

© 2014 Angewandte Chemie


July 2013 - Nature Materials

Cool MOFs

Our publication "A dense metal-organic framework for enhanced magnetic refrigeration" by G. Lorusso et al., Advanced Materials 25, 4653 (2013) was highlighted by Andrea Taroni in Nature Materials 12, 688 (2013). Link.


June 2013 - Advanced Materials

Molecular coolers get Adv. Mater. front cover story

The front cover story of the June 4th issue of Advanced Materials features an experimental study of the magnetic stray field originated by molecular coolers deposited on a silicon substrate, by means of quantitative Magnetic Force Microscopy (qMFM) at liquid-helium temperatures. The artwork (see Figure) represents droplets of the molecular complex gadolinium acetate tetrahydrate on silicon.

An important activity in low-temperature physics deals with the development of new technologies, based on micron-sized devices (microchips) that could replace the complex and bulky refrigerators that are currently used. It is hoped that in a not-too-distant future such microchips can be used as cooling platforms in all kinds of experiments that require temperatures close to absolute zero, e.g., for gamma and X-ray detection in astronomy, materials science or safety instrumentation.

Magnetic refrigeration based on the use of molecule-based magnetic materials is among the technologies that compete in such a race. Each magnetic material shows a phenomenon known as the magnetocaloric effect (MCE), whereby the temperature varies in response to the application of an external magnetic field. Magnetic molecules can possess an extraordinarily high MCE in the temperature range close to absolute zero. Besides, the versatility of the molecules is such as to allow "anchoring" them to a surface, forming thin deposits or monolayers. This is a mandatory step for obtaining cooling microchips based on silicon (the ideal material for manufacturing the devices), capable of exploiting the features of such materials. However, to date, there was no experimental evidence that the molecules, once deposited on Si, would preserve their magnetic characteristics, and therefore, their ability to cool.

The material chosen is gadolinium acetate tetrahydrate, i.e., a molecular material characterized by a simple dinuclear core. The authors have deposited gadolinium acetate tetrahydrate on silicon, by Dip-Pen Nanolithography (DPN), and measured the surface magnetism at liquid-helium temperatures. The result leaves no doubt: the deposition process does not alter the excellent cooling power of the molecules.

© 2013 AdvMater

For further information, see: "Surface-confined molecular coolers for cryogenics", G. Lorusso, M. Jenkins, P. González-Monje, A. Arauzo, J. Sesé, D. Ruiz-Molina, O. Roubeau, and M. Evangelisti, DOI: 10.1002/adma.201370135.

Highlighted by the University of Zaragoza (link), and Aragón Investiga, europapress.es, SINC, lainformacion.com, Heraldo de Aragón, etc.


December 2012 - Investigación y Ciencia / Spanish Edition of Scientific American

Panorama > Moléculas que enfrían

por Marco Evangelisti, Agustín Camón y Olivier Roubeau

Nuevos materiales magnéticos de base molecular prometen avances en las aplicaciones criogénicas.

Enlace a la noticia.

© 2012 Investigacion y Ciencia

Investigacion y Ciencia

Texto completo.


March 2012 - TecnoEbro

Porous materials as 4 K regenerators for cryocoolers

"Los refrigeradores para temperaturas inferiores a 15 K (-258,15ºC) han adquirido una importancia creciente en los últimos 10-20 años convirtiéndose en herramientas esenciales para la investigación científica y contribuyendo cada vez más al bienestar de la sociedad. Es el caso, por ejemplo, de los sistemas de enfriamiento para los equipos de resonancia magnética en hospitales.", explican los investigadores del CSIC, Marco Evangelisti, Olivier Roubeau y Fernando Luis, del Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón. [...]

Tecnoebro

Boletín numero 17 (3/2012).


September 2011 - CSIC press release

Una molécula magnética logra actuar como una puerta lógica cuántica

A través de una reacción química, una investigación liderada por el Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) ha desarrollado una molécula magnética capaz de comportarse como una puerta lógica cuántica. Se trata de una de las aproximaciones "más sencillas y eficientes" de crear una de las piezas fundamentales para la fabricación de un ordenador cuántico. [...]

Nota de prensa

Nota de prensa.

También en europapress.es, menéame, Taringa!, Tendencias 21, Diario SIGLO XXI, RDi Press, lainformacion.com, etc.


July 2011 - CienciaEs.com (Radio streaming / podcast)

Hablando con Científicos

por y con Ángel Rodríguez Lozano

Nuevo material para refrigerar a temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto: Investigadores del CSIC en el Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Aragón y la Universidad de Zaragoza han creado un material magnético que permite refrigerar a temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto (-273,15ºC). Hablamos con Marco Evangelisti y Agustín Camón.

