Luís António Martins Ferreira Dias Carlos

Full Professor | Physics Department, University of Aveiro


BSc in Physics, 1982, University of Coimbra.

Ph.D in Physics (Solid State Physics), University of Évora, 1995.

Agregação (‘Habilitation’) in Physics, University of Aveiro, 2004

Full Professor, University of Aveiro (Physics Department), since 2006.


Luminescence nanothermometry

Applications of organic-inorganic hybrids in luminescent solar concentrators, solid-state lighting, and integrated optics

Light emission of organic-inorganic hybrids, silicates, nanocrystals and metal organic frameworks

Crystal-field, local coordination and energy transfer in lanthanide-based compounds

Luminescent, magnetic, and luminescent/magnetic nanoparticles,  single-ion and single-molecule magnets

Self-assembly and emergence of complexity in organic/inorganic hybrids



Selected (10) scientific publications


(10) FE Maturi, CDS Brites, EC Ximendes, D Jaque, SJL Ribeiro, LD Carlos, Above and Beyond: 10-Fold Gain in the Performance of Luminescence Thermometers by Multiparametric Sensing and Multiple Regression, Laser Photonics Rev. 15, 2100301 (2021). First demonstration how the performance of multiparametric luminescent thermometers can be further improved by simply applying new analysis routes.


(9) J Long, MS Ivanov, VA Khomchenko, J-M Thibaud, J Rouquette, RAS Ferreira, LD Carlos, B Donnadieu, MSC Henriques, JA Paixão, Y Guari, J Larionova, Room Temperature Magnetoelectric Control of Ferroelectric Domains in a Luminescent Ytterbium(III) Based Complex, Science 367, 671 (2020). First demonstration of magnetoelectric coupling in a paramagnetic ferroelectric molecular crystal.


(8) R Piñol, J Zeler, CDS. Brites, Y Gu, P Téllez, ANC Neto, TE da Silva, R Moreno-Loshuertos, P Fernandez-Silva, A Gallego, L Martinez-Lostao, A Martínez, LD Carlos, A Millán, Real-Time Intracellular Temperature Imaging Using Lanthanide-Bearing Polymeric Micelles Nano Lett. 20, 6466 (2020). Develop of a unique system for intracellular temperature mapping in a fluorescence microscope using luminescent Ln3+-bearing polymeric micellar probes.


(7) CDS Brites, M Fuertes, P Angelomé, ED Martínez, PP Lima, G Soler-Illia, LD Carlos, Tethering Luminescent Thermometry and Plasmonics: Light Manipulation to Assess Real-Time Thermal Flow in Nanoarchitectures, Nano Lett. 17, 4746 (2017). First time the thermal conductivity of SiO2 & TiO2 mesoporous nanolayers was measured with a non-destructive method joining plasmonic NPs and molecular luminescence thermometers.


(6) CDS Brites, X Xie, ML Debasu, X Qin, J Rocha, X Liu, LD Carlos, Instantaneous Ballistic Velocity of Suspended Brownian Nanocrystals Measured by Upconversion Nanothermometry, Nature Nanotechnol., 11, 851 (2016). Breakthrough methodology to measure the instantaneous velocity of Brownian particles of sub-100 nm. First time evidence on size- or shape-independent Brownian motion in dilute nanofluids.


(5) L Li, Y Zhu, X Zhou, CDS Brites, D Ananias, Z Lin, FA Almeida Paz, J Rocha, W Huang, LD Carlos, Visible-light Excited Luminescent Thermometer Based on Single Lanthanide Organic Frameworks, Adv. Funct. Mater. 26, 8677 (2016). First example of a metal organic framework thermometer operative over a wide temperature range (including the physiological), upon excitation with visible light (450 nm).


(4) S Balabhadra, ML Debasu, CDS Brites, LAO. Nunes, OL Malta, J Rocha, M Bettinelli, LD Carlos, Boosting the Sensitivity of Nd3+-based Luminescent Nanothermometers, Nanoscale 7, 17261 (2015). Highly sensitive luminescent nanothermometers operating in the NIR spectral range were fabricated. Ingenious method for measuring the relative thermal sensitivity.


