The structure of interfaces plays a key role in processing and performance of crystalline functional materials, such as sensors, ferroelectric actuators, dielectrics and ionic conductors. Mechanics of materials are affected by interfacial properties as well, e.g. in the case of dislocation-grain boundary interaction. However, not only the properties of materials depend on interfaces, but the formation of a microstructure as well, i.e. sintering and grain growth. Possible impact on microstructure and its evolution arise due to the boundary structure, local defect redistribution, segregation, space charge, mechanical stresses and the anisotropy of transport processes at interfaces. These effects and their interplay with the materials properties need to be understood on a fundamental level in order to optimize a material and its microstructure for a given application.
This symposium covers basic and applied science topics on all aspects of interfaces, microstructure evolution, thermodynamics and their relationship to the materials properties in functional materials. According to the complexity of this field, a complete understanding needs modelling and simulation studies corresponding to experimental research. Talks bridging the gap of experiments and simulation are highly encouraged. The overall focus is on functional ceramics, but other crystalline materials are considered as well.