Posts by Gabriele Cesare Sosso

The ICE Group goes to Hever – 1000 GBP raised for WaterAid !

Following the victory of Phil, Gabriele and Angelos at the Hever Castle Triathlon Half-Ironman relay, we just managed (right on time, as Christmas is almost upon us!) to raise 1000 GBP for WaterAid… mission accomplished!


Thanks so very much to each and everyone of those who contributed! Providing clean water to each and every person in the world is such an important achievement to strive for – we are so grateful for the opportunity to help with that.

Chances are some of us will have to defend the title next year.. we will keep you posted!

In the meantime, have a look at our JustGiving page: Tis the season to be jolly!

Swim, Bike & Run,

Phil, Gabriele & Angelos


The ICE Group wins the Best Use of ARCHER Competition

Gabriele, Martin and Philpp have been awarded one of the ten prizes the ARCHER team has allocated for “The Best Use” of ARCHER, the outstanding UK National Supercomputing Service. The award consists of 3000 £, which will be used to support travel to the US for building collaborations – thus helping to develop the next generation of outstanding researchers utilising HPC. The award, which recognises the impact o
f our work about the heterogeneous nucleation of ice, will be officially presented to competition winners at the next ARCHER Champions Workshop in September 2017 in the south of England – stay tuned!

The ICE Group just had a Pint of Science

The ICE Group joined forces with the ZOOX Collective ( to take part into a public exhibit sponsored by A Pint of Science (, a non-profit organisation that brings some of the most brilliant scientists to your local pub to discuss their latest research and findings with you!



In tune with one of the most prominent research interests of the Group, we have put forward some ideas and some numbers (brilliantly translated into proper art by ZOOX!) about the formation of ice…

The Ice IV paper is featured in ACS Spotlights





Our recent paper about Ice IV  has been featured in Spotlights, a new initiative of The Journal of Phyicsal Chemistry Letters – which is Open Access! Here is the link…


A collaborative work about high-pressure ice(s) has been accepted by JPCL


iceIVIs High-Density Amorphous Ice Simply a ‘Derailed’ State along the Ice I to Ice IV Pathway? In this paper, just accepted by The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, we try to answer that question by investigating a colection of high-pressure phase transitions – of ice, and ammonium fluoride as well, digging deep into the importance of the hydrogen bond network. The paper builds upon the excellent experiments of Jacob J. Shephard and Christoph G. Salzmann, topping up things with first principle simulations performed by Sanliang Ling and Ben Slater – a truly collaborative, UCL-branded work!

Ice Formation on Kaolinite: A Molecular Dynamics Investigation now Published in The Journal of Chemical Physics


In the attempt of pinpointing the practical challenges involved with atomistic simulations of heterogeneous ice nucleation, we have investigated ice formation on kaolinite, digging deep into issues such as the impact of surface relaxation and of the force field on the kinetics of nucleation. Our investigation has just been recently published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry, have a look!


The Kinetics of Heterogeneous Ice Nucleation on Kaolinite: now published on The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters

And by kinetics, we actually mean the nucleation rate, which is not such an easy quantity to compute when dealing with heterogeneous ice nucleation.

This is why we have taken on Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 16.10.46board some of the best people in the enhanced sampling community (Davide Donadio, Tianshu Li and Gareth Tribello), with the aim of computing the nucleation rate and of unraveling the microscopic mechanism of ice formation on kaolinite, a prototypical ice nucleating agent of great relevance in e.g. atmospheric science.

An in-depth analysis of the nucleation trajectories on top of the several millions of CPU hours needed to converge our forward flux sampling simulations eventually led to this Letter, which has just been made open access – enjoy the reading!

Crystal Nucleation in Liquids: now published on Chemical Reviews

It’s finally here: “Crystal Nucleation in Liquids: Open Questions and Future Challenges in Molecular Dynamics Simulation” required more than a year of extraordinary teamwork, culminating in a rather massive paper now published on Chemical Reviews.


This work takes stock of the numerous molecular dynamics
simulations that, in the past few decades, have unraveled crucial aspects of crystal
nucleation in liquids. We discuss simulations of such
processes as ice nucleation,  the formation of hydrates and the crystallization of molecules in solutions – and much more.

What better way to get to know the marvels of ordering atoms and molecules in thermodynamically convenient bricks? Have a look at the publications page…



Angelos has been awarded the RSC Surfaces and Interfaces Award!

Angelos has been awarded the Royal Society of Chemistry Surfaces and Interfaces Award, for “outstanding contributions towards the understanding of complex aqueous interfaces and the formation of ice at such interfaces.” More information can be found here: Congratulations Angelos!


New Humboldt-Fellow in the group

Julia was successful in her application for an Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and will continue her work in the ICE group with the Feodor Lynen Fellowship of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation as of 1st June 2020. Congratulations Julia!  


The ICE group is moving!

Angelos has accepted a position in Cambridge, and so the ICE group is moving! It’s going to be a reasonably slow multi-year phase transition. You can find more information in the official announcement. Congratulations, Angelos, and all the best for this exciting new opportunity!


Angelos appears on Clarivate’s ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ list!

Angelos has appeared on Clarivate’s ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ list for the second year in a row. Inclusion on the list is based on the number of recent publications that ranked in the top 1% by citations in a given field and year. For further details see: Congratulations!


Martin wins PhD prize!

Martin won the Marshall Stoneham prize for his PhD thesis on “Merging data-driven and computational methods to understand ice nucleation”. It is awarded by the Condensed Matter & Materials Physics Group (CMMP) for outstanding postgraduate research. Well done!


Fabian wins Best Poster prize at the MMM Hub conference!

The second annual Materials & Molecular Modelling (MMM) Hub Conference and User Meeting took place on 3-4 September. Many excellent talks demonstrated how the computational resources provided by the MMM Hub are used to tackle challenges in many areas of biological, chemical, and physical research. This was also illustrated by more than 50 posters, spanning […]


Science and sports in York

Last weekend, the ICE group gathered in York for the International Materials Simulation Workshop. Current and former members as well as collaborators talked about their recent projects and discussed how to tackle society’s big challenges, utilize advancements in methodology and make the most of fruitful collaborations. The meeting highlighted the diverse range of problems that […]


Triple Triathlon at Castle Howard in support of WaterAid

The ICE group will be participating in the Castle Triathlon series for the third year in a row. This time, three relays teams are going to compete at Castle Howard, near York, on 21 July. They will be swimming, cycling and running a combined distance of roughly 280 km! As part of the tradition, the […]


Open postdoc position (University of Manchester & ICE group)

A 2-year postdoc position is available in the Condensed Matter Physics group at the University of Manchester. The project will be carried out in collaboration with the ICE group and involves developing and applying theoretical models to understand the anomalous dielectric behaviour of water under confinement (Fumagalli et al. Science 360, 1339-1342, 2018). You can […]


Angelos sets world record at the London Marathon!

Angelos set a new world record for the “fastest marathon dressed as a scientist (male)” at this year’s London Marathon, finishing in 3:22:51. Congratulations! He also managed to raise more than £3000 in support of WaterAid, an international charity working to provide clean water and decent toilets to people all over the world. Many thanks […]


Group gatherings