(3) R Piñol, CDS Brites, R Bustamante, A Martínez, NJO Silva, JL Murillo, R Cases, J Carrey, C Estepa, F Palacio, LD Carlos, A Millán, Joining Time-Resolved Thermometry and Magnetic-Induced Heating in a Single Nanoparticle Unveils Intriguing Thermal Properties at the Nanoscale, ACS Nano, 9, 3134–3142 (2015). Time-resolved thermometry under an ac magnetic field evidenced the failure of using macroscopic thermal parameters to describe heat diffusion at the nanoscale.


(2) ML Debasu, D Ananias, I Pastoriza-Santos, LM Liz-Marzan, J Rocha, LD Carlos, All-In-One Optical Heater-Thermometer Nanoplatform Operative From 300 to 2000 K Based on Er3+ Emission and Blackbody Radiation, Adv. Mater., 25, 4868–4874 (2013). A step forward towards local temperature sensing: fully original platforms joining Au nanoheaters and (Gd,Yb,Er)2O3 nanothermometers. Unambiguous attribution of the white light emission observed for high excitation laser power densities to an incandescence process.


(1) CDS Brites, PP Lima, NJO Silva, A Millán, VS Amaral, F Palacio, LD Carlos, A Luminescent Molecular Thermometer for Long-Term Absolute Temperature Measurements at the Nanoscale, Adv. Mater., 22, 4499–4504 (2010). First example of ratiometric luminescent thermometers based on two-centres emission, a step forward relative to the single Ln3+-based devices that have been proposed until then.




C.D.S. Brites, S Balabhadra, L.D. Carlos, Lanthanide-Based Thermometers: At the Cutting-Edge of Luminescence Thermometry,Adv.Opt.Mater 7,1801239 (2019).

S. Parola, L. D. Carlos et al., Optical Properties of Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Materials and Their Applications, Adv. Func. Mater. 26, 6506 (2016).

C.D.S. Brites, A Millán, L.D. Carlos, Lanthanides in Luminescent Thermometry, in Handbook on the Physics and Chemistry of Rare Earths, Ed. by J.-C. Bünzli & V. K. Pecharsky, Vol. 49, Elsevier B.V. (2016), pp. 339–427.

C.D.S. Brites, L. D. Carlos et al., Thermometry at the Nanoscale, Nanoscale 4, 4799 (2012).

L. D. Carlos et al., Progress on Lanthanide-Based Organic-Inorganic Hybrid Phosphors, Chem. Soc. Rev. 40, 536 (2011).

J. Rocha, L. D. Carlos et al. Multifunctional Luminescent Lanthanides-Based Metal-Organic Frameworks, Chem. Soc. Rev. 40, 926 (2011).

L.D. Carlos et al., Lanthanide-Containing Light-Emitting Organic-Inorganic Hybrids: A Bet on the Future, Adv. Mater. 21, 509 (2009).


Professional Affiliations & Memberships

2021-2025: Member (elected) of the Board of University of Aveiro (UAVR).

Since 2010: Member, Scientific Board, Physics Department, UAVR.

Since 2011: Member of the Scientific Board of the MAP-FIS PhD programme (joint doctoral programme in Physics of University of Minho, University of Aveiro and University of Porto). 2008-2010: Member of the Executive Board, 2010 Director.

2015–2019: Member of the Government Board of EJD-FunMat, a European Joint Doctoral programme in the field of functional materials research, financed by EC (H2020-MSCA-ITN-2014, grant number 641640).

2010–2017: Chairman of the Board in charge of the nominations of professors in the area of sciences, UAVR.

2010-2017: Chair of the group responsible for the nomination of professors in the area of sciences, University of Aveiro,

2009–2019: Vice-director of CICECO–Aveiro Institute of Materials.

2004–2008: Chairman of the Scientific Board of the Physics Department, UAVR.

2004–2008: Member of the executive committee of the Scientific Council of UAVR.

1999–2001: Pedagogic chair of the BSc in Physical Engineering, UAVR.

1995-1996: Vice-dean of the Physics Department, University of Évora.


Najing Tech Visiting Professorship, Nanjing Tech University, P.R. China, 25-11-2016

Correspondent member of the Lisbon Academy of Sciences (Physics), 2011-.

