News: Centre: Physics Centre related to Chalmers University of TechnologyTue, 22 May 2018 13:48:22 +0200 Claeson appointed to jubilee doctor<p><b>​Tord Claeson, well-known professor at the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience –​ MC2, defended his thesis for a doctoral degree of technology in 1967. On 2 June, he is promoted to jubilee doctor at the solemn Doctoral Conferment Ceremony in the Concert Hall in Göteborg. &quot;I&#39;ve been looking forward to this for 50 years,&quot; he says jokingly.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">Jubilee doctor is at title earned by individuals who received their doctoral degrees fifty years earlier at the same university. Tord Claeson is alone to be honored in this way in 2018.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>He became civil engineer in the field of engineering physics in 1963, and continued his academic career by defending his thesis in 1967, resumed by assignments as researcher at both Chalmers and Gothenburg University. In 1982, Tord Claeson was appointed to professor of physics at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Over the years, he has also been a guest researcher at the University of California and Stanford University in the United States, and has stayed for longer periods in Japan and Korea.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Tord Claeson's research has included basic condensed matter physics as well as different applications, primarily hypersensitive sensors based on superconducting tunnel effects. He has also been deeply engaged in the field of high-temperature superconductivity, regularly used the <span style="background-color:initial">synchrotron radiation facility at Stanford, and advocated facilities for nanostructures at Chalmers.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>He is a member of the Royal Society of Arts and Sciences in Gothenburg (KVVS), the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA), the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (KVA) and the Korean and Flemish science academies. He has also been a member of the Nobel Committee for Physics, and has received several awards, including the Jacob Wallenberg Prize, the IVA Gold Medal, and the Celsius and Chalmers Medals.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Tord Claeson is one of the legendary MC2 pioneers and has been a part of the department ever since it was founded in the year 2000. Many are the PhD students who have had him as supervisor over the years. Tord Claeson has fostered many of today's leaders <span style="background-color:initial"> </span><span style="background-color:initial;font-size:11pt;line-height:16.8667px;font-family:calibri, sans-serif">–</span><span style="background-color:initial"> both those who have stayed in different positions at MC2, and those who have undertaken leading challenges in Sweden and abroad.</span></div> <span></span><div></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Tord Claeson was born in Varberg in 1938. In November he turns 80 years old.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text: Michael Nystås and the Communications and Marketing department</div> <div>Photo: Susannah Carlsson</div> <div><br /></div> <div><a>Read more about the Doctoral Conferment Ceremony</a> &gt;&gt;&gt;</div>Mon, 21 May 2018 10:00:00 +0200 of physics awarded by the City of Gothenburg<p><b>​Professor Per-Olof Nilsson at the Department of Physics at Chalmers University of Technology is well-known for his skills in communicating science to the public in an accessible, creative and passionate way.</b></p>Through the years, he has inspired thousands and thousands of students of all ages. With his popular Physics toys, crowded science cafés and many other activities he has spread his enthusiasm for physics and natural sciences to the public. Now, he has been awarded a badge of merit by the City of Gothenburg. (Göteborgs stads förtjänsttecken).<p></p> <p></p> <img class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/350x305/po-nilssonflytandekvave350x305.jpg" width="208" height="180" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><span style="display:inline-block">&quot;</span>This really shows how important it is to communicate science to the public. Most of all I’m happy on behalf of Chalmers because public understanding of science is crucial in our society,” says Per-Olof “P-O” Nilsson.<p></p> <p></p> The motivation for the award from the City of Gothenburg will be announced in connection with the award ceremony on 4 June.<p></p> <p></p> The reconstruction work of the new locations for Per-Olof Nilsson’s Physics toys at the Gothenburg Physics Centre has recently begun.<p></p> <p></p> “I’m really looking forward to a new start and I hope that we can soon invite lots of young people to explore physics with us again”, says P-O Nilsson.