Benjamin Lobel was awarded a Rideal Travel Bursary to attend the 36th European Colloid & Interface Society Conference in Crete, Greece. Here he tells us about his research and his highlights from the conference. Read his report below.
"I am a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Leeds working within Dr Olivier Cayre’s research group. My current research is concerned with the formulation of functional anisotropic Pickering emulsions to be used as templates for microencapsulation for enhanced active ingredient retention. These emulsions are stabilised by a combination of surfactants and polymeric nanoparticles that form an elastic film and trap these emulsion droplets in non-equilibrium conformations. I attended the 36th European Colloid & Interface Society Conference (ECIS) in Chiania, Crete (4th – 9th September) and I had the opportunity to exhibit my research as a poster presentation.
"The ECIS is an annual conference that brings together colloid and interface scientists from all over the world. The conference consisted of four parallel sessions each day and two large poster sessions. Both poster sessions consisted of over 180 abstracts and there were over 250 talks across the four days. These talks and posters covered a variety of topics including the synthesis of nanoparticles, bioinspired and composite systems, self-assembly, interfaces and advanced applications all of which were within the context of polymer, colloid and interface science.
"Of particular interest to me were the sessions on “Colloids at Interfaces, Membranes and Biointerfaces, Emulsions and Foams”. My current work is focused on emulsion formulation and having the opportunity to view presentations from PhD students working in similar fields as well as more senior researchers was invaluable. In addition to this, watching these talks allowed me the opportunity to discuss some of the work being presented in the breaks between these sessions and at the poster sessions. Being able to listen to several talks about the study of polyhedral emulsion formulation, both experimentally and computationally was fascinating and information from these talks will be utilized in my upcoming experiments.
"Due to COVID-19, ECIS 2022 was my first opportunity to present any of my work at a major international conference. Furthermore, being new to the region this presented an excellent opportunity to network with scientists and engineers with whom I had never had the opportunity to interact with and during my poster presentation I was able to benefit from their insight and expertise. These interactions have enabled me to pursue new avenues of research within my current project as well as alternative techniques and materials that I had not previously considered. In addition to this, the networking opportunities will be beneficial to my future career and may facilitate future collaborations that would have otherwise been extremely difficult. I would like to express my gratitude to the SCI-RSC Rideal Trust for awarding me this travel bursary which enabled me to travel to ECIS 2022."
University of Leeds