Prof. Monica Santamaria graduated (Laurea cum laude) in Chemical Engineering at Università di Palermo in 1997 and she got the PhD degree in Electrochemical Engineering at Politecnico di Milano in 2001. During her PhD studies she spent a semester working in the Corrosion and Protection Centre at UMIST (Manchester - UK) under the supervision of Prof. G. E. Thompson.
She worked as post-doc researcher at Chemical Engineering Department of Università di Palermo on the formation and characterization of Chromate Conversion Coatings on Al substrates. She was appointed Assistant Professor in 2002 and since November 2010 she is Full Professor of Applied Physical Chemistry at Università di Palermo, where she teaches “Chemistry” for undergraduate students, "Electrochemical Energy Conversion and Storage" and “Materials Durability” for master students.
Her research interests are mainly focused on mechanism of growth and breakdown of anodic oxide films on valve-metals and valve-metals alloys, on 1) characterization of corrosion layers and passive films by Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy and Photocurrent Spectroscopy (PCS); 2) study of electronic properties of amorphous and crystalline semiconductors by PCS and differential admittance technique; 3) preparation and functionalization of anodic alumina membranes for thin film fuel cells; 4) preparation of biocompatible membranes for thin film fuel cell; 5) electrochemical growth of nanostructures by template assisted method or by anodizing; 6) photoelectrochemical fabrication of hybrid inorganic/organic (conducting polymers) junctions for electronic applications.
She has been invited to present oral communications and keynote lectures in international scientific meetings, and to give tutorials lectures at foreign research Institutions, such as University POLITEHNICA of Bucharest (Romania) and Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Bochum (Germany). She is author of 3 international patents, 3 book chapters and 60 papers in peer-reviewed international journals. The success of these researches resulted in the "Hans-Jürgen Engell Prize 2006" awarded by the International Society of Electrochemistry in July 2006.
In 2012 she was coordinator of the organizing committee of the symposium “Corrosion Science and Engineering” for the 63rd annual meeting of International Society of Electrochemistry (Prague), and she is currently member of the organizing committees of the symposium “Corrosion, Passivity and Oxide Films” for the 65th annual meeting of International Society of Electrochemistry to be held in September 2013 in Lausanne (Switzerland), and of the 17th Topical Meeting of the International Society of Electrochemistry, “Multi-scaled Analysis of Electrochemical Systems” to be held in Saint Malo’ (France) in 2015.
She is active member of the following scientific societies: International Society of Electrochemistry, Electrochemical Society, Società Chimica Italiana.