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Open characterisation and modelling environment to drive innovation in advanced nano-architectured and bio-inspired hard/soft interfaces

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - Oyster (Open characterisation and modelling environment to drive innovation in advanced nano-architectured and bio-inspired hard/soft interfaces)

Reporting period: 2019-06-01 to 2020-11-30

Based on the manufacturing/characterisation/modelling triangle, the OYSTER project will enable the optimisation of models, products and processes related to nano-engineered surfaces with tailored surface-free-energy, improved adhesion. In this context, OYSTER offers standardised protocols for multi-technique, multi-scale characterisations of adhesion and interfacial phenomena using advanced nano-scale contact mechanics characterisation methods, such as nanoindentation and atomic force microscopy (AFM). It will establish new international standard protocols and reference materials for standardisation of the micro/nano-scale analysis of adhesion and interfacial phenomena in particular through collaboration and activities together with the European Materials Characterisation Council (EMCC), European Materials Modelling Council (EMMC) and European Pilot Production Network (EPPN).

The following specific objectives and key performance indicators (KPIs) ensure that its excellent scientific and technical ambitions translate pragmatically into high growth potentials, especially for the industrial partners (and in particular SMEs):

•Next generation nanoindentation and AFM for adhesion measurement;
•Validation of a suite of materials modelling tools to harmonise understanding of adhesion across multiple length scales;
•Development and wide dissemination of an Open Innovation Environment (OIE) web platform for the establishment of a wider manufacturing/modelling/ characterisation network linked with stakeholder platforms such as EMMC, EMCC, and EPPN;
•Development of novel open and adaptable metadata structures for design, characterisation and modelling;
•Development of surface enhanced materials for Optronics (THALES), contact lenses (Nanoforce) and superhydrophobic coatings (FUNCOATS) ;

Technical success indicators (KPIs), related to the objectives presented above.

•TRL6 Innovative hardware/software solutions for quantitative adhesion measurements by contact mechanics;
•Discrete and continuum adhesion models validated on reference materials to guarantee industry acceptance and interoperability;
•Data framework based web platform (OIE) facilitating access of characterisation and modelling ;
•EMMO for nanoindentation;
•TRL6 demonstration for developed materials and coatings.
Overall, the activities in the project are well aligned with the Description of Action (DoA), according to the following synthesis:

WP2:
• The final protocols for AFM (D2.1) and Nanoindentation (D2.2) surface energy measurements has been delivered and validated.
• The protocol for the calculation of total uncertainty and uncertainty budget for the Snap-in method has been finalised (D2.2).
• The protocol for XPS/SIMS/AES measurements has been delivered and validated (D2.3);
• The two AFM manufacturers (SIL and Nanosurf) have developed and delivered their experimental protocols (D5.3 and D5.4);

WP3:
• The three main reports (D3.1 D3.2 D3.2) have been delivered, describing the atomistic simulations of solid/liquid and solid/solid interfaces.

WP4:
• The EMMO for nano-scale mechanical characterisation has been submitted (D4.3).
• The first consolidated version of the OIE platform was presented during the M36 meeting (as well as in D4.9).
• The CHADA concept has been published and the sharing action among many NMBP Eu project (through EMCC) has started effectively.
• Several CHADA examples have been prepared and published (together with the accompanying experimental protocols, D4.7):
• The OYSTER CEN CWA on “Materials characterisation - Terminology, classification and metadata” as started, and the kick-off meeting was well attended.

WP5:
• Thales already completed a series iterations that led to the production of demonstrators with outstanding superhydrophobic behaviour;
• Funcoats delivered all samples according to schedule for M24 (D5.12 and D5.14);
• Nanoforce has delivered first new materials for microchamber arrays, which would be most appropriate for coating of contact and intraocular lenses;
• IWM has delivered several optimised versions of the hydrophobic 3D printed materials, with a new idea for engineered meta-surface with adaptable wettability;

WP6:
• EIGTH papers on high-impact journals were published;
• The project has joined the CEN/WS NATEDA data exchange case study;
• Oyster has participated to the main EU-NMBP, EMCC and EMMC 2018-2020 events, as well as international conferences.
• The OYSTER project has been highlighted on the evening edition of main public Italian news (TG1 – RaI1, June 2019).
• An interview was given to the main official Italian Radio “RadioRai” (GRParlamento, July 2019) on the main morning edition in international broadcasting.
• The project has received a NOMINATION at the 2020 CEN-CENELEN innovation awards 2020
• The project has been selected as an EU success story and the article was published
• The Oyster ZENODO platform was published, https://zenodo.org/communities/oyster
In the first 36 months of the project, THREE main innovations have been already demonstrated by tangible and quantifiable results:
a. OIE platform and its working principles, designed for as the basis for a future EMCC public platform for innovations, https://www.innoradar.eu/innovation/33862
b. Creation of novel metadata structure (CHADA) for collection data and information related to characterisation methodologies, https://www.innoradar.eu/innovation/33856
c. Functionalized nanopatterned surfaces for super-hydrophobic materials, https://www.innoradar.eu/innovation/3385

Here is a synthetic list of the main progresses beyond the state of the art:

1. Developed experimental protocol and already obtained quantitative results for Nanoindentation and AFM surface-free-energy measurements on all nanopatterned and reference samples;
2. Thales and FUNCOATS already went through several iterations that led to the production of demonstrators that already show outstanding superhydrophobic behaviour;
3. The atomistic modelling activities are completed and validated;
4. The main concepts of CHADA has been published and the sharing action among many NMBP Eu project (though EMCC) has started effectively: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mtcomm.2019.100541
5. EIGTH Open-Access papers with OYSTER acknowledgement were already published on international peer reviewed journals, as reported in the participant portal;
6. Oyster has participated, acting as invited speaker and/or event organiser to all the main EU-NMBP, EMCC and EMMC recent events:
7. The OYSTER project has been highlighted on the evening edition of main public Italian news (TG1 – RaI1): http://www.rai.it/dl/RaiTV/programmi/media/ContentItem-d1f3c1ac-2d6b-463e-a31f-134d66929563-tg1.html
8. The project has received a NOMINATION at the 2020 CEN-CENELEN innovation awards 2020
9. The project has been selected as an EU success story and the article was published

The structure of the OIE environment was specifically designed to be directly and deeply interconnected with a number of European active actions and clusters (EMCC, EMMC, EPPN, CFPS, NSC). This, together with a clear business plan, dedicated business models, Life Cycle Cost Analysis of developed techniques and specifically allocated resources, will guarantee all maintenance aspects of the OIE well beyond the lifetime of the project.
fig-1-the-conceptual-framework-of-oyster-1.jpg