The PhD thesis was supervised by Anna Roig, from the Nanoparticles & Nanocomposites (NN) Group at ICMAB-CSIC.
The PhD Committee that evaluated the Thesis was formed by Germán Salazar Alvarez, Uppsala University, Sweden (President), Leonardo Scarabelli, Institut de Ciència de Materials de Barcelona, Spain (Secretary) and Andreu Cabot Codina, Institut de Recerca en Energia de Catalunya, Spain (Vocal).
Miquel Torras' PhD thesis was part of the PhD Programme in Materials Science from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB).
From left to right: Andreu Cabot, Leonardo Scarabelli, Anna Roig, Germán Salazar and Miquel Torras | ICMAB
Why did you choose the ICMAB for your PhD?
For the group and for the project, in which I was already involved before the election due to the degree and master's theses.
How would you explain your research to a non-scientific audience?
I was engineering the manufacturing of applicable nanoparticle-based materials with alternative preparation strategies using microwave irradiation.
What are the main applications of your research? Could you give us an example?
My thesis has identified and consolidated microwave-assisted chemistry as an innovative synthetic approach for single and multicomponent nanoparticle fabrication with easily tuneable interesting properties and with high synthesis control. Also, with large-scale capabilities. Thus, the thesis encorages its use for efficient nanoparticle production. Moreover, most of the functional materials I prepared could be used as catalysts or photocatalyst, for instance, for the hydrogen generation from water spliting.
From the lessons learnt here, which one do you value the most?
The rigour with a constant effort for true and fruitful research.
What will you miss the most from ICMAB?
Its people and the family environment.
How do you think this experience will contribute to your training and to your future?
It has definitely set the basis for the serious and professional researcher I would like to be.
What are your plans once you finish your PhD?
Continue in the research world by doing initially post-doctoral research.
What do you wish you had known at the beginning of your PhD, that you can recommend to the ones who are starting?
The value of time and the importance of good organization.
Why did you become a scientist? Who have been your role models?
I do not have specific role models, only that science has been catching me since I was little.
Who is your favourite female scientist? And why?
Anna Roig, my supervisor. She is for me a reference on doing rigorous collaborative science in perfect equilibria with leadership.
Miquel Torras with supervisor Anna Roig | ICMAB