Department of
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Davide De Focatiis

Associate Professor, Faculty of Engineering

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Biography

Dr Davide De Focatiis completed his MEng degree in Engineering Science at the University of Cambridge in 1999. During his Masters research, working with Dr Simon Guest, he discovered a family of biomimetic folding mechanisms based on the folding structure of beech and hornbeam leaves, with applications as deployable structures. From 1999-2003 he studied for a DPhil (Ph.D.) at the Department of Engineering Science, University of Oxford, with Dr Zhong You. This work was concerned with the mechanics of a needle-free powder injection device developed by Oxford spin-off PowderJect Pharmaceuticals. After completing his DPhil, he was employed as a Research Assistant in the Solid Mechanics and Materials Engineering group at the Engineering Department, University of Oxford, working under the direction of Prof. C.Paul Buckley, from 2005-2008. This work was part of a large EPSRC funded collaboration following the path of well-characterised polymers from synthesis, through processing into the solid state. Major developments include the formulation of molecularly-aware and process-aware craze initiation criteria, and the development of large-deformation constitutive models for processed amorphous polymer products.

In February 2009 he was appointed to a Lectureship in the Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering at the University of Nottingham. In September 2013 he transferred to the Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering to better align teaching and research. Besides research on polymers, he teaches an interdisciplinary module on Polymer Engineering (4rd year), a modue on Advanced Rheology and Materials (4th year), and contributes to Mechanics of Solids teaching. He is the department's representative for Mathematics Support.

Dr Davide De Focatiis is a part of the Composites Research Group.

Expertise Summary

Dr Davide De Focatiis is Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering, and within the Faculty of Engineering. His research is focused on the characterisation and prediction of solid-state properties of processed polymers and polymer composites, and on the development of new test methods. Currently the focus areas are structure-property relationships and constitutive modelling of polymer glasses, electrical and mechanical properties of carbon nanotube nanocomposites, development of novel degradable nanocomposites for implant applications, the Mullins effect in filled elastomers, measurement and prediction of adhesive tack in composite prepregs (with Boeing), manufacturing of polymer membranes for fuel cells (with the Paul Scherrer Institut, Switzerland), and modelling of deformation of soft tissues (with ETH Zurich, Switzerland).

Teaching Summary

Dr De Focatiis is module convenor for the level 1 module Mechanics of Solids 1, and for the level 4 module Polymer Engineering. In the past he has been convenor for the level 4 module Advanced… read more

Research Summary

Dr Davide De Focatiis's main research interests lie in the field of solid state properties of polymers. Current projects are investigating the mechanical response of processed polymers and… read more

Selected Publications

Dr De Focatiis is module convenor for the level 1 module Mechanics of Solids 1, and for the level 4 module Polymer Engineering. In the past he has been convenor for the level 4 module Advanced Rheology and Materials and for the level 3 module Chemical Product Design. He is also the departmental coordinator for postgraduate demonstrators and the departmental mathematics support coordinator.

Current Research

Dr Davide De Focatiis's main research interests lie in the field of solid state properties of polymers. Current projects are investigating the mechanical response of processed polymers and elastomers, and the effects of the introduction of fillers such as carbon black and carbon nanotubes. The electrical properties of such composites under strain are also being examined with application as large strain sensors. Other areas of interest include constitutive modelling of properties of processed polymers, properties of nanocomposites, flow-induced crystallisation in polymers, and biodegradable and bioresorbable polymers and composites. Dr De Focatiis is a member of the Faculty of Engineering, and of the Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering. He has collaborations within Nottingham with the Department of Chemical Engineering, the School of Chemistry and the School of Mathematics, and beyond with the Electrochemistry Laboratory of the Paul Scherrer Institute, Switzerland, and with the research group of Prof. E. Mazza at ETH Zurich.

For more up-to-date information about research interests, visit http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/~enzddf

Department of Mechanical, Manufacturing and Materials Engineering

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD


telephone: +44 (0) 115 95 14081