Enlace a la noticia/podcast.
Descarga de la grabación de la entrevista en MP3 (28 Mb y duración de 1 hora).


June 2011 - CSIC press release

Identificado un nuevo material molecular para refrigerar a temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto

Una investigación liderada por el Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) ha identificado un nuevo material magnético de base molecular, el acetato de gadolinio tetrahidrato, que permite refrigerar a temperaturas cercanas al cero absoluto (-273,15ºC) a un coste mucho menor que los materiales empleados actualmente. Las conclusiones del estudio, publicado en la revista Angewandte Chemie, ofrecen nuevas posibilidades en el campo de la criogenia.

Nota de prensa

Nota de prensa.

También en Agencia EFE, ABC, La Vanguardia, Diario SIGLO XXI, Publico, El Periodico de Aragón, madri+d, El Día, AsturiasMundial, El Correo Gallego, Interempresas, Informe21, El Economista, La Información, DICyT, Canarias7, etc.

Entrevista a Marco Evangelisti en el programa de divulgación científica "Partiendo de Cero" con Paco de León en Radio Onda Cero, emisión del 19 de junio 2011. Descarga de la grabación de la entrevista en MP3 (14 Mb).


June 2011 - Angewandte Chemie

Gd2 molecular cooler gets VIP status and back-cover story

By taking advantage of a relatively high magnetic density combined with a dominant ferromagnetism, gadolinium acetate tetrahydrate displays an unprecedentedly large cryogenic magnetocaloric effect. The remarkable temperature drops, reported by M. Evangelisti and co-workers in their Communication (DOI: 10.1002/anie.201102640), suggest that this molecular nanomagnet can be efficiently employed as a magnetic refrigerant for low-temperature applications (picture by O. Roubeau).

Link to back cover.

Marco Evangelisti Olivier Roubeau


May 2011 - ALSNews from Advanced Light Source, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory

Cool magnetic molecules

Certain materials are known to heat up or cool down when they are exposed to a changing magnetic field. This is known as the magnetocaloric effect. All magnetic materials exhibit this effect, but in most cases, it is too small to be technologically useful. Recently, however, an international collaboration of researchers from Spain, Scotland, and the U.S. has utilized ALS Beamline 11.3.1 (small-molecule crystallography) to characterize the design of such "molecular coolers".

Read more at https://als.lbl.gov/alsnews-vol-320/.

Advanced Light Source


April 2011 - Chemistry World

Molecular fridge can reach millikelvin

by Simon Hadlington

Scientists have laid the foundations for a high-performance 'molecular fridge' capable of reaching temperatures within a few thousandths of a degree of absolute zero with a high degree of efficiency. Such ultracoolers could have applications in areas such as ultra-low temperature physics, where alternative technologies such as those that rely on expensive and rare helium-3 could be unsuitable or too costly.

Read more at chemistryworld.com.

Euan Brechin Marco Evangelisti Keith Murray


March 2011 - Aragón Investiga y Heraldo de Aragón / Tercer Milenio

Física. De camino hacia el ordenador cuántico

por Marco Evangelisti

El magnetismo molecular se basa en el uso de moléculas para obtener nuevos materiales magnéticos con funciones no observables -ni siquiera imaginables- en imanes tradicionales. La fabricación "molécula a molécula" permite diseñar el material controlando sus propiedades. La línea más moderna de investigación, que desarrollamos en nuestro grupo de investigación "Chips moleculares (MolChip)", se centra en las moléculas-imán, que funcionan como imanes a nivel molecular y representan el último paso en el proceso de miniaturización de los materiales magnéticos. [...].

Enlace a la noticia.

© 2011 Aragón Investiga


December 2010 - Chemical Science

Molecular coolers get RSC - Chemical Science cover story

The cover story of the first issue of year 2011 of Chemical Science will feature our article titled Co–Gd phosphonate complexes as magnetic refrigerants, by Yan-Zhen Zheng, Marco Evangelisti and Richard E. P. Winpenny.

Link to http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C0SC00371A.

© 2011 ChemSci


October 2010 - Chemical Science Blog

Cobalt-gadolinium cages as magnetic refrigerants

by Joanne Thomson

A new family of cobalt-gadolinium cage compounds are highly efficient for low temperature cooling, say European scientists.

Link to the highlight.

Also highlighted by MRS News and Highlights in Chemical Technology.


