Miisa Tavaststjerna

Technische Universiteit Delft

TU Delft, The Netherlands

Project title:
Effect of polymer coating chemical topology on ice formation and adhesion on smooth coatings

Santiago J. García

Starting date: 01/06/2021

Research updates:

April, 2023: In the Interfreezing school, in Corsica, France, Miisa presented her results in the poster format
April, 2023: Her poster on “The role of molecular water layer (MWL) on surface freezing mechanisms” presented in the Dutch Polymer Days event was awarded with the creativity prize.

September, 2022: Miisa was part of the Management Team for Aerospace Structures and Materials in TU Delft on September 2022.

June, 2022: Miisa participated in the 17th Coatings Science International Conference and won the Innovation prize with a poster that you can check here:

Feb, 2022. Miisa is using an infrared camera to analyse freezing events in different surfaces, take a look at the video here

About her:

“In 2015, I started studying chemistry and mathematics in the University of Helsinki. During BSc and MSc studies I worked in the University’s Laboratory of Polymers and Colloids on two different projects focusing on the LCST behavior of a water soluble thermoresponsive poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) and the functions of nanoparticles based on self-assembling amphiphilic poly(2-isopropyl-2-oxazoline)-block-poly(lactide) (PiPOx-b-PLA) diblock copolymers. In 2021, I joined the Novel aerospace Materials (NovAM) group in Delft University of Technology (TUDelft) as a PhD student under the supervision of Dr. Santiago J. Garcia. My PhD project focuses on the effect of chemical topology on ice formation and adhesion on smooth coatings. Since material synthesis and surface chemistry modifications are the backbone of this research, experience in polymer science is essential to its success”

Goals in the project

The anti-icing strategy based on suppressing inter droplet ice bridging with hydrophilic/hydrophobic patterned surfaces has already inspired several ground-breaking studies with positive initial results. However, due to the lack of sufficient characterization methods, the molecular liquid layer of water (MLL) which plays a key role in the rapid ice propagation on surfaces has been widely overlooked in these studies.

The objectives of this project are to study systematically the effect of coating chemical topology on the presence of MLL, and the role of such MLL on ice nucleation, propagation and adhesion on coatings. A promising new characterization method based on laser-speckle (LS) and infrared (IR) imaging will be further developed to monitor and quantify both MLL and icing on the surfaces. The new information gained on MLL and icing will then be used to make rational designs for durable anti-icing coatings based on hydrophilic/hydrophobic patterns. The most successful samples will be tested in static and dynamic icing conditions to evaluate their performance in preventing the formation of glaze ice on surfaces.