Camilla Costa graduated in Chemstry with honors in Genoa in 1985 and obtained her PhD in Chemical Sciences in 1989 (from the Inter-University Consortium Turin-Genoa-Pavia), together with a two-year postdoctoral fellowship. Since 1994 she is a university researcher at the Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry of the University of Genoa.
The initial stages of her research activity, carried out within several programs funded by MIUR (Ministry of Education, Universities and Research) and in collaboration with other Italian research groups, focused on the study of intermolecular interactions and combined two main lines of investigation:
- theoretical study of atomic and molecular interactions, both at short/medium distances, where the quantum exchange effects prevail, and at long distances (Van der Waals interactions), where the binding energy can be expressed in terms of electrical properties of the individual interacting molecules;
- theoretical study of macromolecular interactions, with the construction of phase diagrams for binary and ternary mixtures of rigid and/or flexible polymers, with or without a solvent.
Recently her research activity aims also at the study of interfacial phenomena, with particular emphasis on membrane separation processes; the last five years were devoted to the design, synthesis and characterization of membranes possessing controlled properties, suitable for applications both in conventional separation processes and in ones based on novel technologies. Her study especially focuses on the development of processes having low environmental impact and lower energy consumption, and in particular on the optimization of membrane contactors for the gas purification and the CO2 capture.
She has been taking an active part in many Italian and European research projects. She is the principal investigator of several research projects and collaboration agreements with various institutions and companies.
Her scientific activity is witnessed by about 60 published papers on international journals and by participation to numerous national and international congresses with oral and poster communications. She collaborates as a referee with several international scientific journals, among which Chemical Engineering Journal, Chemical Engineering & Technology, Journal of CO2 utilization.
Her teaching activity initially looked at the area of industrial chemical processes. Since 2005 she holds the classes “Colloids and interfaces” and “Clean chemical processes and technologies” for the bachelor degree in Chemistry and Chemical Technologies.