“Chema Gómez-Rodríguez” Young Researchers Awards 2023

  • 11 October, 2023
  • News

Winners of the 2023 “Chema Gómez-Rodríguez” Awards

The winners of the 2023 Edition of the “Chema Gómez-Rodríguez” Young Researchers Awards have been:

First Prize

Juan LUENGO MARQUEZ for the paper: “Force-dependent elasticity of nucleic acids”, Nanoscale 15, 6738 (2023).

This theoretical work proposes a novel fluctuations-based approach to address the mechanical properties of nucleic acids, going beyond a linear theory of Elasticity. The authors are able to extract the dependence of the elastic parameters on the applied stress, which they attribute to microscopic structural changes of the chains. They apply the approach to short double stranded DNA and RNA. They reach clear and well-supported conclusions and predictions that await for experimental test and could have a strong impact in the field. Juan LUENGO MARQUEZ contributed to all parts of the work, developed by himself a toy-model to describe the modification of the twist modulus by the applied force, and wrote the manuscript.


Second Prize

Nuria JIMÉNEZ AREVALO for the paper: “MoS2 Photoelectrodes for Hydrogen Production: Tuning the S‑Vacancy Content in Highly Homogeneous Ultrathin Nanocrystals”, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 15, 33514 (2023).

The authors use salt-assisted CDV to grow 2D-MoS2 nanoflakes and optimize their photo-electrochemical properties. The technique allows to tune the S/Mo ratio and to obtain flakes with a high density of active sites. The authors thoroughly characterized the grown samples and measured the electrocatalytic activity for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Excellent Faradaic efficiency and stability were obtained. The results have potential for important impact in the field of “green hydrogen”. The work of the student is impressive; both by the synthesis of the material and by the number of techniques used to characterize them. She was deeply involved in all aspects of the work.


Objective of the “Chema Gómez-Rodríguez” Awards

The aim is to promote excellent work of the young scientists of the Nicolás Cabrera Institute (INC) by recognizing their contributions in high impact publications.


    “Chema Gómez-Rodríguez” Young Researchers Awards
  • The publication has to include at least one member of the INC, and “Instituto Nicolás Cabrera” must be in the affiliation.
  • Date of the publication must be after 02 November 2022
  • The candidate can be either a PhD student or a young postdoc who has defended his/her PhD after 01 January 2023
  • Two different candidates cannot present the same publication.

First prize

  • 1000 € (after taxes)
  • A certificate
  • Invited talk in the INC Young Researchers Meeting on 15 December 2023.

Second prize

  • 500 € (after taxes)
  • A certificate
  • Invited talk in the INC Young Researchers Meeting on 15 December 2023.

Awards committee

The panel will be the scientific advisory committee of INC.

Award criteria

Relevance and impact of the publication to the state-of-the-art in the field. Significant contribution of the candidate to the published work.


Candidates should complete the form below before 3 November 2023. It includes:

  • One pdf file with the publication to be considered.
  • A brief summary describing the applicant’s contribution to the work, relevance of the work in the field and outlook of the research

Family Name

First Name

Your Email

Co-author(s) member(s) of INC

Date of PhD degree (if applicable)

Upload summary
(pdf format)
Summary of the main results of the contribution, justifying the candidate’s contribution (Maximum 500 words, max. 1Mb)

Upload publication (max. 10Mb)
(pdf format)