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Dr. Niko Van den Brande

I graduated as a master in chemistry at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) in 2009. For my master thesis I worked on carbon nanotube polymer composites both at the FYSC and General Chemistry (ALGC) research groups. Later in 2009 I started working as a PhD candidate under the supervision of prof. B. Van Mele, also in collaboration with the ALGC research group. For my PhD  I  investigated the active layer of bulk-heterojunction organic photovoltaics using a combination of advanced thermal analysis techniques such as chip calorimetry and rapid heat-cool differential scanning calorimetry (RHC), surface characterisation under the form of atomic force microscopy (AFM), and ab initio computational chemistry techniques such as density functional theory (DFT). I succesfully concluded my PhD in 2015. I obtained a BAEF fellowship for a one-year (2016-2017) stay in the Ediger group of the University of Wisconsin-Madison (USA), after which I resumed working as a postdoctoral researcher in FYSC on the characterisation of thin layers.