January 17, 2023


Miriam M. Unterlass

Principal Investigator


Miriam studied chemistry, process engineering and materials science in Germany, the UK, and France, and obtained a PhD at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in 2011. She worked as a postdoc at the École École Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles in Paris, France, before starting her own group at the Technical University of Vienna (TUW), Austria, in 2012. Miriam was tenured asisstant and subsequently associate professor.at TUW and obtained her habilitation in materials chemistry in 2018. In 2021, she became full professor of solid state chemistry at theUniversity of Konstanz. Since 2018, Miriam is an Adjunct Principal Investigator at the Research Centre for Molecular Medicine of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (CeMM) in Vienna (Austria). The ambition of her group’s research is to find and develop sustainable advanced materials and molecules without compromising the compounds’ performance and diversity, especially through employing water as reaction and processing medium. Her team has pioneered the chemical synthesis of defined organic compounds in high-temperature water and hold several patents on these innovations. In 2018 Miriam co-founded her first company UGP Materials GmbH, winner of several start-up awards (e.g., Sallinger Fonds S&B award 2018; RSC sustainable technologies competition finalist 2019) aiming at commercializing hydrothermal polymerization of high-performance polymers. She has received numerous accolades, including the Staatspreis Patent 2020, the FWF START prize 2017, the Austrian founder’s award PHÖNIX 2016, the Anton Paar Science award 2015, and has been elected as member of the Young Academy of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (ÖAW) in 2018. She is alumna of the Fast Track program of the Robert Bosch foundation (2016-2018) and of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) of the U.S. Department of State (2018). Services to the academic community include serving as associate editor of the Journal of Materials Chemistry A and Materials Advances, and as representative for materials and solid state chemistry of the Alexander von Humboldt foundation. Miriam is an expert in green and sustainable chemistry, teaches seminars on the topic, and advises as member of several advisory boards (scientific advisory board “Materials” of the German Federal Institute for Materials research and Testing (BAM), scientific advisory board of the European Forum Alpbach).

Fabián A. Amaya García

PhD Student

Fabián studied chemistry in Bogotá, Colombia, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He joined our group in 2018. In his main project Fabián develops new dyes for biological applications, with a focus on sustainable synthesis of the dyes.

D. Alonso Cerrón Infantes

Lab Manager

Alonso studied natural sciences and chemistry in Lima, Peru, and Vienna, Austria. He joined our group in 2014. In his main research project, he develops sustainable new high-performance polymers and their water-based processing.

Olivier Gazil

PhD student

Olivier studied chemical engineering in Montréal, Canada. Olivier is pursuing a highly collaborative and international PhD project, with extended stays in the labs of his co-supervisors: Prof. Nick Virgilio (Montréal) & Prof. Favis (Montréal), Dr. Gauffre (Rennes) and Prof. Unterlass (Konstanz). He joined us in 2018 for 6 months and is back since September 2022. In his project, Olivier synthesizes polymer-metal hybrid materials in water as reaction medium and applies them as catalysts in semi-automated robotics-assisted synthesis.

Elana Harbalik


Elana did an apprenticeship as chemical-technical assistant and subsequently worked in the pharmaceutical and personal care industry from 2004 until 2009, before joining the University of Konstanz. She joined our group in 2021. In her main project, Elana investigates co-crystals as sustainable precursors for advanced materials synthesis. Furthermore, she is responsible for our PXRD and SAXS equipments and is one of the radiation protection officers of the Departmemt of Chemistry.  

Tobias Klenk

Research assistant (HiWi)

Tobias is studying Chemistry at the University of Konstanz. He joined our group in July 2022 for his bachelor thesis and stayed with us as research assistant. His main project deals with the hydrothermal synthesis of heteroaromatic high-performance polymers and their water-based processing.

Florian Vollstädt

MSc student

Florian studies Chemistry at the University of Konstanz. He joined us in January 2023 for his master thesis. In his project, he develops additive-assisted hydrothermal syntheses of advanced organic materials.

Frank Sailer

PhD student

Frank studied Nanoscience at the University of Konstanz. He joined us in March 2023 for his PhD thesis. In his project, he explores the synthesis of hybrid materials based on silicates.

Robert Pazdzior


Robert studied Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Trent University in Peterborough, Canada. He obtained his PhD in 2022 at the CeMM  Research Center for Molecular Medicine of the Austrian Academy of Science in Vienna, Austria. Robert joined us in 2022. In his main project, he develops an automated platform for the discovery and optimization of syntheses in water.