Correspondent member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences (Chemistry), 2016-.

Special Visiting Researcher scholarship (PVE 313778/2013-2), CNPq, Brazil, Science Without Borders program, 2013.

Prize for Scientific Excellence, Portuguese Science Foundation (FCT), 2004.


Member of the Organizing Committee of 18 international and 5 national conferences.

Member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of 30 international and 3 national conferences.



Science and Technology of Materials, final reports of research projects, FCT, 2008, 2009, 2014-2016, 2019-.

Exact Sciences and Engineering, final reports of strategic research projects, FCT, 2014-2015.

Materials science research projects, FCT, 2005-2009.

Ramón y Cajal e Juan de la Cierva programmes (Materials Science), Agencia Nacional de Evaluación y Prospectiva, Spain, 2009.

Bi-lateral cooperation projects, FCT, 2009.

Ph.D/post-doctoral research grants, FCT, 2005, 2011, 2012 (Materials Science) and 2013 (Nanoscience & Nanotechnology).

Ph.D research grants, FCT, 2017 (Materials Engineering and Nanotechnology); 2019-2021 (chair).

The Research Council for Natural Sciences and Engineering, Academy of Finland, Materials Science Projects (academy projects, research fellow posts and postdoctoral projects), 2013.

Reviewer of CNPq, Brazil (2008 and 2015).

State Natural Science Award of the People's Republic of China (2010).

Agence Nationale de la Recherche ANR, France (2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2021).

U.S. Department of Energy/Office of Basic Energy Sciences (2013).

National Science Centre, Poland (2013-2021).

MIUR - Italian Ministry for Education, University and Research (2012-2017).

Swiss National Science Foundation (2015); Czech Science Foundation (2015).

Paris Sciences et Lettres (PSL) Research University (2015).

University of Milano Bicocca (Innovation Project Grant call), Italy (2016), Italian Research and University Evaluation Agency (ANVUR, 2011-2014, 2016).

Postdoctorate InterTalentum Project of University Autónoma of Madrid (2018).

University of Calabria, post-doctoral positions (2017).

Reviewer of grant application to IUPAC - Inorganic Chemistry Division (2010).

Fundacione Cariplo, Milan, Italy, program Science and Technology Research on Advanced Materials (2013).



Regular reviewer of leading journals in Physics, Chemistry and Materials Science (e.g., Nano Energy, Nano Letters, Nano Today, Nature Catalysis, Nature Chemistry, Nature Communications, Nature Materials, Nature Nanotechnology, Nature Photonics, Nature Protocols, Phys. Rev. B, Adv. Sci., Angew. Chem., Adv. Mater., Adv. Func. Mater., Chem. Mater. and J. Mater. Chem.).

Referee for PhD thesis, 88 times.

Referee for nomination of professors (tenure), 12 times.

Referee of Professorship positions in University of Minho (2007, 2009, 2016); City University of Hong Kong (2008, 2016), University of Aveiro (2009, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019); University of Coimbra (2018-2022); University of Porto (2012, 2017); Universitat Rovira i Virgili (2017); University at Buffalo, The State University of New York (2016); New University of Lisbon (2009); University of Lisbon, IST (2009, 2015); KAU, Saudi Arabia (2013);Honk Kong Baptist University, China (2021); University of Technology Sydney, Austrália (2021); École Normal Superieur Lyon (2022).



Physica B – Condensed Matter (Elsevier) , Editor, 2017-.

Frontiers in Chemistry, Associate Editor, 2013-2015; Chief Editor, 2016-.

Journal of Luminescence (Elsevier), Associate Editor, 2014-.

Journal of Rare Earths (Elsevier), Member of the Editorial Board, 2014-.

Journal of Sol-Gel Science and Technology (Springer), Member of the Editorial Board, 2013-.

Sensors (MDPI), Member of the Section Board of Sensor Materials, 2019-

Journal of Coordination Chemistry (Taylor & Francis), Member of the Editorial Board, 2013-2019.

