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Roberto Di Leonardo
Dipartimento di Fisica
NANOTEC-CNR Istituto di Nanotecnologia
Scuola Superiore di Studi Avanzati Sapienza
Università di Roma "La Sapienza"
p.le A. Moro, 2, 00185 Roma, Italy
office:+39 06 4991 3518
lab:+39 06 4969 3294
fax:+39 06 4463158
email: roberto.dileonardo@phys.uniroma1.it
Fortune (reload for another):
Universe, n.: The problem.

Research Activities   Links and Downloads

Optical Trapping

Micron sized beads can be trapped in regions of high light intensity. A laser beam wavefront can be sculpted by a computer generated hologram and focused on an almost arbitrary intensity distribution. We're working on applications of holographic optical micro- manipulation to microfluidics, statistical mechanics, colloidal science. [more]

Soft Matter

Life at the mesoscopic scale can be much different than our macroscopic world. Fluids flow without inertia, liquid interfaces can be as hard as walls, thermal agitation of the environment kicks so strongly that objects wander around restlessly. We're interested in colloidal interactions, complex rheology of suspensions, surface phenomena. [more]

Statistical Mechanics

Thermal fluctuations drive dynamics on the meso and microscopic scales. Energy provides the background landscape for the resulting motions. Using experiments and computer simulations we look at both the single particle Brownian motion in external force fields and the slow, cooperative relaxations in glassy systems arising from highly complex multidimensional landscapes. [more]


We work at the design of new light driven devices and sensors providing non - invasive tools to manipulate and analyze micro - environments such as microfluidic devices or biological samples. [more]

Research group

C. Maggi


S. Bianchi




G. Vizsnyiczai


G. Frangipane

Graduate student

News, press and media:

06/11/12 - ERC Starting Grant
05/05/11 - 2 Postdoc Positions available
26/01/11 - NASCAR bacteria
04/07/10 - PhD positions available


2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006

Recent Work:

A self assembled catalitic micromotor

A rotating micromotor can self-assemble starting from randomly distributed Janus particles and microfabricated passive ratchets. [more]

Light to work conversion at the micron-scale

We demonstrate that light absorbing microgears, sitting on a liquid-air interface, can efficiently convert light into rotational motion through a thermo-capillary effect. [more]

Bacteria deliver colloidal cargoes on tartget sites

We show that bacteria can autonomously transport colloidal cargoes onto target sites that are surrounded by micro-fabricated landscapes. [more]

Trapping at extreme conditions

We have demonstrated that the full power of holographic optical tweezers can be available inside diamond anvil cells for high pressure studies in physics and biology. [more]

Seeing and touching through an optical fiber

We have demonstrated that a single multimode optical fiber can be used as a submillimiter probe for interactive micromanipulation and fluorescence microscopy. [more]

Lab on Chip review

Holographic optical tweezers and their relevance to lab on chip devices. A Critical Review by Padgett and Di Leonardo for Lab on Chip journal. [more]

Swimming with an image

E.coli bacteria can swim along straight lines, but in proximity to a water-air surface, the flows produced by its hydrodynamic image send it circling counterclockwise when viewed from above. [more]

Hologram transmission through multimode fibers

Computer generated holograms can travel along multimode fibers and produce dynamic light patterns on the other end. [more]

Applets, drawings, movies:

Pagine interne:

L'angolo dei miti, Calendario Lab, Didattica