Luca Schwenger

BSc student

Luca studies Chemistry at the University of Konstanz. He joined our group in July 2023 for his bachelor thesis, which focuses on the synthesis of polyimide materials.

Martina Lexner

Administrative Assistant

Martina joined us in 2019. She supports Prof. Unterlass with the project management and administration of our third-party funding projects.

Lukas Leimhofer


Lukas studied technical chemistry in Vienna, Austria. Lukas joined us for the first time in 2015, the working on sustainable hybrid materials’ synthesis and processing. In his current main projects, Lukas works on the hydrothermal synthesis of small molecules for application in biology.

Celine Kuchler

Research assistant (HiWi)

Celine is studying Nanoscience at the University of Konstanz and joined our group in September as research intern and stayed with us as research assistant from February 2023 onwards. In her main project she studies morphology control in the semi-automated aqueous precipitation of microparticles.

Maximilian Schürmann

MSc student

Max is studying chemistry at the University of Konstanz and joined our group in February 2023 for his Master thesis. In his main project Max works on in-line/on-line spectroscopy for flow chemistry.

Lisa Bernhard

Bachelor student

Lisa is studying nanoscience at the University of Konstanz and joined our group in April 2023 for her bachelor thesis. In her main project Lisa works on in situ hydrothermal synthesis of metallic nanoparticles in soft matter.

Yurii Kolbediuk

Research assistant (HiWi)

Yurii studied chemistry at the Donetsk National University, Ukraine, where he performed his thesis on biologically active compounds and graduated in 2018. He continued his studies at the University of Konstanz. He joined our group in June 2023 as a research assistant. In his project he works on minerals, with a special focus on X-ray crystallographic analysis.

Claire Selg

BSc student

Claire studies Chemistry at the University of Konstanz. She joined our group in July 2023 for her bachelor thesis, which focuses on the synthesis and characterization of functional pigments.

Frederic Hallmann

MSc student

Frederic studies Chemistry at the University of Konstanz. He first joined our group in August 2022 for an internship and has returned in June 2023 for his master thesis. He will be working on developing Sulfur containing high performance materials.

Tejasvi Singh

MSc Research Intern

Tejasvi is currently studying Nanoscience at the University of Konstanz. She previously studied Chemistry in Dubai and joined our group in August 2023 for a research internship to process waterborne high-performance materials.

We are always interested in highly motivated and dedicated coworkers. Currently we have plenty of interesting opportunities for Master and Bachelor theses. Please contact Miriam to learn more about the currently available topics.

Future position openings will be announced.

Alumni & Alumnae

Hipassia M. Moura (Postdoc)

Arthur Lassus (Guest PhD Student)

Brendan Walker (MSc Student)

Marianne Lahnsteiner (PhD student)

Bettina Baumgartner (MSc student & PhD student)

Matthias Bergthaler (BSc student)

Daniel B. Block (Postdoc)

Patricia Brandl (BSc student)

Elias Bumbaris (PhD student)

Tobia Cavalli (MSc student & PhD student) 

Suman Chandra (Postdoc)

Grzegorz Dębowski (PhD student) 

Idil Erdem (BSc student)

Sebastian España Orozco (MSc student)

Johannes Essmeister (external MSc student)

Patrick W. Fritz (MSc student)

Heribert Gerstner (BSc student)

Daniel V. Glöcklhofer (BSc student)

Katharina Gürich (BSc student)

Michael Hahn (BSc student)

Rosa M. Hassfurther (BSc student)

Jana Pauline Heinz (BSc student)

Eleonora Hochreiner (MSc student)

Johannes Höchtl (MSc student)

Musthafa Iqbal (PhD student)

Konstantin Kriechbaum (BSc student)

Lukas P. Leutgeb (MSc student) 

Catarina I. O. Martins (PhD student)

Maximilian Raab (BSc student)

Thomas Roiss (BSc student)

Manuel Reiter (BSc student, & external MSc student)

Martina Schroffenegger (MSc student)

Marwan Simaan (Postdoc)

Sophia T. Steinbacher (BSc student)

Michael J. Taubländer (MSc student, PhD student & Postdoc)

Sophia Thiele (BSc student & external MSc student)

Josef Wendrinski (Postdoc)

Fabian Zechmeister (BSc student)

Miriam Zintl (external MSc student)