Results in Optics (Elsevier), Member of the Editorial Board, 2021-

ChemPhotoChem (Wiley-VCH e Chemistry Europe), Member of the Editorial Board, 2021-



Luís António Ferreira Martins Dias Carlos (born in Coimbra, Portugal, in 1964) got his PhD in physics from the University of Évora in 1995 working on photoluminescence of polymer electrolytes incorporating lanthanide salts. In 1996 he joined the Department of Physics at the University of Aveiro as Professor Auxiliar. Currently, he is Full Professor. He is member of the Lisbon Academy of Sciences (Physics section) and Brazilian Academy of Sciences and was visiting professor of S. Paulo State University (UNESP), Araraquara, S.P. Brazil (1999, 2012 and 2013), University of Montpellier 2, France (2008) and University of Wrocław, Poland (2020).


Luís Carlos has been involved I have been involved in the mentoring and supervision of students/researchers at different levels. Namely, 6 foreign professors (BR and Poland, PL) during sabbatical periods; 34 post-doctoral fellows (2 Marie-Curie); 27 Ph.D. students (14 joint degrees with Brazilian (7), French (5) and Spanish (2) universities), 15 M.Sc. and 11 undergraduate students (all grants representing more than 3 M€). I currently supervise 6 PhD and 1 MSc students. In the last 14 years, 8 post-doctoral associates and 21 Ph.D students from 12 different European and American countries carried out research in Aveiro (2–6 months). The mentored students work as professors (29%) or researchers (43%) in Universities & Research Centres worldwide (UK, FR, PRC, and New Zealand) and as permanent staff in private (national/international) companies (21%); 2 of the students got ERC Consolidator Grants (2018 & 2019).


He is co-author of 539 documents published in peer-reviewed international journals with ca. 23650; average 43 citations/paper, 2291citations in 2021, annual average increase around 10% since 2009 (Scopus). These papers were cited by other authors in top journals, including Nat. Energy, Nat. Nanotech., Nat. Photonics, Phys. Rev. Lett., Adv. Sci., Adv. Mater., Chem. Rev., ACS Nano, Nano Lett., Angew. Chem., or Nat. Commun. These publications were published essentially in Q1/Q2 journals (>94% since 2009, 58% in Q1), including 4, 8, and 79 papers published in journals with IF>39 (1 with ca. 1316 citations), >30, and >9, respectively. I have co-authored ca. 600 communications in international meetings (90 plenary/keynote/invited talks) and was invited to give lectures (70) in EU, Brazilian, and Asian institutions. I have also filled 5 patents – e.g., luminescent molecular thermometers based on organic/inorganic matrices (ES2372683, EP 2447689, US 9,557,227 B2). I was the coordinator of 6 EU projects (2 as consortium coordinator, 1 FET-OPEN), 23 projects financed by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT, Portuguese Science Foundation) and 8 bilateral actions (total founding for UAVR>5,5 M€). I participated in 10 European and Brazilian projects and in 20 ones financed by national sources (FCT and regional entities) (total founding >2,5 M€ for UAVR, since 2012).


He created in 2000 in Aveiro, Portugal, the research group on photonic hybrids and nanomaterials (Phantom-G). The group (actually with ca. 20 people) was a pioneer in the study of luminescent nanothermometers and organic-inorganic light-emitting hybrids (namely embedding lanthanide centres). In the last decade, the group has established an international network devoting to these topics with more than 30 research groups in Europe (Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Poland, UK, Nederlands), China, Japan, Brazil, Singapore and Australia. Several PhD students have performed joint thesis abroad, Spain (Instituto de Ciencias de Materiales de Aragón, Zaragoza), France (Institut Charles Gerhardt, Montpellier and Institut de Chimie de la Matière Condensée, Bordeaux) and Brazil (S. Paulo State University). The current scientific interests of the group include nanothermometry, light emission of functional organic-inorganic hybrids, silicates and nanocrystals; applications of hybrid materials in green photonics (solid-state lighting, luminescent solar concentrators and integrated optics), self-assembly and emergence of complexity in organic/inorganic hybrids and luminescent/magnetic nanoparticles as new probes for multimodal imaging.

Contact Information

+351 234 370 946

University of Aveiro, Physics Department, office 13.3.13

by appointment

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