Group Coordinator: José Nuno Canongia Lopes



All integrated/associated members of the MET group participate in different tasks/projects with the common goal of exploring the relations between the interactions and structure of matter at a molecular level, the corresponding (emergent) thermodynamic characteristics of the systems at a mesoscopic or macroscopic level, and their possible technological applications.

Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM-D)The different ongoing tasks can be discussed in terms of three plus one research fronts: i) fluids and supercritical fluids, ii) surface studies and iii) ionic liquids, plus their technological applications.

i) Equilibrium and transport properties of fluids, namely calibrants and reference fluids, are in constant demand for the chemical process and fuel extraction industries. In this context the MET group performs high-accuracy experiments using vibrating-wire cells developed in-house. Other measurements include water-polyalcohol systems at high temperature, protein aqueous solutions at low temperature, and the diffusion of anesthetic and respiratory gases. Other tasks in this research front include supercritical fluids, namely the biorefinery of oils and the extraction of bioactive compounds from microalgae and vegetable matrices, reactions in supercritical CO2 (e.g. pharmaceutical drugs co-crystallization), and the micronization of drugs and catalysts.

ii) Surface studies on the self-organization and nanostructures of films and monolayers are explored at the MET group mainly in lipid, lipid/polymer or lipid/surfactant systems and their interactions with drugs, or in hydrogenated/fluorinated systems and their biomedical applications as blood substitutes and respiratory emulsions. Controlled drug release from hydrogels for ophthalmic lenses is attempted through surface modifications; whereas interactions with solid substrates are studied in tasks related to the friction and wear of bio-implants and Si surfaces. Finally, the characterization of new hydraulic binders is also studied and is extremely relevant in the context of the cement industry and its impact in terms of CO2 emissions.

iii) Ionic liquids (ILs) are a relatively new class of compounds that are studied at MET by a series of different tasks using distinct methodologies. Most MET group members are currently participating actively in this research front. Molecular modeling and simulation tasks include the development of new force fields for ILs and the analysis of their structure and interactions at an atomistic level. Such analyses are often complemented by other techniques, most notably Xe NMR spectroscopy. Other tasks are linked to research fronts i) and ii): phase equilibria and transport properties of ILs and their mixtures are an extension to ionic systems of the high-precision measurements usually performed at the MET group; contact angles, surface tension, adsorption, film formation and tribological measurements in ILs with surfactant or lubricant properties or ILs with special affinity for abuse drugs and natural aromas supplement the surface studies performed at the MET group.

 Photos from out labs

Foto grupoFoto grupo Canogia


Integrated Members

José Nuno Aguiar Canongia Lopes

Antonio Manuel Figueiredo Palavra

Benilde Jesus Vieira Saramago

Edmundo José Simões Gomes de Azevedo

Eduardo Jorge Morilla Filipe

João Manuel Nunes Alvarinhas Fareleira

Rogerio Anacleto Cordeiro Colaço

Carla Maria Bispo Padrel de Oliveira

Fernando José Pires Caetano

José Augusto Paixão Coelho

Miguel Ângelo Joaquim Rodrigues

Zoran P. Visak

Carlos Eduardo Sabino Bernardes

Karina Shimizu

Pedro Jorge Rodrigues Morgado


PhD students

Anabela de Jesus Lobo da Costa

Mónica Filipa da Silva Rosa

Rodrigo Manuel Lino dos Santos

Patrizia Paradiso

Bruno Miguel Fernandes Nunes

José Augusto Faria Sineiro Restolho

João Carlos Fazendeiro Diogo


Collaborators & Other researchers

Amélia Maria Pina Soares Goncalves Silva

Anabela Catarino Fernandes

José Luis Gonçalves Correia da Mata



Canongia Lopes, J.N.; Pádua, A.A.H.; Shimizu, K.; Molecular Force Field for Ionic Liquids IV: Trialkylimidazolium and Alkoxycarbonyl-Imidazolium Cations; Alkylsulfonate and Alkylsulfate Anions. J. Phys. Chem. B, 112, 5039-5046, 2008. DOI: 10.1021/jp800281e; IF=3.607; CIT=93.

Tariq, M.; Freire, M.G.; Saramago, B.; Coutinho, J.A.P.; Canongia Lopes, J.N.; Rebelo, L.P.N.; Surface tension of ionic liquids and ionic liquid solutions, Chem. Soc. Rev., 41, 829-868, 2012. DOI: 10.1039/c1cs15146k; IF=24.892; CIT=58.

Freire, M. G.; Neves, C. M. S. S.; Marrucho, I. M.; Canongia Lopes, J. N.; Rebelo, L. P. N.; Coutinho, J. A. P.; High-performance extraction of alkaloids using aqueous two-phase systems with ionic liquids, Green Chem. 12; 1715-1718, 2010. DOI: 10.1039/c0gc00179a; IF=6.828; CIT=68

Palavra, A.M.F.; Coelho, J.P.; Barroso, J.G.; Rauter, A. P.; Fareleira J.M.N.A.; Mainar, A.; Urieta, J.S.; Nobre, B.P.; Gouveia, L.; Mendes, R.L.; Cabral, J.M.S.; Novais, J.M.; Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Extraction of Bioactive Compounds from Microalgae and Volatile Oils from Aromatic Plants; J. Supercrit. Fluids 60, 21-27, 2011. DOI: 10.1016/j.supflu.2011.04.017; IF=2,86 ; CIT=11

Grosso, C.; Ferraro, V.; Figueiredo, A. C.; Barroso, J. G.; Coelho, J. A.; Palavra, A. M.; Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Extraction of Volatile Oil from Italian Coriander Seeds; Food Chemistry 111, 197-203, 2008. DOI: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2008.03.031; IF=3,334 ; CIT=56

Koehler, R.; Restolho, J.; Krastev, R.; Shimizu, K.; Canongia Lopes, J.N.; Saramago, B.; Liquid- or Solid-Like Behavior of [omim][BF4] at a Solid Interface?. J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 2, 1551-1555, 2011. DOI: 10.1021/jz2005682; IF=6,586 ; CIT=3

Rodrigues, M.A.; Figueiredo, L.; Padrela, L.; Cadete, A.; Tiago, J.; Matos, H.A.; Gomes de Azevedo, E.; Florindo, H.F.; Gonçalves, L.M.; Almeida, A.J.; Development of a novel mucosal vaccine against strangles by supercritical enhanced suspensions. Eur. J. Pharm. Biopharm. 82, 392-400, 2012. DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpb.2012.07.005; IF=3.826 ; CIT=3

Saramago, B.; Thin liquid wetting films. Curr. Opi. Colloid Interface Sci. 15, 330–340, 2010. DOI: 10.1016/j.cocis.2010.05.005; IF=6.629 ; CIT=6

Caetano, F.J.P.; Fareleira, J.M.N.A.; Fröba, A.P., Harris, K.R.; Leipertz, A.; Oliveira, C.M.B.P.; Trusler, J. P.M.; Wakeham, W.A.; An Industrial Reference Fluid for Moderately High Viscosity, J. Chem. Eng. Data 53, 2003-2011, 2008. DOI: 10.1021/je800059n; IF=2.004 ; CIT=21

Bardin, L.; Fauré, M.C.; Limagne, D.; Chevallard, C.; Konovalov, O.; Filipe, E.F.M.; Waton, G.; Krafft, M.P.; Goldmann, M.; Fontaine, P.; Long Range Nanometer Scale Organization of Semi-Fluorinated Alkane Monolayers at the Air/Water Interface, Langmuir 2, 13497-13505, 2011. DOI: 10.1021/la201802x; IF=4,187 ; CIT=6

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