A special CoACH for the next generation of researchers

Title of the research project

CoACH: Advanced glasses, Composites And Ceramics for High growth industries

Scientific area  

Materials Science and Technology


CoACH has provided an innovative, multidisciplinary and inter-sectorial doctoral training for young researchers in glass, ceramic and composite science and technology for the strategic thematic areas of health, energy, ICT and environment.

Description of the research project  

CoACH (Advanced glasses, Composites and Ceramics for High Growth industries) is a European Training Network which has been supported by the EC through the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action. CoACH has provided an innovative, multidisciplinary and inter-sectorial doctoral training for young researchers in glass, ceramic and composite science and technology for the strategic thematic areas of health, energy, ICT and environment.

The 15 early stage researchers selected for CoACH (40% of them are women!) have developed new antibacterial materials, innovative materials for energy production and harvesting, sensors for harsh environments and building materials from industrial wastes.

Besides, the 15 CoACH fellows had the possibility to exploit an international, interdisciplinary and inter-sectorial research training, strengthened through specific training implementation tools. The industrial supervision and the secondments in the private sector have guaranteed inter-sectorial knowledge sharing and the acquisition of transferable skills with emphasis on entrepreneurship and innovation.

Research project results

The results produced by the project have an excellent potential for new research and also for exploitation in many applied fields. The project has produced about 50 papers on international scientific journals (and many others waiting for review) and 2 international patent applications. Moreover, a special issue dedicated to the project will be published soon on “Materials”.

The 15 individual research projects concern:

  • novel, antibacterial and nanostructured coatings for medical devices and implants for dental, orthopaedic and tissue engineering processes. They can help reduce bacterial infections and cut the use of antibiotics in patients.
  • innovative glass fibre sensors that can monitor the degradation of polymer composites in harsh environments (i.e. petrochemical, aeronautic, naval branch)
  • innovative thermoelectric materials using non-toxic elements and new manufacturing techniques for more efficient thermoelectric devices
  • new glass-ceramic and ceramic materials that will be able to increase the reliability of solid oxide electrolysis cells
  • materials for eco-sustainable buildings produced by industrial waste

Impact on researcher’s career and on society 

CoACH ESRs have participated in a joint research training programme built on very strong academia/industry cooperation. During the project researchers have acquired a unique set of high level skills (i.e. organisation and communication skills, entrepreneurship, take up and exploitation of results …) thus increasing their entrepreneurial and creative attitudes and their professional career opportunities towards large sectors of high growth industries (health care, ICT, energy and environment sectors) and academia. 

Finally, the outcomes of the CoACH activities-  innovative, cost-competitive and environmentally acceptable materials and processing technologies – have strong potential for excellent research and technological development, and each researcher has learned how to convert her/his results into social and economic benefits.

Working group @Polito  

The CoACH working grop @Polito is part of the GLANCE team (Glasses, ceramics and  composites) of the Department of Applied Science and Technology:

Milena Salvo, associate professor, coordinator of the CoACH project

Monica Ferraris, full professor

Daniel Milanese, associate professor

Marco Sangermano, associate professor

Enrica Vernè, associate professor

Federico Smeacetto, associate professor 

Valentina Casalegno, assistant professor

Cristina Balagna, post-doc fellow

Massimo Olivero, technician (D.ET)


CoACH Early Stage Researcher (ESR) al Politecnico di Torino:

Pablo Lopez Iscoa

Cristian Marro Bellot

Hassan Javed


List of beneficiary organizations 

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany, prof. A. R. Boccaccini. ESR: Francesca Ciraldo e Nicoletta Toniolo.

Université de Rennes 1, France, prof. B. Bureau e prof. C. Boussard. ESR:  Bhuvanesh Srinivasan.

Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy, prof. E. Bernardo. ESR:  Acacio Rincon Romero.

Institute of Physics of Materials, Czech Republic, prof. I. Dlouhy. ESR: Alessia Masini e Gianmarco Taveri. 

Element Materials Technology, United Kingdom, dott. Stefanos Giannis. ESR: Silviu Ivan e Matteo Cavasin. 

Colorobbia Consulting s.r.l., Italy, dott.  G. Baldi. ESR: Rocío Tejido Rastrilla. 

Nanoforce Technology Ltd., United Kingdom, prof. M. J. Reece. ESR: Francesco Gucci e Min Yu. 

European Thermodynamics Ltd., United Kingdom, dott. K. Simpson. ESR: Katarzyna Placha. 


List of partner organizations

nLIGHT Corporation, Finland, dott.ssa L. Petit.

SASIL S.p.A., Italy, dott. P. Ercole. 

DIAFIR, France,  dott. F. Charpentier.

IDP s.a.s, Belgium, dott. L. Costantino. 

Bactiguard AB, Sweden, dott. M. Ohrlander. 

Sunfire GmbH, Germany, dott. C. Walter.

 CoACH project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 642557

  • Budget: 3.882.900 euro
  • Start date: 1/01/2015
  • End date: 31/12/2018