Alessia Mezzadrelli and Susana Plascencia unveiled their thesis proposals


The arrival of November has brought a double academic milestone for the NANO-GLASS project. Two of its early-stage researchers (ESRs), Alessia Mezzadrelli and Susana Plascencia, presented their respective thesis proposals. The presentations were held on November 3rd and November 6th. The presentations provided a public platform for the two young researchers to share their research and plans to achieve their individual research projects (IRP) goals.

Alessia Mezzadrelli’s presentation, entitled “Optical surface for display with application-specific functionalities” began with an overview of the work done so far about the study of anti-microbial surfaces to be used in touch-screen displays. She delved into the specific objectives of her thesis project, focused on the development of new solutions to be used in the display industry. “The thesis proposal is helpful as an initial check-point about the PhD program, to acquire awareness of what has been done and which other goals can be achieved.”, said Alessia Mezzadrelli once she finished her presentation.

Following her presentation, a panel of experts, including Prof. Dr. Robert Sewell, Head of Academic Affairs at ICFO; Prof. Dr. Majid Ebrahim-Zadeh, ICREA professor at ICFO; and Dr. Ilaria Mannelli, adjunct lecturer in Chemistry at UPC, posed questions to Mezzadrelli, focusing on the strategy to achieve her research goals.

On the other hand, Susana Plascencia’s presentation took place on November 6th. Similar to Alessia, she explained the approach of her IRP, entitled “Experimental investigation of quantum memories based on rare-earth-doped materials” emphasizing her project’s objectives and the approach to achieve them. Robert Sewell chaired the panel that evaluated Susana’s thesis proposal. Dr. Valerio Pruneri, ICREA Professor at ICFO, and Dr. Nicolas Sangouard, Professor at Quantum Information Theory group at CEA (France), were the other members of the panel. “Now that I’ve made my thesis proposal, I can move forward and focus on the experimental tasks I must complete towards achieving the targeted objectives”, said Susana, whose thesis is directed by Dr. Hugues de Riedmatten, ICREA Professor at ICFO.

These presentations are crucial milestones in their respective PhD journeys. ” With these new thesis proposals, Alessia and Susana take an important step toward their PhD degree and, at the same time, the project NANOGLASS shows significant results on glass materials and devices for information display and connectivity”, commented Valerio Pruneri.

All the four ESRs of the NANO-GLASS project have already made their thesis proposals and they can move forward on their research projects. Iliyan Karadzhov was the first ESR of the project to present formally his thesis proposal in March 2023.