News from the Physics Department
Precise monitoring of the lung
2020-01-31 – Scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have presented a combination of imaging techniques that allow real-time monitoring of the delivery of inhaled drugs within the lungs of mice and their absorption in the lung tissue. The results are intended to guide the development of high-efficacy drugs with fewer side effects for treating human lung diseases. The Munich Compact Light Source (MuCLS), a unique, compact particle accelerator that generates high-brilliance X-rays, was used to make the measurements. The researchers reported their results in the journal SMALL.
Franz Pfeiffer recieves German Röntgen medal 2018
2018-05-07 – Am 21. April erhielt Prof. Franz Pfeiffer vom Physik-Department der TUM die Röntgenplakette der Stadt Remscheid. Gewürdigt werden damit seine herausragenden Forschungen zu bildgebenden Methoden mit Röntgenstrahlen. “Pfeiffer legte mit seinen Arbeiten den Grundstein für die breite Anwendung in Medizin und Industrie”.
Histology in 3D
2018-02-22 – To date, examining patient tissue samples has meant cutting them into thin slices for histological analysis. This might now be set to change – thanks to a new staining method devised by an interdisciplinary team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM). This allows specialists to investigate three-dimensional tissue samples using the Nano-CT system also recently developed at TUM.
Nano-CT device successfully tested
2017-11-07 – Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
95th birthday of Professor Haruhiko Morinaga
2017-10-10 – Haruhiko Morinaga leitete von 1968 bis 1991 den damaligen Lehrstuhl für Kernphysik am Physik-Department der TUM. Jetzt feiert er seinen 95. Geburtstag.
Leibniz Prize winner Franz Pfeiffer heads Munich School of BioEngineering
2017-03-31 – Two years after its founding at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the Munich School of BioEngineering (MSB) is expanding its scope of action: The upcoming opening of the MSB-associated Central Institute for Translational Cancer Research (TranslaTUM) will give physicists, engineers and physicians a shared new laboratory building for transdisciplinary research in the midst of the TUM’s Klinikum rechts der Isar in Munich. In addition, a new structure for the Bavarian Nuclear Resonance Center (Bayerisches Kernresonanz-Zentrum) will soon open on the Garching campus. The new building for protein research, expected to be finished in two years and also located in Garching, completes the most topically diverse bio-engineering structure in all of Europe. The new construction represents an investment of more than 135 million Euros, half of which is being financed by the German Federal Government. Leibniz Prize winner Prof. Franz Pfeiffer (44) will succeed the founding director Prof. Axel Haase as of April 1, 2017.
Unlocking the secrets of the Achilles’ heel
2017-02-28 – Walking, running, sprinting – every movement of the foot stretches the Achilles’ tendon. When jumping, the loads can approach ten times the body weight. Amazingly, the connection between the heel bone and Achilles’ tendon withstands theses tremendous loads. A team of doctors, physicists, chemists and engineers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has now discovered why.
Miniature particle accelerator saves on contrast agents
2017-02-27 – The most prevalent method for obtaining images of clogged coronary vessels is coronary angiography. For some patients, however, the contrast agents used in this process can cause health problems. A team at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has now demonstrated that the required quantity of these substances can be significantly reduced if monoenergetic X-rays from a miniature particle accelerator are used.
New X-ray method uses scattering to visualize nanostructures
2015-11-19 – Both in materials science and in biomedical research it is important to be able to view minute nanostructures, for example in carbon-fiber materials and bones. A team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the University of Lund, the Charité hospital in Berlin and the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) have now developed a new computed tomography method based on the scattering, rather than on the absorption, of X-rays. The technique makes it possible for the first time to visualize nanostructures in objects measuring just a few millimeters, allowing the researchers to view the precise three-dimensional structure of collagen fibers in a piece of human tooth.
New state-of-the-art compact X-ray source
2015-10-29 – For some years now it has been possible to generate high-brilliance X-rays using ring-shaped particle accelerators (synchrotron sources). However, such installations are several hundred meters in diameter and cost billions of euros. The world’s first mini synchrotron was inaugurated today at Technical University of Munich (TUM). It can generate high-brilliance X-rays on a footprint measuring just 5 x 3 meters. The new unit will be used chiefly to research biomedical questions relating to cancer, osteoporosis, pulmonary diseases and arteriosclerosis.
Ultra short laser pulses generate mini X-ray source for 3D imaging of soft tissue
2015-08-26 – Researchers of the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU) have developed a miniature X-ray source with laser light. They used this light-generated radiation in combination with phase-contrast X-ray tomography and captured three-dimensional images of ultrafine details of a fly measuring just a few millimeters. Until now, such radiation could only be produced in expensive ring accelerators measuring several kilometers in diameter. The newly developed instruments only require a university laboratory.
Novel X-ray technology improves contrast in soft tissue
2015-04-30 – Soft tissue disorders like tumors are very difficult to recognize using normal X-ray machines. There is hardly any distinction between healthy tissue and tumors. Researchers at the Physik-Department of TUM have now developed a technology using a compact synchrotron source that measures not only X-ray absorption, but also phase shifts and scattering. Tissue that is hardly recognizable using traditional X-ray machines is now visible.
3-D-Aufnahmen von Körpergewebe: Neue Röntgentechnik mit höherer Schärfe und reduzierter Strahlendosis
2012-06-12 – Wissenschaftler haben eine neue Röntgentechnik entwickelt, die den Kontrast von Computertomographen (CT) drastisch verbessert und zugleich die während der Aufnahme freigesetzte Strahlendosis reduziert (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences). Die Methode basiert auf einer neuartigen Kombination der Gitter-Interferometrie, die sich durch hohen Kontrast auszeichnet, mit der Computertomographie, die dreidimensionale Röntgenaufnahmen erzeugt. Die Technik kann auch im Krankenhaus eingesetzt werden, wo sich Röntgen-Quelle und Detektor während eines Scans kontinuierlich um den Patienten drehen müssen.