Department of Chemistry and Materials Science

Soft Materials Modelling

The Soft Materials Modelling Group of Maria Sammalkorpi employs computational and theoretical means to study macromolecular and surfactant systems in bulk solutions and at interfaces. We work on polymer and protein materials, as well as, colloidal systems. We love understanding soft materials at molecular level, work in tight collaboration with experimentalists and do our molecular modelling at atomistic to mesoscale. The applications include e.g. molecular coatings, drug delivery and bioproducts treatment.
Soft Materials Modelling group Aalto University
Maria Sammalkorpi

Research group leader, PI

Maria Sammalkorpi

Contact information:

Mail: Department of Chemistry and Materials Science & Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Aalto University, P.O. Box 16100, FI-00076 AALTO, Finland

Office: C217b, Kemistintie 1 (Chemistry building)

Email: maria.sammalkorpi((at))aalto.fi / Tel: +358-50-3717434

Maria is a scientist by training, a researcher by disposition, and nice in general. Her researcher profile including an incomplete list of publications and pdfs can be found here (research.aalto.fi).

Maria teaches Molecular Thermodynamics (CHEM-E4210) and Computational Chemistry I (CHEM-E4115). She also instructs a number of student projects and B.Sc. theses for the Aalto degree programs. She tends to be involved in a few other things as well. Anyway, what ever is your reason to seek her out, her work contact information is above.

The current active research projects in Soft Materials Modelling group involve modeling and characterization of amphiphile aggregation and adsorption in aqueous and oil-based solutions and macromolecular interactions and assembly especially in aqueous solutions (protein, carbohydrate and polyelectrolyte materials). We love understanding the molecular systems and their responses and work in tight collaboration with experimentalists in different fields. Our interests include:

Oil-water-oil interfaces and reverse micellar systems

Oil-water-oil interfaces form fascinating, well-controllable liquid-liquid interfaces while surfactant aggregation in apolar solvents is the basis of e.g. emulsion formation. We are interested in the oil-water-oil-surfactant systems and their structural control factors. For example, we have examined the response of lecithin in oil to the addition of water into the system. The system is an important bioproducts and organogelation system that has applications in pharmaceutics as a topical drug delivery matrix, in chemical synthesis as a confined reaction envinronment, and generally in usage of bio based oils including biofuels and alimentation.

Polymer and polyelectrolyte aggregation and adsorption behavior

We are also interested in macromolecular self-assembly, macromolecular structure, and aggregate dynamics both in bulk solutions and at interfaces.  We resort to atomistic, coarse-grained and mesoscale molecular simulations in studying macromolecular interactions and materials characteristics especially in the presence of solvent. Our particular interest is in ion, or excess salt containing systems (polyelectrolyte modelling) but we have worked also on block-co-polymer and amphiphilic polymer systems.

Synthetic protein materials and liquid-liquid phase separation in macromolecular solutions

Cellulose crystal interactions modelling

Nanocrystalline cellulose provides a renewable, highly versatile, biobased and biodegradable material for, e.g. functional coatings, composite materials, personal or health care applications, and even electronics. For all these uses, understanding and control of the interactions of crystalline cellulose with its surroundings are in key role. In our cellulose modelling research, we currently focus on examining the effects of cosolutes and oxidation defects on cellulose crystal interactions and the properties of cellulose crystal suspensions.

Soft Materials Modelling group

Sousa Javannikkhah

Department of Chemistry and Materials Science
Postdoctoral Researcher

Mohammad Khavani Sariani

Department of Chemistry and Materials Science
Postdoctoral Researcher
Maria Sammalkorpi

Maria Sammalkorpi

Department of Chemistry and Materials Science
Senior Scientist

Maisa Vuorte

Department of Chemistry and Materials Science
Doctoral Candidate

Latest publications

Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling
Publishing year: 2019 Soft Matter
School services, CHEM, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Bio-based Colloids and Materials, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling
Publishing year: 2019 Abstracts of papers of the American Chemical Society
Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Biomolecular materials, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling
Publishing year: 2019 European Polymer Journal
Wood Material Science, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling, Bioproduct Chemistry, Biohybrid materials
Publishing year: 2019 Langmuir
Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling
Publishing year: 2019 Macromolecules
Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems
Publishing year: 2019 ACS Omega
Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Physical Chemistry and Electrochemistry, Bioorganic Chemistry, Soft Materials Modelling, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems
Publishing year: 2019 Langmuir
Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Soft Materials Modelling
Publishing year: 2018 Macromolecules
Department of Chemistry and Materials Science, Soft Materials Modelling, Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Biomolecular materials, Bio-based Colloids and Materials, Department of Applied Physics
Publishing year: 2018 Langmuir
Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems, Biomolecular materials, Soft Materials Modelling, Department of Chemistry and Materials Science
Publishing year: 2018 Langmuir
More information on our research in the Research database.
Research database
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