August 2010 - The Journal of the American Chemical Society

Molecular coolers get JACS cover story

The cover story of the September 22nd issue of The Journal of the American Chemical Society will feature an article from members of our team in collaboration with colleagues at Edinburgh, Berkeley and Columbia. Our work targeted the synthesis of molecular nanomagnets for enhanced magnetic refrigeration and the experimental verification of the relevant role played by the anisotropy in setting the performance of these coolers.

The use of methylene-bridged calix[4]arenes in 3d/4f chemistry produces a family of clusters of formula [MnIII4LnIII4], where MnIII is a manganese ion and LnIII a lanthanide ion. The molecular structure describes a square of LnIII ions housed within a square of MnIII ions. The anisotropy induced by setting LnIII to be terbium or dysprosium ions results in (i) superparamagnetic behaviour of [MnIII4TbIII4] or [MnIII4DyIII4], respectively, with blocking temperatures in the temperature region below 1 K and (ii) poor performance of these clusters in terms of magnetic refrigeration. However, the replacement of the anisotropic terbium or dysprosium ions with the isotropic gadolinium ions results in a large number of molecular spin states that are populated even at the lowest investigated temperatures, while the ferromagnetic limit S = 22 is being approached only at the highest applied fields. This, combined with the high magnetic isotropy, makes [MnIII4GdIII4] an excellent magnetic refrigerant for low-temperature applications, providing for example a valid alternative to the use of 3He which is becoming rare and expensive.

Link to http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ja104848m.

Also highlighted by the European Institute of Molecular Magnetism, SINC, madri+d, La Catedral Innova, Plica Zaragózame, Ecoticias, CTNoticias, RDi Press, Technology for life, La Flecha, Keegy, Black Capital, EveryDay Science, Bitacoras, Energium, Notas de ciencia, Ruoleima, Aragón Investiga.

© 2010 JACS


May 2010 - Heraldo de Aragón / Tercer Milenio

Física > Nuevos materiales para construir el futuro: Refrigeradores magnéticos en miniatura

por Ana Sebastián

Entrevista a Marco Evangelisti sobre como la refrigeración magnética podría basar el desarrollo de detectores ultrasensibles.

Texto completo.


February 2010 - Heraldo de Aragón / Tercer Milenio

El helio3, un bien cada vez mas escaso para la ciencia

por Ana Sebastián

Agustín Camón and Marco Evangelisti interviewed on current situation in helium-3 shortage.

Texto completo.


December 2009 - Nature Chemistry

Single-molecule magnets: Gadolinium keeps its cool

by Anne Pichon

A cluster formed by calixarenes coordinated to a mixed metal manganese–gadolinium magnetic core has excited states that are populated at low temperature, and shows promise for magnetic refrigeration systems.

Single-molecule magnets (SMMs), which combine properties explained by classical and quantum physics, are attractive not just for fundamental studies, but also for various applications. They are used, for example, in magnetic refrigeration, which relies on materials that alter their temperature under a changing magnetic field — the so-called magnetocaloric effect. SMMs have been built by encapsulating metal clusters within large rigid shells, such as calixarenes.

The magnetism of the cluster was highly isotropic, and exhibited excited spin states that were populated even at low temperature. This resulted in a large magnetocaloric effect and these states only became depopulated under a high external magnetic field. This high ferromagnetic limit, together with the low-lying excited states and the high isotropy, makes this 3d/4f cluster a good candidate to be a low-temperature magnetic refrigerant.

© 2009 Wiley

Link to the journal site.


January 2009 - Le Scienze and Galileo

A. Ghirri et al., Small 4, 2240 (2008) was featured in Le Scienze (i.e. the Italian edition of Scientific American) and Galileo on January 2009.
Link to http://lescienze.espresso.repubblica.it/articolo/...
Link to http://www.galileonet.it/news/11000/due-scatti-per-i-nano-magneti.


May 2007 - Angewandte Chemie

M. Manoli et al., Angew. Chem. Int.-Ed. 46, 4456 (2007) was editorially rated as a “Very Important Paper” (VIP) which less than 5 percent of their manuscripts receive, and was highlighted on the page heading the Communications section.

inside highlight Angew. 2007


October 2005 - Angewandte Chemie

Qubit Link Could Pave The Way For World's Most Powerful Computers

M. Affronte et al., Angew. Chem. Int.-Ed. 44, 6496 (2005) was highlighted on the front cover, and was featured by the University of Manchester Press, ScienceDaily, PhysOrg.com, CCNews, nanotechwire.com, IndiaDaily, EurekAlert, NanoTsunami, Digg, Hero, QInf.org, I-uk, What's Next Network, Capital Ideas Online, The NanoTechnology Group Inc., SurfWax.

front cover Angew. 2005