The Neto Group

Prof. Chiara Neto leads a group of enthusiastic scientists and engineers that are fascinated with interfacial phenomenon. They use an arsenal of advanced characterization techniques to understand the nanoscale behavior behind a range of unique and exciting anti-fouling, droplet shedding and water harvesting coatings.



Professor Chiara Neto

A/Prof Chiara Neto
Prof Chiara Neto (She/Her)

School of Chemistry

Room 349
+61 2 9351 2752
Chiara Neto

Chiara Neto received her Masters degree in Chemistry (1998) and PhD (2001) at the University of Florence, Italy. Her PhD work focused on experiments on surface forces and interfaces using the atomic force microscope. In 2002-2003 she worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Ulm in the Department of Applied Physics, headed by Prof. Stephan Herminghaus and at Saarland University, in the group of Prof. Karin Jacobs, working on the dewetting of thin polymer films. Between 2003 and 2006 she worked as an Australian Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the Australian National University in the Department of Applied Mathematics, working on nanorheology and micropatterning. In 2007 she moved to the University of Sydney, where she is currently Professor in Physical Chemistry and ARC Future Fellow. Since 2012 Chiara Neto is on the Board of Directors of the Australasian Colloid and Interface Society.

Dr Geosmin Turpin

Dr Geosmin Turpin (She/Her)

Postdoctoral Researcher
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730
Geosmin Turpin

Geosmin joined the Neto group at the middle of 2022 as a postdoctoral researcher after completing her PhD in the School of Chemistry at Monash University. During her candidature she explored surfactant-free methods for helping 1D and 2D nanoparticles to overcome their boundary issues and enrich to interfaces, allowing for the formation of nanomaterial coatings. She has continued to follow her interest in coatings, nanoscale topography and surface science in her current project, which is a partnership with Dulux looking at how nanofibers can be integrated into paint to make it more durable and environmentally friendly. Geosmin hopes by being visible she can pave the way for other transgender and neurodivergent scientists in the future.

Mr Leo James

Mr Leo James (He/Him)

PhD candidate
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730

Leo joined the Neto group at the start of 2023 as a PhD research student after completing his Bachelors’s and Masters’s degrees at UNSW. At UNSW, Leo fabricated and characterised branched ruthenium nanoparticles for water-splitting catalysis and worked in collaboration with DuPont Water Solutions to develop novel ultra-filtration (UF) membrane technologies.

Leo is continuing this trend of water-based research with the Neto research group and industry partner MicroTau. Under the supervision of Prof. Chiara Neto and co-supervisor Dr. Daniele Vigolo, he aims to understand microfluidic flow mechanisms for improving drag reduction of lubricant-infused surfaces.”


Dr Isaac Gresham

Dr Isaac Gresham (He/Him)

Postdoctoral Researcher
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730
Isaac Gresham

Isaac joined the Neto group in late 2021 as a postdoctoral researcher after completing his PhD at the University of New South Wales. During his PhD he used landmark infrastructure at the Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering to resolve the structure of solvated polymer interfaces. His PhD project transformed Isaac from a chemical engineering grad into some combination of an interface scientist, polymer chemist, data analyst and handyman.
His current project seeks to understand why covalently tethered nano-thin layers of silicone oil molecules behave as if they were a liquid interface.

Dr Reza Azadi

Postdoctoral Researcher
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730
Reza Azadi

Reza joined the Neto group in early 2024, having spent the previous eight months as a postdoctoral associate in Fluids & Interfaces Group, where he mainly applied optical flow measurement techniques to investigate shear-thinning meso-scale Taylor-Couette flows. He holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alberta, where he developed a meso-scale flow facility in the Applied ThermoFluids Lab. Using high-speed optical systems and micro-PIV, he examined cavitating non-Newtonian flows, studying the impact of shear-thinning and pressure gradients on near-wall turbulence and drag reduction. Leveraging his expertise in optical flow measurement, numerical simulation, coding, and data analysis, Reza’s current project focuses on scrutinising drag reduction at liquid-liquid interfaces, with a focus on advancing related applications.


Mr Jae Hyung Cho

Visiting Researcher
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730

Jae Hyung joined the Neto group in early 2024 as a visiting researcher while working for KCC. He is responsible for polymer synthesis at KCC, including antifouling coatings, powder coatings, ED coatings, structural adhesives, and polymers for electrical devices. His research interests focus on the fabricating slippery surfaces and their characteristics.


Mr Will Kristo

Undergraduate Research Student
School of Chemistry

Room 352
 +61 2 9351 7730

Will is a Chemistry Student on exchange from the University of Texas at Austin. His project focuses on applying slippery, antifouling coatings to laser-textured metal surfaces.




Dewpoint Ltd.

Dewpoint Innovations is a deep tech start-up born in 2022 out of research in the Neto group on atmospheric water capture. We put paint into climate action. Find out more.




  • Elena Colusso, Visiting Researcher March-April 2024, from the University of Padova. Project: Liquid-like sol-gel coatings
  • Fabio Figueiredo, Visiting PhD student February 2024, from the Sapienza Università di Roma). Project: Molecular dynamics of slippery covalently attached liquids. x
  • Laura Tricas, Visiting Student August 2022 – January 2023
  • Kosta Tsoukalas, Undergrad volunteer July 2022
  • Seamus Lilley, Undergrad volunteer June-July 2022
  • Margot Attali,Visiting Master student 2020, Microfluidic flow on liquid-infused surfaces.
  • Owen Schumacher, Visiting Master student 2020, Dropwise condensation on porous polymer surfaces.
  • Roisin D’Art, Visiting Master student 2019, Food safe surface via liquid infused surfaces.
  • Felix Vuellers, Visiting PhD student 2017, Contact line movement over structured surfaces.
  • Truis Smith-Palmer, Visiting Professor, 2016-2017, from the Department of Chemistry at St Francis Xavier University, NS, Canada.
  • Nan Gao, Postdoc, 2017, “Contact line dynamics on micro-patterned surfaces”.