<p></p> <p></p> Besides <a href="">Per-Olof Nilsson</a>, Chalmers Professor <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Ann-Sofie-Sandberg.aspx">Ann-Sofie Sandberg </a>has also been awarded the badge of merit by the City of Gothenburg. <a href="/en/departments/bio/news/Pages/Gothenburg-award-to-Ann-Sofie-Sandberg.aspx">Read an article about her.   </a><span><span><span style="display:inline-block"><span style="display:inline-block"><br /></span></span></span></span><p></p> <p><strong>Text</strong>: Mia Halleröd Palmgren, <a href=""></a></p> <p><br /></p> <p></p> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">More about Professor Per-Olof &quot;P-O&quot; Nilsson</h5> <div><span><span></span></span></div> <p></p> <p><span><span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span></span><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Watch</a><span> a short video clip when he demonstrates the “Finnish rocket.”</span><br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Watch a news feature about P-O Nilsson when he was awarded the prize from “Längmanska Kulturfonden” in 2015. The film was recorded at the old location for the Physics toys. </a><br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Read more about the plans for ”Fysiklek” at Gothenburg Physics centre.</a><br /></p>Mon, 14 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 the nature of dark matter<p><b>​Dark matter is one of the great mysteries of the universe. It is highly abundant, yet nobody knows what it is. But now, scientific instruments have become sensitive enough that soon, researchers will be able to detect the leading dark matter candidate – that is, if it exists.</b></p><div><span><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Riccardo_Catena_IMG_0222270x170.jpg" width="256" height="162" alt="" style="margin:5px" /></span>For every star, galaxy and dust cloud we can see in space, there are five times more invisible, so-called dark matter.</div> <p></p> <div><div>&quot;We do not know what dark matter is, but without it we cannot explain how the universe evolved into what we see today. Dark matter is one of the pillars of modern cosmology”, says Riccardo Catena, researcher at the Division of Subatomic and Plasma Physics at Chalmers University of Technology.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Hints of invisible matter</h2></div> <p></p> <div>As early as the 1930s, the Swiss astrophysicist Fritz Zwicky noted that galaxies in nearby galaxy clusters moved faster than could be explained by the gravity of just visible matter. He therefore suggested the existence of invisible matter. But the idea did not get much attention.</div> <p></p> <div>However, when the American astronomer Vera Rubin studied the rotation of galaxies in the 1970s, she discovered the same thing – the velocities of the stars were too great to be explained by visible matter alone. Now, the science community began to take the idea of dark matter seriously.</div> <p></p> <div>Dark matter has also been shown to be indispensable to the formation of the structure of the universe.</div> <p></p> <div>“In the early universe, the gravitational force, which pulls matter together, and radiation, which draws matter apart, struggled against each other. In order for galaxies and galaxy clusters to form as quickly as they did, a dark component that is not affected by radiation is needed”, explains Catena.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">An unknown particle</h2> <p></p> <div>Most of the evidence indicates that dark matter consists of some type of particles – particles that neither absorb nor emit light, or other radiation, are stable for billions of years and move at a significantly lower speed than light.</div> <p></p> <div>No known particle matches these criteria. Therefore, scientists are looking for a new particle. The most popular hypothesis is that it is a particle about as heavy as an atomic nucleus and which interacts weakly with common matter, a so-called weakly-interacting massive particle, or WIMP.</div> <p></p> <div><div>If the hypothesis is correct, the earth passes through clouds of WIMPs all the time. Most of them pass unaffected right through the earth, but in theory, some of them should happen to hit the nucleus of an atom in a detector. If so, there is a chance to detect it.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Weak signals to interpret</h2></div> <p></p> <div>But the signals are extremely weak. One of the leading experiments, Xenon1T, is located in Italy under a mountain to shield its huge detector from disturbances such as cosmic rays.</div> <p></p> <div>&quot;The experiments are becoming increasingly sensitive. If WIMPs exist, we should find them within ten years”, says Catena.</div> <p></p> <div>He himself is a theorist and calculates what the signature signals from WIMPs would look like, in order for those running the experiments to know what to search for.</div> <p></p> <div>“I also design strategies for how to interpret the measurements, so that we can learn as much as possible about the WIMPs once they are found.”