Department of Applied Physics

Nanomaterials (NMG)

The NanoMaterials Group, headed by Prof. Esko I. Kauppinen, is among the top aerosol technology laboratories in the world and offers a unique environment for strong interdisciplinary research and a proven track record of productive cooperation.
Nanomaterials Group

The main research areas of the group are

  • the aerosol synthesis and mechanistic studies of formation of carbon nanotubes and inorganic nanoparticles
  • the applications of carbon nanotubes in transparent and flexible electronics
  • pharmaceutical nanoparticles and nanostructured microparticles as drug delivery systems
  • high resolution electron microscopy

Aalto Game Changer video of the NMG group (see also

Professor Esko I. Kauppinen, PhD (Physics)
Professor Esko I. Kauppinen

Group leader

Esko Kauppinen

Professor Esko I. Kauppinen, PhD (Physics) is the Vice-Dean responsible for research, innovations and industry relationships at the Aalto University School of Science and Tenured Professor of Physics at the Department of Applied Physics. He has published more than 450   scientific journal papers e.g. in Nature NanotechnologyNanoLetters, ACS Nano, Angewandte Chemie, Carbon, Energy and Environmental Sciences etc., having Hirsch-index over 69 and over 17 200citations.  He has given more than 130 keynote and invited conference talks and over 230 talks at world leading companies and universities. He is considered one of the world leading authors in the area of single walled carbon nanotube synthesis, characterisation and thin film applications as well as in the gas phase synthesis of particles for inhalation drug delivery. He is the founding member of the companies Canatu Oy (, MetalCirc Oy ( Teicos Pharma Oy ( Professor Kauppinen is the first Finnish recipient of a UNESCO Nanosciences Medal, which he received 2018.


The NanoMaterials group is active in several research fields:

  • Aerosol-based synthesis of nanomaterials: single-walled and multiwalled carbon nanotubes (CNTs), metal and metal oxide catalyst nanoparticles
  • Carbon nanotube based thin film electronics: transparent conducting electrodes (TCEs), thin film transistors (TFTs), sensors
  • Materials for electrochemical energy applications
  • Pharmaceutical nanomaterials: nanostructured microparticles and nanoparticles for  drug delivery and controlled release
  • Electron microscopy: atomic resolution imaging of nanomaterials, EDX, chirality measurements of CNTs
  • Aerosol measurements and techniques: Differential Mobility Analysis (DMAs), nanoaerosol deposition by thermophoretic and electrostatic precipitators
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)

Latest news

Picture: Nan Wei / Nanomaterials Group, Aalto University.
Press releases Published:

Sheets of carbon nanotubes come in a rainbow of colours

Study: Nanotube films come in 466 colours, could be used in electronics, solar panels
A cartoon of the structure of the catalyst
Press releases Published:

New material developed could help clean energy revolution

Researchers developed a promising graphene–carbon nanotube catalyst, giving them better control over hugely important chemical reactions for producing hydrogen fuel
Different nanotubes layered on top of eachother
Press releases Published:

Aalto carbon nanotubes used in new material revolution

Nanomaterials produced here have been used in groundbreaking new Science paper as part of international collaboration
Nanotube transistors on a chip being tested electically
Research & Art Published:

New way to know an old friend: New method reveals clean carbon nanotube transistors with superb properties

Scientists at Aalto and Nagoya University find new way to make ultra-clean nanotube transistors with superior semiconducting properties


The Nanomaterials group has a wide range of experimental facilities for the synthesis of carbon nanotubes and for their characterization as well as for developing pharmaceutical inhalation products.

Aerosol reactors for drug delivery systems

The Nanomaterials Group has developed the Aerosol Flow Reactor Method to formulate nano- and microparticles for pharmaceutical applications. The aerosol method enables formulating materials with different solubilities and thermal properties as novel platforms for controlled drug delivery, non-viral vectors for gene therapy and carrier-free drug powders for inhalation therapy.

Current focus areas

  • Next generation pulmonary delivery of therapeutic peptides
  • Efficient pulmonary delivery of poorly water-soluble drugs
  • Coating and encapsulation of combination drugs for pulmonary delivery

Aerosol flow reactor

Solutions where materials are dissolved are dispersed into droplets which are carried to the aerosol reactor with a gas. The particles are dried in a laminar flow followed by the coating process. Dry particles are collected by a cyclone or impactor. The general features of the aerosol reactor are listed below.

