Federica Menegazzo
Industrial Chemistry

What do you teach at Ca’ Foscari? What are your main research interests?
My scientific activity has developed in Industrial Chemistry and Materials Science. Specifically, my research focuses on heterogeneous catalysis, nanostructured materials and the development of processes for a new Sustainable Chemistry. I believe that catalysis is one of the key technologies for the sustainable development of the world, and with a view to all-round sustainability, I have contributed to the development of catalysts and processes to exploit waste biomass, turning it from waste into a resource, or for the production of hydrogen, which is considered the energy source of the future, from renewable sources. Recently, I have also been studying formulations for cosmetics, bio-construction and cultural heritage applications.

What are you most passionate about in your research?
There are many reasons why I chose to devote myself to scientific research, and especially to chemistry. In its complexity and richness, Chemistry is not 'only' Science, but also Life, Environment, Industry. Industrial Chemistry, especially, can be interpreted as 'Chemistry at the service of human needs' and I like to think that the research we do today enables us to design our future and contributes to improving the quality of life.

What does researching mean to you?
Over the years, I have had the chance to actively work with many research groups, both Italian and foreign. This has given me the chance to share my experiences and to benefit from complementary skills in order to achieve a common goal. Sometimes I think that those who work in research live in a dimension without borders, since I often happen to interact on the same day with researchers from all different continents. This confirms what Louis Pasteur said over a century ago: 'Science knows no country, because knowledge belongs to humanity, and is the torch which illuminates the world'.

What is the connection between your research and the city of Venice?
I am part of the CATMAT research group, which works on developing innovative catalysts and materials for sustainable processes. Recently, I have been working on a project involving the traditional natural Venetian marmorino, a plaster that is widely used in both exteriors and interiors of historic Venetian buildings. The project, in partnership with the company Uni.S.Ve. (Unione Stuccatori Veneziani - Union of Venetian Plasterers), aims to combine Venetian tradition with the innovation of research into nanostructured materials. The idea is to give marmorino self-cleaning properties, reducing atmospheric pollutants and improving antibacterial properties, through the use of multifunctional photocatalytic materials that exploit solar radiation alone.

Last update: 22/06/2022