</div> <p></p> <div>In June he will arrange a conference for both experimentalists and theorists in dark matter research. Several prestigious speakers have already accepted invitations.</div> <p></p> <div>“The detection of WIMPs may come at any moment in the coming years. We must be prepared to interpret a discovery with optimal strategies, in order to learn as much about them as possible”, says Riccardo Catena.</div> <p></p> <div>Text: Ingela Roos, <a href=""></a></div> <p></p> <div> <a href="/en/departments/physics/calendar/Pages/Workshop-on-dark-matter.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />The workshop &quot;Preparing for dark matter particle discovery&quot; will be held at Chalmers from the 11th to the 15th June 2018.</a><br /><a href="/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/Joint-efforts-to-reveal-the-darkest-secret.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Read an earlier article: Joint efforts to reveal the darkest secret in the Universe </a><br /></div>Fri, 04 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 in the universe can now be studied on earth<p><b>Solar flares, cosmic radiation, and the northern lights are well-known phenomena. But exactly how their enormous energy arises is not as well understood. Now, physicists at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, have discovered a new way to study these spectacular space plasma phenomena in a laboratory environment. The results have been published in the renowned journal Nature Communications.</b></p><div><span><span><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/LongqingYi_170327_01_beskuren_270x.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span></span>“Scientists have been trying to bring these space phenomena down to earth for a decade. With our new method we can enter a new era, and investigate what was previously impossible to study. It will tell us more about how these events occur,” says Longqing Yi, researcher at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.<p></p> <p>The research concerns so-called ‘magnetic reconnection’ – the process which gives rise to these phenomena. Magnetic reconnection causes sudden conversion of energy stored in the magnetic field into heat and kinetic energy. This happens when two plasmas with anti-parallel magnetic fields are pushed together, and the magnetic field lines converge and reconnect. This interaction leads to violently accelerated plasma particles that can sometimes be seen with the naked eye – for example, during the northern lights.</p> <p>Magnetic reconnection in space can also influence us on earth. The creation of solar flares can interfere with communications satellites, and thus affect power grids, air traffic and telephony.</p> <p>In order to imitate and study these spectacular space plasma phenomena in the laboratory, you need a high-power laser, to create magnetic fields around a million times stronger than those found on the surface of the sun. In the new scientific article, Longqing Yi, along with Professor Tünde Fülöp from the Department of Physics, proposed an experiment in which magnetic reconnection can be studied in a new, more precise way. Through the use of 'grazing incidence' of ultra-short laser pulses, the effect can be achieved without overheating the plasma. The process can thus be studied very cleanly, without the laser directly affecting the internal energy of the plasma. The proposed experiment would therefore allow us to seek answers to some of the most fundamental questions in astrophysics.<span><span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span></span></p> <p>“<span><span><span><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Tunde270x.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /></span></span></span>We hope that this can inspire many research groups to use our results. This is a great opportunity to look for knowledge that could be useful in a number of areas. For example, we need to better understand solar flares, which can interfere with important communication systems. We also need to be able to control the instabilities caused by magnetic reconnection in fusion devices,” says Tünde Fülöp.</p> <p>The study on which the new results are based was financed by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg foundation, through the framework of the project ‘Plasma-based Compact Ion Sources’, and the ERC project ‘<span>Running away and radiating<span style="display:inline-block"></span></span>'.