  • Mr Seamus Lilley, Honours Student 2023, “Detection of Gas Nano and Micro Layers at the Oil-Water Interface”
  • Dr. Anthony Katselas, PhD Student, 2019-2023, “Surface Coatings for the Enhancement of Atmospheric Water Capture
  • Dr. Jun Hong, PhD Student, 2018-2023, “Liquid-Infused Surfaces for Anti– Thrombogenic Cardiovascular Medical Devices”
  • Chris Vega, PhD Student, 2018-2022 “Fluid Slip On Lubricant-Infused Surfaces
  • Liwen Zhu, Postdoc 2016-2021, “Industry linkage program – the application of Janus nanoparticles in paint formulations”.
  • Sam Peppou-Chapman, PhD student, 2017-2020; “Distribution and Deplection of Lubricant on Anti-fouling Lubricant-infused Surfaces”.
  • Dr Riccardo Parin, Postdoc Nov 2019-Oct 2020; “Advanced Capture of Water from the Atmosphere”.
  • Dr Renzo Fenati, Postdoc 2019-2020; “Anti-fouling properties of liquid-infused surfaces”.
  • Ahmed Owais Mohamed Ahmed, PhD student, 2017-2020, “Driving Forces for Wetting and Adsorption on Functional Surfaces”; Now employed by the vibrational spectroscopy node in Sydney Analytical at the University of Sydney.
  • Liam Scarratt, PhD student, 2015-2018, “Wetting and liquid flow on lubricant infused nano- and micro-structured surfaces”; now working at the University of Geneva.
  • Anthony Katselas, Honours student, 2018 – 2019, “The halogen bond driven self-assembly of 1-iodoperfluorododecane on graphite”.
  • Monica Tonelli, Erasmus Mundus Visiting Scholar, 2017-2018, “Surface modification of cement surfaces”.
  • Elena Colusso, Erasmus Mundus Visiting Scholar, 2017-2018, “Patterning of sol-gel films”.
  • Erin Humphries, Summer Scholar, 2016-2017, “Anti-biofouling SLIPS surfaces”.
  • Jun Ki Hong, Honours Student, 2016-2017,”Self-assembled perfluorocarbon monolayer functionalisation of silicon surface driven by halogen bonding”.
  • Cameron Ware, Honours student, 2016, “Fabrication and characterisation of slippery lubricant infused polymeric wrinkled surfaces”.
  • Omar Al-Khayat, PhD student, 2013-2016, “Dewetting polymer bilayers by solvent vapour annealing: A pathway to manufacturing biomimetic water harvesting surface coatings”; now working at Laing O’Rourke Engineering Excellence Group.
  • Elliot Wood, Honours student, 2015-2016, “Fabrication of self-assembled mono-, Bi- and trilayers based on halogen bonding”.
  • Hien Duong, Postdoc 2014-2016; “All-polymeric Janus nanoparticles”; now Research Fellow at the University of Technology Sydney.
  • Ms Keyun Shou, Honours 2015; “Self-assembled monolayers based on halogen bonding”.
  • Mr David Beck, Honours 2015; “Dewetted polymer patterns for atmospheric water capture”.
  • Manuel Ghezzi, PhD student “Functional surface micropatterns by dewetting of thin polymer films” 2012-2015; now Senior Researcher at Apollo Qu’mica, Mexico.
  • Wei Zhao, Postdoc; “New polymers for water capture”, Oct-Dec 2014; current postdoc at AIBN, the University of Queensland.
  • Ben Hoatson, Summer scholar, 2014, “Polymeric superhydrophobic surfaces”.
  • Stuart Thickett, Postdoc; “Micro patterned surfaces for water capture”, 2009-2010; then “Micropatterning of proteins and cells on dewetted thin polymer films” 2010-2012; current Vice-Chancellor’s Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, CAMDI, School of Chemical Engineering, The University of New South Wales.
  • Thomas Lee, Honours student, “The origin of the contact electrification of insulators” 2009; then PhD student 2010–2013 “Tunable nanopatterns formed by polymer brushes”. Now postdoc in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • Andrew Michael Telford, PhD student “Advanced functional coatings for biomedical applications: patterning cells onto biomaterials” 2008-2011, then Post-doc 2011-2013. Now postdoc at the Experimental Solid State Physics department, Imperial College London.
  • Eric Charrault, Postdoc 2012-2014; Now postdoc at the Mawson Institute, university of South Australia, Adelaide.
  • Liwen Zhu, PhD Student 2009-2012, “Reliable measurement of slip using colloid probe atomic force microscopy”.
  • Say Kwang Lim, “Covalent protein immobilisation and patterning on thin polymer films”, MSc 2012. Honours student “Preferential protein adsorption on micro-phase separated block-copolymer thin films” 2009. Now Assistant Chemist at Nanosonics, Sydney.
  • Yusuf Ziya Sahin, Graduate Diploma student, 2009. Thesis title: “Investigating nanowire growth using block copolymer templates”.
  • Tanushan Samuel-Thambiah, Honours student, 2009, “An investigation into the properties and applications of nickel nanowires”.
  • Veronica Fung, Summer Scholar, 2008, “Superhydrophobic Nickel Nanocarpets”.
  • Kyle Joseph, Honours student 2008, “Nanocarpets and More: Control over Surface Wettability and Patterning using Metallic Nanowires”.
  • William Brant, Summer scholar, 2007, “Electrodeposition of Nickel nanocarpets”.