The Mn+1AXn phases, or “MAX” phases, are nano-laminates, where M is an early transition metal, A belongs to groups 13-16, and X is either C or N. They were discovered some decades ago. MAX phases crystallize in a hexagonal structure and uniquely combine both metallic and ceramic characteristics. In the research line Nanolamellar & 2D Materials, we grow single crystals of MAX phases using high temperature solution growth  and determine their physical properties, focusing on the anisotropies expected from their nano-lamellar structure. To cite but a few examples, in collaboration with our various partners, we have measured magneto-transport , band structure  or phonon dispersion  anisotropies of MAX phase single crystals. We do not limit ourselves to nanolamellar carbides, but we have also started to develop activities on nanolamellar borides  and rare-earth nanolaminates .
We also use MAX and MAB phase crystals to study their exfoliation kinetics  and to produce two-dimensional (2D) materials as MXenes using wet chemistry or molten salt assisted synthesis. The library of the synthesized materials includes Ti3C2Tz, Ti2CTz, Ti2C0.5N0.5Tz, Ti3CNTz, V2CTz, Nb2CTz, just to name a few. We explore the physical characteristics of synthesized 2D materials, in particular transport properties, and their integration into various applications belonging to the fields of sensing , photovoltaics , and energy .
We conduct our research through a rich collaborative network, involving Institut Néel (France), ESRF (France), Université Catholique de Louvain (Belgium), Drexel University (USA), Nagoya University (Japan), Institut Pprime (France) and The Institute of Structure of Matter (Italy).
MORE-MAX (2018-2021, coordinator)
Type: International Strategic Partnership program, IDEX Univ. Grenoble Alpes & ESRF
Title: Probing the magnetism of each chemical element in rare earth-based MAX phases
Partnership: European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF, Grenoble), Université de Linköping (Suède)
MORE-MXènes (2018-2021, coordinator)
Type: FLAG-ERA call, European programm from Flagship Graphene
Title: Magnetically ordered rare earth 2D MXenes
Partnership: Linköping University (Sweden), Institut Néel (Grenoble), Université Catholique de Louvain (Belgium)
Chaire of Excellence Program of M. W. Barsoum (2017-2019, coordinator)
Type: Nanosciences Fondation call, Univ. Grenoble Alpes Fondation
Title: Production of MXenes on large surface area from MAX phase single crystals and fabrication of 2D electron devices
Partnership: Drexel University (USA), Institut Néel (Grenoble), CEA-PHELIQS (Grenoble)