</p> <p>Text: Mia Halleröd Palmgren, <a href=""></a></p></div> <div>Translation: Joshua Worth, <a href=""></a></div> <div>Portrait pictures: Peter Widing (Tünde Fülöp) and Mia Halleröd Palmgren (Longqing Yi) <span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/reconnection_LongqingYi750x340.jpg" height="340" width="750" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><strong>A new way of studying magnetic reconnection. </strong>The picture shows the experiment setup. The laser (the red triangle on the right) hits the micro-scale film (the grey slab), which splits the beam like a knife. Electrons accelerate on both sides of the ‘knife’ and produce strong currents, along with extremely strong, anti-parallel magnetic fields. Magnetic reconnection occurs beyond the end of the film (the blue frame). The magnetic field is illustrated with black arrows. The boomerang-like structures illustrate the electrons in the different stages of the simulation. The rainbow colours represent the electron transverse momenta.</div> <div>Illustration: Longqing Yi</div> <div> <div>The scientific article was published in the journal Nature Communications.</div> <div><a href="">'Relativistic magnetic reconnection driven by a laser interacting with a micro-scale plasma slab'</a></div></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">More Information:</h5> <strong><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Tünde-Fülöp.aspx">Tünde Fülöp,</a></strong> <span>Professor, <span style="display:inline-block"></span></span>Department of Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 72 986 74 40, <a href=""></a><div><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Longqing-Yi.aspx"><strong>Longqing Yi</strong></a>, Postdoctoral researcher,Department of Physics,Chalmers University of Technology,+46 31 772 68 82, <a href=""></a><br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Read the press release and download high-resolution images. </a><br /></div> Wed, 02 May 2018 07:00:00 +0200's-lectures-.aspx's-lectures-.aspxPopular Physics Day&#39;s lectures<p><b>​The annual Gothenburg Physics Centre event &quot;Fysikens dag&quot; (Physics Day) at the International Science Festival in Gothenburg attracted many curious physics lovers of all ages to listen to interesting lectures in Gustaf Dalén lecture hall on 21 April.</b></p>It<span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Fysikensdag1.jpg" alt="Fysikens dag 2018" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" width="341" height="164" style="margin:5px" /><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span> was probably a record attendance and<a href="/en/centres/gpc/calendar/Pages/Fysikens-dag-2018.aspx"> the event </a>attracted more young people than usual. Many thanks to all visitors and to our inspiring lecturers Ulf Gran, Cecilia Fager, <span>Daniel Midtvedt,<span style="display:inline-block"></span></span> Dag Hanstorp and Tatsiana Lobovkina.<p></p> <p></p> We also thank Fredrik Höök and Christian Forssén who hosted the day. Christian Forssén was also the highly appreciated &quot;secret Einstein lecturer&quot; this year. <br />His talk about artificial intelligence inspired some young students to bring up questions, perspectives and ideas of their own. <br /><br />You can now watch some of the lectures (in Swedish) on Youtube. <br /><a href=";"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Learn about gravitational waves and black holes (Professor Ulf Gran) and have a look into the world of atoms and molecules (PhD Student Cecilia Fager). </a><br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />You can also watch the Einstein lecture about artificial intelligence (Professor Christian Forssén).  </a><br />Wed, 02 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Kläppevik and Johan Bremer awarded for best master&#39;s theses<p><b>​Ida Kläppevik and Johan Bremer have been awarded with the Microwave Road Scholarship for best master&#39;s thesis 2017, in the area of antenna and microwave engineering.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">Ida Kläppevik gets the award of 10 000 SEK and a diploma for her thesis “Analysis, construction and evaluation of radial power divider/combiner”. Johan Bremer is awarded for his thesis “Compensation of thermal effects by dynamic bias in low noise amplifiers”. The winners got their scholarships at the Microwave Road seminar on Space and Satellite on 25 April, handed over to them by Johan Carlert, chairman of Microwave Road.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Microwave Road is a national cluster focusing on international technology and market development uniting industry, universities, research institutes and regional and national public authorities.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div>Read Ida Kläppevik's thesis &gt;&gt;&gt;</div> <div></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Read Johan Bremer's thesis &gt;&gt;&gt;</div> <div></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Read more about the scholarship &gt;&gt;&gt;</div> <div></div></div>Fri, 27 Apr 2018 09:00:00 +0200 time for trombones and airplanes<p><b>​Göran Alestig, research engineer at the Nanofabrication Laboratory at MC2, leaves Chalmers after 16 years. Now he gets more time to grow his big interests – the music and the aviation –​ and maybe find some brand new. &quot;It feels unexpected not to come here anymore. At the same time, it will be exciting to see what to find afterwards,&quot; says the new retiree.