News from the Physics Department
Unexpected findings on the production of elements
2015-01-27 – Elements of cosmic origin on the floor of the Pacific Ocean provide new insights into supernova explosions. An international research team with participation of the Physics Department at Technische Universität München has analysed a deep-sea manganese crust on their content of particularly heavy elements thought to be from supernovae. It was found that the amount is much lower than expected. The researchers therefore assume that the heavy elements found may not be formed in standard supernovae.
Franz Pfeiffer appointed as Carl von Linde Senior Fellows at IAS
2015-01-23 – TUM's Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) awards one of its Carl von Linde Senior Fellowships to Professor Franz Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer will use the Fellowship to develop a novel prototype for X-ray computed tomography (CT): the up-scaling of recent advances in dark-field X-ray imaging from in-vivo studies on small animals to first clinical studies for human diagnostics. The novel techniques promise X-ray tomography with unprecedented detail and thus may greatly enhance early detection and screening of important diseases, including lung emphysema or cancer.
Electrons on a rapid journey through a crystal lattice
2015-01-14 – How fast do electrons whiz through the atomic layers of a crystal lattice? A team of scientists led by researchers from the Technische Universität München (TUM) joined by colleagues from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ), the Ludwig- Maximilians-Universität Munich and the Technical University of Vienna has now investigatigated this fundamental question. The researchers measured the time electrons needed to travel through a film consisting of a few layers a of magnesium atoms.
How long do antiparticles live in gummy bears?
2015-01-07 – Gelatin is used in the pharmaceutical industry to encapsulate active agents. It protects against oxidation and overly quick release. Tiny pores in the material have a significant influence on this, yet they are difficult to investigate. In experiments on gummy bears, researchers at Physik-Department of TUM have now transferred a methodology to determine the free volume of gelatin preparations.
Borexino results among top-10 breakthroughs of the year
2014-12-19 – The magazine “Physics World” has named the Borexino results on neutrinos from the sun as one of the ten breakthroughs of the year 2014 in physics. The Borexino collaboration has for the first time detected neutrinos from the main nuclear reaction that powers the sun. The experiment is installed at the Italian Gran Sasso underground laboratory with a large involment of physicists from the Physik-Department at Technische Universität München (TUM). One of its co-initiators is TUM professor emeritus Franz von Feilitzsch.
Gaede Prize 2015 for Dr. Wilhelm Auwärter
2014-12-11 – The "Deutsche Vakuumgesellschaft" awards physicist from TUM.
Biophysicist Hendrik Dietz (36) awarded top German research award
2014-12-10 – Prof. Dr. Hendrik Dietz from the Technische Universität München (TUM) has been awarded the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation). The 36-year-old biophysicist is thus the recipient of Germany’s most prestigious research award, which is endowed with 2.5 million euros. Hendrik Dietz is being honored for his internationally-renowned work in the field of bionanotechnology. His research into the mechanical and structural properties of proteins has opened up completely new horizons for the development of DNA-based “nanomachines”.
Possible Read Head for Quantum Computers: Graphene layer reads optical information from nanodiamonds electronically
2014-12-01 – Nitrogen-vacancy centers in diamonds could be used to construct vital components for quantum computers. But hitherto it has been impossible to read optically written information from such systems electronically. Using a graphene layer, a team of scientists headed by Professor Alexander Holleitner of the Physics Department has now implemented just such a read unit.
Ultra-short X-ray Pulses Explore the Nano World: Characterization of X-ray flashes open new perspectives in X-ray science
2014-11-26 – Ultra-short and extremely strong X-ray flashes, as produced by free-electron lasers, are opening the door to a hitherto unknown world. Scientists are using these flashes to take “snapshots” of the geometry of tiniest structures, for example the arrangement of atoms in molecules. To improve not only spatial but also temporal resolution further requires knowledge about the precise duration and intensity of the X-ray flashes. An international team of scientists has now tackled this challenge.
Wolfram-Prandl-Prize for Marc Janoschek
2014-09-23 – On 23 September 2014 Dr. Marc Janoschek has received the Wolfram-Prandl-Prize 2014 of the "Komitee für Forschung mit Neutronen" during the "German Conference for Research with Synchrotron Radiation, Neutrons and Ion Beams at Large Facilities". The prize is awarded every two years to outstanding young scientists and includes a cash prize of 2500 €.
Reopening of the Branch Library Physics
2014-09-19 – Ab heute, Freitag den 19. September 2014 ist die Teilbibliothek Physik wieder am alten Standort geöffnet. Die neuen Öffnungszeiten sind: Mo -- Fr, 9.00 -- 24.00 Uhr.
Movable cytoskeleton membrane fabricated for first time
2014-09-04 – Using only a few ingredients, the biophysicist Prof. Andreas Bausch and his team at the Physik-Department of TUM have successfully implemented a minimalistic model of the cell that can change its shape and move on its own. They describe how they turned this goal into reality in the current edition of the academic journal Science, where their research is featured as cover story.
Researchers observe the phenomenon of “lithium plating”
2014-09-03 – Lithium-ion batteries are seen as a solution for energy storage of the future and have become indispensible, especially in electromobility. Their key advantage is that they are able to store large amounts of energy but are still comparatively light and compact.
Physicists observe the creation of solar energy for the first time ever
2014-09-01 – For the first time in the history of solar research, scientists have successfully measured solar energy at the instant of creation inside the sun. In the Gran Sasso underground laboratory, physicists of the Borexino Collaboration are for the first time ever directly observing the neutrinos created during the fusion of two hydrogen nuclei and the resultant production of heavy hydrogen. The researchers, including physicists from the Physik-Department of TUM, are presenting their results in the current issue of "Nature".
Chemical reaction yields "tapes" of porphin molecules
2014-08-15 – Dr. Wilhelm Auwärter and his team are working on a research project to develop tiny flat molecule tapes at the Department of Physics of Technische Universität München (TUM). These structures could find versatile applications. Via direct coupling on a silver surface, the scientists successfully formed dimers and short chains of porphine molecules without contaminating by-products.
Artificial retina: Physicists develop an interface to the optical nerve
2014-08-08 – Physicists at the Physik-Department (TUM) are using the special properties of graphene to produce key elements of an artificial retina. With their research program the researchers were admitted to the heavily funded "Graphene" Flagship Program of the EU.