Dr. Matthias Thommes
(Director, Applied Science, Quantachrome Instruments)
Dr. Thommes received his Doctorate in Physical Chemistry in 1993 at the Technical University Berlin (1992/93). From 1992- 1995 Dr. Thommes was a Research Associate at the Iwan-N.-Stranski Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Technical University Berlin and Project Scientist for a microgravity experiment on critical adsorption which was carried out on the EURECA mission of the European Space Agency (ESA). From 1996 to 1997, he was an ESA fellow and Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Institute for Physical Science and Technology at the University of Maryland at College Park, USA.
In 1998 Dr. Thommes joined Quantachrome, first as the Head of Application Department at Quantachrome GmbH in Germany, and then in 2001 as Director of Applied Science at the Quantachrome Headquarters in Boynton Beach, Florida, USA.
Dr. Thommes has authored/co-authored more than 90 peer-reviewed papers, reviews and book chapters, as well as a monograph on the Characterization of Porous Solids and Powders. He has given more than 150 presentations, incl. invited plenary and keynote lectures at prestigious international scientific conferences and universities all over the world.
Dr. Thommes is a Visiting Professor at University of Edinburgh, U.K, and is active as a member of a number of leading and authoritative bodies in his field: Board of Directors of the International Adsorption Society (IAS), Council Member of the International Mesostructured Materials Association (IMMA, 2006-2010), Member of the Advisory Board of the journal Particle & Particle Systems Characterization, and Editorial Board Member of the Journal Advanced Porous Materials.
Dr. Thommes is the Chairman of the new IUPAC (International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry) Task Group – “Physisorption of Gases, with Special Reference to the Evaluation of Surface Area and Pore Size Distributions”. He is also Convener of the International Standard Organization (ISO) Working Group on Surface Area and Porosity, and Chairman of ASTM C28-03(Physical Properties of Ceramics).
Physical Adsorption Characterization of Nanoporous Materials :
Progress and Challenges
Dr. Matthias Thommes
Quantachrome Corporation, 1900 Corporate Dr., Boynton Beach, FL 33426, USA
A comprehensive textural characterization of nanoporous materials has become more important than ever for the optimization of novel systems used in many important existing and potentially new applications. The most popular method to obtain surface area, pore size, pore size distribution and porosity information from powders and porous solids is gas adsorption. However, despite the recent progress achieved in the understanding of the adsorption mechanism of fluids in highly ordered mesoporous materials with simple pore geometries (e.g., M41S materials), there are still challenges concerning the surface and textural characterization of more complex porous systems. Within this context we will review recent advances and important questions associated with the physical adsorption characterization of advanced nanoporous materials such as hierarchically structured zeolites, metal organic frameworks, mesoporous molecular sieves and others. In addition we will discuss the potential of physical adsorption (by combining argon adsorption at 87 K with water adsorption at 298 K) for assessing important aspects of the surface chemistry (e.g. hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity) of nanoporous solids (e.g. micro-mesoporous zeolites).