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">Göran Alestig is basically a chalmerist. He studied as a MSc in Engineering Physics, graduated in 1977, and became a PhD at Chalmers in 1986 with the dissertation &quot;Some studies related to laser annealing of ion implanted silicon&quot;. He was born and raised in Karlstad. After the dissertation, Göran Alestig worked at ABB Hafo in Järfälla. The work area was mainly process development and CMOS processes.</span><br /></div> <div>&quot;When the company was closed down and parts of the business moved to England, I followed and worked there for three years. Then I thought it was time to move to Sweden again. I was looking for a job and found this lab just finished. It was very good,&quot; says Göran Alestig.</div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">Very mixed role</h5> <div>In 2002 he returned to Chalmers and began his service at the newly established Nanofabrication Laboratory.</div> <div>&quot;The lab was almost ready and most of it was in place. However, I was not involved during the intensive construction stage or when equipment was installed. Everything was very new back then.&quot;</div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/galestig_665x330.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><br /><span style="background-color:initial">He describes his role on MC2 as very mixed. He has served as the business community's entrance to the clean room. Potential business users have called or e-mailed Göran with questions about getting into the lab and use machines and instruments.</span><br /></div> <div>&quot;Usually they tell you what they want to do and ask if it's possible. For example, do we have a certain equipment or process? Then I check it up and gets back to them. We may not always be able to help in just the way they wanted, but can suggest another solution and an approximate amount of time and cost.&quot;</div> <div>&quot;We have companies that work in the lab themselves, mainly those that continue year after year, and also orders that go straight in here without their own staff doing anything in the lab. It has been an interesting and very diverse mix of companies and assignments over the years,&quot; he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">Most rewarding to help researchers</h5> <div>Göran has also been responsible for all offers and invoices to companies. In addition to this, he, like everyone in the lab group, spent a lot of time in the cleanroom and performed service and repairs, trained new users on the equipment, and helped when needed to run or develop recipes and programs in the machines.</div> <div>&quot;Most rewarding has been to help the researchers in the lab to move on with what they are doing, help them to work in different equipment, and make sure they can interpret their results with the aid of measuring equipment. I have always received very good appreciation and feedback when I succeeded in getting something done, getting fixed something that was annoying and understand what is happening together,&quot; says Göran Alestig.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Research engineer Martin Hollertz will succeed as new contact for companies. When Göran now leaves, he wants to ensure that the transition goes as smooth as possible. He is also happy for all the positive feedback companies give him:</div> <div>&quot;The lab gets very much praise, the companies think it worked well and it is fun to hear.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">What will you miss the most?</h5> <div>&quot;Both the people I have worked with and the advanced technical environment. It's easy to get home blind when you go inside and work, but it's a very advanced lab with very exciting technology. That's how it is. Even if you can come back and visit, it will not be the same.&quot;</div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/galestig_665x330b.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><br /><span style="background-color:initial">In May, Göran Alestig turns 65 years. He made his last working day on 26 April and was thanked by cake and presents. Staying at 67 was never an option:</span><br /></div> <div>&quot;I think you should go when you have the opportunity and hopefully have a number of pretty healthy years left. It's unwise not to take advantage of that opportunity,&quot; he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">Music and aviation big interests</h5> <div>For many years he has lived in an apartment in Göteborg. He has never had a family of his own, but he has a large circle of friends he meets - not least in music and aviation.</div> <div>&quot;I have been active for a long time in aviation clubs, both in Säve and recently in Borås. I have also worked for a long time flight instruction in Borås. I have taught a little and it has also been fun, so I will continue.