Institute of Chemistry - University of Graz, Austria

Description of the Institute of Chemistry

The Institute of Chemistry of the University Graz is well known for research activities on polymer structure and surface properties (especially cellulose). The institute is looking back onto a long lasting cooperation with different industries; several of these mutual activities are the basis for new products and materials. The Institute has about 75 permanent staff members and approximately 30 PhD students; 10 12 scientists are working on polysaccharides. The main expertise of the Colloid & Polymer Group is based on interface phenomena as well as surface modification and characterisation of synthetic, natural and biological materials. Further the modification and functionalisation of polymer surfaces, interactions of polymers with nano-particles, development of bio-compatible polymers, membrane separation processes, the molecular-, structure-, surface- characterisation and rheology of colloids and polymers.

Description of the polysaccharide research activities

Modification of polysaccharide / cellulose surface in order to obtain specific and new material properties. Introduction of surface groups with specific functionalities using chemical, enzymatic and physical methods. Creation of surface layers of well defined architecture in order to gain specific interaction properties. Development of new mechanical, physical, optical, drug storage and release and sensoric properties. This is obtained compounding and adsorbing nano-particles and functional polymers on polysaccharide surfaces. Development of cellulose membranes exhibiting specific interactions with components of the liquid phase (selective adsorption, separation) Enzymatic and chemical modification and characterization of polysaccharides according to their molecular properties (molecular weight distribution, hydrodynamic radii, branching).

Main equipment

Streaming potential (surface charge) analyser for fibres and foils (A. Paar) Oscillating streaming potential (surface charge) detector for fibres and foils (SISEC) Zetapotential, microelectrophoreses instruments (Brookhaven) Streaming potential titrator, Particle charge detector (ASG, Mütek) Surface tension, contact angle instruments (Data Physics, Krüss) On-line control instruments for adsorption isotherms (UV/VIS spectrophotometry) GPC with light scattering, viscosity and refractive index detector (TSK, Thermo separation, Viscotec, Wyatt) Atomic force microscope and ellipsometer Test instruments for polymer membranes and ion-exchange materials Rotational, oscillating and capillary rheometers (Physica). X-ray goniometer, wide and small angle (Siemens, SAXSess, A.Paar)


Volker Ribitsch


Phone: +43 316 380 54 18 Fax: +43 316 380 98 50

Address: Institute of Chemistry Colloid & Polymers Heinrichstraße 28 A-8010 Graz, Austria