Montanuniversität Leoben was founded in 1840 and has about 4000 students. The research and education profile is set along the value life cycle of products ranging from the extraction of raw materials, to processing, production processes, product design, product distribution, materials science, and recycling of end of life products to reintroduce them into the value life cycle. All study programs and the university philosophy is set along this life cycle. Within the Department of Materials Science, 13 full and associate professors, about 20 postdocs and about 50 PhD students are doing research to achieve a detailed understanding of the structure and the properties of materials and materials systems. The focus of the Chair of Functional Materials and Materials Systems, which is involved in the Nano4CSP project, represents a leading group in the field of surface engineering and thin film deposition, coating materials selection and design, thin film architectures and materials characterization with more than 30 years of experience and a unique portfolio of physical vapor deposition units complemented by characterization methods like various electron microscopy techniques, atom probe tomography, X-ray diffraction, nanoindentation and tribological tests.

Christian Mitterer is Professor for Functional Materials and Materials Systems and head of the Department of Materials Science at Montanuniversität Leoben (MUL), Austria. He received his Diploma and Ph.D. in Materials Science from Montanuniversität Leoben, Austria, in 1987 and 1994, respectively. His research focuses on establishing the scientific chain between synthesis of advanced multifunctional coatings and thin films, their structure, properties and performance, with particular interest on nitrides, borides, carbides, oxides, metals and alloys. He has pioneered self-adaptation mechanisms like age-hardening and self-lubrication of wear-resistant coatings.  Prof. Mitterer has published more than 320 papers in reviewed journals, edited nine proceedings and special issues, and holds 5 patents. He is an Editorial Board Member for the journals Surface and Coatings Technology, Nanomaterials and Coatings. In 2012, he was elected as a Fellow of the American Vacuum Society and in 2016 as a member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Nikolaos Kostoglou is a postdoctoral researcher at the Chair of Functional Materials and Materials Systems. He received his B.Sc. and Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Cyprus (UCY) in 2011 and 2012, respectively, and an M.Sc. in Energy Technologies and Sustainable Design from UCY in 2014. He received his Ph.D. in Materials Science with honours from MUL in 2017 under the supervision of Prof. Christian Mitterer and Prof. Claus Rebholz (UCY). His research mainly focuses on the development and characterization of nanoporous carbon-based materials and composites for hydrogen storage. Other research topics include selective gas separation, electrochemical energy storage and water purification. Nikolaos has published 17 papers in international high-impact peer-reviewed journals, including Nano Energy, Carbon, Materials and Design, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy and Microporous and Mesoporous Materials. He is a reviewer for various journals and currently serves as a Guest Editor for the special issue “Carbon-Based Materials for Hydrogen Production, Storage and Conversion”, to be published in 2020 by the Journal of Carbon Research (MDPI). He already served as a Guest Editor for the special issue “Nanoporous Materials, Surfaces and Coatings for Green Energy Conversion and Storage” published in Surface and Coatings Technology (Elsevier) and co-organized the 85th IUVSTA workshop on “Nanoporous Materials for Green Energy Conversion and Storage” in 2018.

Velislava L. Terziyska is a researcher at the Chair of Functional Materials and Materials Systems with more than 15 years of experience in the field of sputter deposition and characterization of coatings and thin films. She received her M.Sc. in Applied Geosciences from the University of Mining and Geology-”Saint Ivan Rilski” (Sofia, Bulgaria) in 2003. Her research interests include functional materials, physical vapor deposition, thin films and wear protective coatings. She has published 16 papers on the deposition and characterization of coatings and thin films in international peer-reviewed journals.