&quot;</div> <div>His own aircraft was sold a few years ago. Now he has access to planes via the club. However, he does not fly as much as before.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Music is another great interest. Göran plays trombone in three different orchestras; two big bands, The Orchestra Big Band and Frölunda Storband, and Mölndal's Symphonic Band. In two of them, the well-known MC2 professor Herbert Zirath also plays.</div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">Do you have any other future plans?</h5> <div>&quot;I want to grow the interests I have and spend more time on them. Maybe it will be a bit of traveling too,&quot; concludes Göran Alestig.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text and photo: Michael Nystås​</div> Thu, 26 Apr 2018 09:00:00 +0200 of graphene can kill bacteria on implants<p><b>​A tiny layer of graphene flakes becomes a deadly weapon and kills bacteria, stopping infections during procedures such as implant surgery. This is the findings of new research from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently published in the scientific journal Advanced Materials Interfaces.</b></p><p>​Operations for surgical implants, such as hip and knee replacements or dental implants, have increased in recent years. However, in such procedures, there is always a risk of bacterial infection. In the worst case scenario, this can cause the implant to not attach to the skeleton, meaning it must be removed.<br /><br />Bacteria travel around in fluids, such as blood, looking for a surface to cling on to. Once in place, they start to grow and propagate, forming a protective layer, known as a biofilm.<br /><br />A research team at Chalmers has now shown that a layer of vertical graphene flakes forms a protective surface that makes it impossible for bacteria to attach. Instead, bacteria are sliced apart by the sharp graphene flakes and killed. Coating implants with a layer of graphene flakes can therefore help protect the patient against infection, eliminate the need for antibiotic treatment, and reduce the risk of implant rejection. The osseointegration – the process by which the bone structure grow to attach the implant – is not disturbed. In fact, the graphene has been shown to benefit the bone cells.<br /><br />Chalmers is a leader in the area of graphene research, but the biological applications did not begin to materialise until a few years ago. The researchers saw conflicting results in earlier studies. Some showed that graphene damaged the bacteria, others that they were not affected.<br /><br />“We discovered that the key parameter is to orient the graphene vertically. If it is horizontal, the bacteria are not harmed,” says Ivan Mijakovic, Professor at the Department of Biology and Biological Engineering.<br /><br />The sharp flakes do not damage human cells. The reason is simple: one bacterium is one micrometer – one thousandth of a millimeter – in diameter, while a human cell is 25 micrometers. So, what constitutes a deadly knife attack for a bacterium, is therefore only a tiny scratch for a human cell.<br /><br />&quot;Graphene has high potential for health applications. But more research is needed before we can claim it is entirely safe. Among other things, we know that graphene does not degrade easily,” says Jie Sun, Associate Professor at the Department of Micro Technology and Nanoscience.<br /><br />Good bacteria are also killed by the graphene. But that’s not a problem, as the effect is localised and the balance of microflora in the body remains undisturbed.<br /><br />&quot;We want to prevent bacteria from creating an infection. Otherwise, you may need antibiotics, which could disrupt the balance of normal bacteria and also enhance the risk of antimicrobial resistance by pathogens,” says Santosh Pandit, postdoc at Biology and Biological Engineering.<br /><br />Vertical flakes of graphene are not a new invention, having existed for a few years. But the Chalmers research teams are the first to use the vertical graphene in this way. The next step for the research team will be to test the graphene flakes further, by coating implant surfaces and studying the effect on animal cells.<br /><br />Chalmers cooperated with <a href="">Wellspect Healthcare</a>, a company which makes catheters and other medical instruments, in this research. They will now continue with a second study. <br /><br />The projects are a part of the national strategic innovation programme SIO Grafen, supported by the Swedish government agencies Vinnova (Sweden’s innovation agency), the Swedish Energy Agency and the Swedish Research Council Formas. The research results are published in Advanced Materials Interfaces: &quot;<a href="">Vertically Aligned Graphene Coating is Bactericidal and Prevents the Formation of Bacterial Biofilms</a>&quot;<br /><br /><strong>The making of vertical graphene</strong><br />Graphene is made of carbon atoms. It is only a single atomic layer thick, and therefore the world's thinnest material. Graphene is made in flakes or films. It is 200 times stronger than steel and has very good conductivity thanks to its rapid electron mobility. Graphene is also extremely sensitive to molecules, which allows it to be used in sensors.