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Alina Ciach

Alina Ciach

By the decision of the Academic Council of the Institute for Condensed Matter Physics of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine of February 22, 2022, the title of Doctor honoris causa was conferred on Alina Ciach (Institute of Physical Chemistry of Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland) for the development of the density functional theory for inhomogeneous systems with mesoscopic-scale fluctuations, for important results in the theory of phase transitions of ionic fluids, amphiphilic and colloidal systems with competing interactions, as well as for her strong involvement in various forms of scientific collaboration with the ICMP.

Alina Ciach was born on April 16, 1955 in Łęczyca, central Poland. She graduated from the Faculty of Physics at the University of Warsaw and received her master's degree in 1979. In 1986, she defended her thesis at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAS) on the topic “Statistical Mechanics of Interfacial Boundaries” and received a PhD degree. Later, Alina Ciach conducted her postdoctoral research at the Institute of Theoretical Physics at the University of Trondheim, Norway (1987), and as a fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation at the University of Essen, Germany (1988). In 1994, she defended her habilitation thesis at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the PAS. In 2002, she was awarded the highest academic distinction in Poland - the title of professor. In 2005, her scientific work was honored with the State Award of the Republic of Poland - the Golden Cross of Merit.

Alina Ciach's scientific interests cover a wide range of problems in the physics of soft matter, which include the self-aggregation phenomena in systems with competing interactions, ionic systems and microemulsions, the effects of boundaries and confinement on the structure and thermodynamic properties of simple and complex liquids. Special attention in her research is paid to phase transitions. She developed a theory suitable for describing inhomogeneous mixtures with fluctuations on mesoscopic scales. She showed the importance of taking such fluctuations into account for the correct description of the phase behavior of systems with spontaneous inhomogeneities. Within the framework of this theory, a universal sequence of phases is obtained, which is consistent with experimental data and computer simulations for many systems with self-assembly.

Alina Ciach also engages in scientific and organizational activities. She has been a leading partner in a number of national and international research projects, cooperates with research groups in Spain, France, Germany, USA, Portugal, Australia, Great Britain. In 2017-2021, she was ta project coordinator of the EU Horizon 2020 MSCA-RISE research and innovation program (grant No. 73426 “Effects of confinement in non-homogeneous systems”), which involved a research group from the ICMP. Alina Ciach pays significant attention to the training of scientific youth. Under her supervision, doctoral students and habilitated doctors have graduated. She also coordinated the prestigious international doctoral program at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the PAN (“Fundamental research with applications in bio- and nanotechnology and information processing”, MPD/2009/1). She is a co-author of the textbook by R. Holyst, A. Poniewierski, and A.Ciach, "Thermodynamics for Chemists, Physicists, and Engineers" published by UKSW Publishing House (2005).

Professor A. Ciach has long-term and strong contacts with the ICMP of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. She is a member of the Supervisory Board at the ICMP, an active participant in international conferences held in Lviv, a member of the Program Committee of the StatPhys conference series, a member of the editorial board of the journal “Condensed Matter Physics”, published by the ICMP.