Prof.dr.ir. Ilja Voets is a professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry & the Institute for Complex Molecular Systems (ICMS) at Eindhoven University of Technology.
She leads a team of chemists, physicists, biologists, and engineers, studying self-assembly processes in (biological) soft matter. She seeks to understand the simple design rules that orchestrate how complex functionalities emerge from hierarchical self-organisation processes aiming ultimately to manufacture and apply innovative lifelike materials in a more environmentally benign, faster, more (energy)efficient, and cheaper fashion. She is interested in colloidal self-organization, polymer assembly and folding, and protein biophysics. She studies how to control intra- and intermolecular copolymer assembly to reveal key structure-property relations, package fragile biomolecules, develop artificial enzymes, enhance colloidal stability and tailor smart materials.
Voets has a particular fascination for ice-binding proteins that help fish, insects, and plants to survive in extreme environments at sub-zero temperatures. Another key research challenge is that of orchestrating colloidal self-assembly with remote cues such as light and temperature.
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