<br /><br />Graphene can be made by CVD, or Chemical Vapor Deposition. The method is used to create a thin surface coating on a sample. The sample is placed in a vacuum chamber and heated to a high temperature at the same time as three gases – usually hydrogen, methane and argon – are released into the chamber. The high heat causes gas molecules to react with each other, and a thin layer of carbon atoms is created.<br />To produce vertical graphene forms, a process known as Plasma-Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition, or PECVD, is used. Then, an electric field – a plasma – is applied over the sample, which causes the gas to be ionized near the surface. With the plasma, the layer of carbon grows vertically from the surface, instead of horizontally as with CVD.<br /></p> <div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-wpbox"><div class="ms-rtestate-notify ms-rtestate-read 21aa3563-502e-4205-bcb8-3e04875a5b8d" id="div_21aa3563-502e-4205-bcb8-3e04875a5b8d" unselectable="on"></div> <div id="vid_21aa3563-502e-4205-bcb8-3e04875a5b8d" unselectable="on" style="display:none"></div></div> <p><br />Text: Mia Malmstedt<br />Photo and video: Johan Bodell<br />Illustration: Yen Strandqvist </p>Mon, 16 Apr 2018 09:00:00 +0200 Fager is Supervisor of the Year<p><b>​Chalmers Research Supervisor of the Year 2017/2018 Award is granted to Christian Fager, Professor at the department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience – MC2.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">The award committee has chosen to grant Christian Fager the award for his constant work on refining his supervision skills for his many PhD students. With his high receptivity, individualized supervisor style and research advice, Christian offers significant support to his PhD students' personal development. In addition, he supports the PhD students in their career opportunities and in dealing with obstacles that may occur in other parts of their postgraduate work. His efforts have been noted by both PhD students who have experienced the positive results of his tutoring, and by colleagues within and outside of the department.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <h5 class="chalmersElement-H5">The evaluation procedure</h5> <div>The Doctoral Students Board Committee for the Supervisor of the Year award, selected the winner after a competitive process. Eight high quality nominations were signed by 30 PhD students. After the assessment of the nomination letters, three candidates were selected for the final decision. All PhD students of these candidates were interviewed, along with the heads of research education responsible for the ISP follow-up meetings with PhD students. All additional feedback from both PhD students and senior researchers was welcomed, gathered and analysed by the Committee before the final decision. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>With many commendable candidates, the decision was hard to make. The Committee would like to stress how happy we were to hear about all of the nominees and about everything that they do for our fellow PhD students.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Photo: Michael Nystås</div>Thu, 12 Apr 2018 09:00:00 +0200 higher and higher with industry support<p><b>​​30 years ago Herbert Zirath was one of the founders of the first electronics laboratory at Chalmers University of Technology. Today he is a professor of high speed electronics with responsibility for the Microwave Electronics Laboratory, which is housed in the university’s well-known MC2 laboratory.</b></p><img src="/en/departments/mc2/news/PublishingImages/hzirath_690x330.jpg" alt="hzirath_690x330.jpg" style="margin:5px" /><br />He also operates as a bi-directional knowledge conduit for Ericsson, where he is employed part-time as an expert on microwave circuits. The projects he presides over are almost limitless, but one clear objective is to create spectrum-efficient wireless communication in order to achieve ever higher data rates.<br /><br />It is impossible to provide a brief summary of Zirath’s career. After a few hours in his company this becomes clear. Instead, you have to cherry-pick from his densely packed portfolio, which started to take form more than 35 years ago when, at random, he started working on microwaves as a doctoral student at Chalmers.<br /><br />A common thread in his research has been the development of transistors with a higher and higher cut-off frequency. By combining materials with different band gaps, electrons can be made to move in a material without doping, thus increasing the speed.