  • Jet atomizer: droplet size 300 nm, production 104-105 1/cm3
  • Ultrasonic nebulizer: droplet size 3-4 µm, production 105-106 1/cm3
  • Temperature 20-300 ºC, flow rate 1-20 l/min
  • Solvent options are many, however, no solvent mixtures are recommended

Carbon nanotube reactors

The Nanomaterials Group operates five carbon nanotube reactors based on the aerosol-based synthesis technique.

Diverse equipment

Latest publications

Multi-nucleation of single-walled carbon nanotubes in floating catalyst chemical vapor deposition

Saeed Ahmad, Qiang Zhang, Er Xiong Ding, Hua Jiang, Esko I. Kauppinen 2023 Chemical Physics Letters

Hydrogen evolution in alkaline medium on intratube and surface decorated PtRu catalyst

Farhan S. M. Ali, Ryan Lacdao Arevalo, Matthias Vandichel, Florian Speck, Eeva-Leena Rautama, Hua Jiang, Olli Sorsa, Kimmo Mustonen, Serhiy Cherevko, Tanja Kallio 2022 Applied Catalysis B: Environmental

Effect of atomic layer deposited zinc promoter on the activity of copper-on-zirconia catalysts in the hydrogenation of carbon dioxide to methanol

Aitor Arandia, Jihong Yim, Hassaan Warraich, Emilia Leppäkangas, René Bes, Aku Lempelto, Lars Gell, Hua Jiang, Kristoffer Meinander, Tiia Viinikainen, Simo Huotari, Karoliina Honkala, Riikka L. Puurunen 2022 Applied Catalysis B: Environmental

Molybdenum Disulfide/Double-Wall Carbon Nanotube Mixed-Dimensional Heterostructures

Xueyin Bai, Zhenyu Xu, Qiang Zhang, Shisheng Li, Yunyun Dai, Xiaoqi Cui, Hoon Hahn Yoon, Lide Yao, Hua Jiang, Mingde Du, Yi Zhang, Esko I. Kauppinen, Zhipei Sun 2022 Advanced Materials Interfaces

Intertube Excitonic Coupling in Nanotube Van der Waals Heterostructures

Maria G. Burdanova, Ming Liu, Michael Staniforth, Yongjia Zheng, Rong Xiang, Shohei Chiashi, Anton Anisimov, Esko I. Kauppinen, Shigeo Maruyama, James Lloyd-Hughes 2022 Advanced Functional Materials

Core-Selective Silver-Doping of Gold Nanoclusters by Surface-Bound Sulphates on Colloidal Templates: From Synthetic Mechanism to Relaxation Dynamics

Sourov Chandra, Alice Sciortino, Shruti Shandilya, Lincan Fang, Xi Chen, Hua Jiang, Leena Sisko Johansson, Marco Cannas, Janne Ruokolainen, Robin H.A. Ras, Fabrizio Messina, Bo Peng, Olli Ikkala 2022 ADVANCED OPTICAL MATERIALS

Towards the synthesis of semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes by floating-catalyst chemical vapor deposition

Er Xiong Ding, Peng Liu, Abu Taher Khan, Qiang Zhang, Nan Wei, Hua Jiang, Esko I. Kauppinen 2022 Carbon

Two orders of magnitude enhancement in oxygen evolution reactivity of La0.7Sr0.3Fe1−xNixO3−δ by improving the electrical conductivity

Lijun Fan, Eeva Leena Rautama, Johan Lindén, Jani Sainio, Hua Jiang, Olli Sorsa, Nana Han, Cristina Flox, Yicheng Zhao, Yongdan Li, Tanja Kallio 2022 Nano Energy

Utilization of Multifunctional Environment-Friendly Organic Dopants Inspired from Nature for Carbon Nanotube-Based Planar Heterojunction Silicon Solar Cells

Jiye Han, Jeong Seok Nam, Seungju Seo, Aram Lee, Changhyun Lee, Sangeun Park, Yoonmook Kang, Hae Seok Lee, Donghwan Kim, Qiang Zhang, Hyokyung Sung, Esko Kauppinen, Hyuck Jeong, Jin Woo Oh, Shigeo Maruyama, Im Doo Jung, Il Jeon 2022 Advanced Energy and Sustainability Research

Reduced TiO2 nanotube array as an excellent cathode for hydrogen evolution reaction in alkaline solution

Xuelan Hou, Kerttu Aitola, Hua Jiang, Peter D. Lund, Yongdan Li 2022 Catalysis Today
More information on our research in the Research database.
Research database

Research group members

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