<br /><br />Text: Anna Wennberg<br />Photo: Magnus Bergström/KAW<br /><br /><strong>Read full story in Elektroniktidningen &gt;&gt;&gt;</strong><br /><a href=""></a>Wed, 11 Apr 2018 11:00:00 +0200 the hidden nuclei of galaxies<p><b>​Susanne Aalto, Professor of Radio Astronomy, is one of two astronomers at Chalmers University of Technology who has this year been awarded an ERC Advanced Grant, a prestigious award of 2.5 million euros. In the HIDDeN project, her research team will explore how supermassive black holes – like the one in the middle of the Milky Way – grow together with their host galaxies.&quot;Galaxies are important ‘building blocks’ for the universe&#39;s structure, and if you want to understand how the universe develops, you must understand the development of galaxies,&quot; says Susanne Aalto, professor and Head of the division Astronomy and Plasma Physics.</b></p><div></div> <div>The project’s name, HIDDeN, is in reference to galaxies that are enshrouded in dust and gas, often as a result of galaxy collisions and mergers. The dust and gas then act as a fuel during an extremely fast evolutionary phase, where a lot of new stars are born and black holes grow. The project is about understanding this development phase, helping to increase knowledge of the entire universe's evolution. Of particular interest for this project are hidden galaxy nuclei.</div> <div>&quot;We have discovered extremely dust-embedded galaxy nuclei that are invisible, both in normal light and in infrared radiation. We believe that they hide a thus-far unknown, compact and very transient phase of growth. It is either an accreting supermassive black hole, or an extreme form of star birth. The hidden activity also drives huge ‘winds’ and ‘jets’ which eventually expels gas and dust from the galaxy's core. It may be that these winds act as a control system for the evolution of the galaxies.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><i>Investigating things that are hidden sounds quite difficult. How are you doing it?</i></div> <div>“We need to use long-wavelength radio waves, invisible to the human eye, that can pass through the dust and gas and reveal the hidden activity. We have developed a method where we use radiation from molecules, and astrochemistry as ‘measuring tools. We use large international telescopes such as ALMA, the Atacama Large Millimeter Array, in Chile – where Chalmers is also an important supplier of internationally leading receiver technology (<a href="/en/departments/see/news/Pages/Will-image-the-distant-universe.aspx">Read more: Receivers from Chalmers will image the distant universe​</a><span></span>). Chalmers is also involved in even more long-wave technology, participating in international networks of interconnected telescopes, such as LOFAR and VLBI, and in the future, SKA.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><i>What are you hoping the project will lead to?</i></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;We hope, among other things, to find a key to the puzzle of how supermassive black holes grow together with ‘their’ host galaxies, and to see what mechanisms drive the development of the universe forward. We are also looking for evidence that supermassive black holes can regulate their own growth. This can take place through the winds, for example. If they are powerful enough, they can propel gas from the galaxy completely. If they are weaker, the gas flows back so that it can contribute to further growth.”</span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><i><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/SEE/Nyheter/SusanneAalto_JonathanTan_180327_250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />Your colleague, Professor Jonathan Tan at the Division of Astronomy and Plasma Physics, has also been awarded an ERC Advanced Grant this year (<a href="/en/departments/see/news/Pages/Massive-star-formation.aspx">Read more about Jonathan's project Massive Star Formation Through the Universe​</a>). Your division is part of the Department of Space, Earth and Environment. What does it mean for Chalmers to have two such big allocations in the field of astronomical research?</i></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;The ERC awards give us the resources that make it possible to work on large scale research questions. This means that Chalmers can consolidate its place in the world’s elite in mm, submm and radio astronomy. At Astronomy and Plasma Physics we work closely with Onsala Space Observatory and this cooperation is important to our success. We are also looking forward to broadening our cooperation with other institutions, as well as other departments and institutions at Chalmers.”</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><i style="background-color:initial">How do you plan to spend the ERC grant funds?</i><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;In order to address these questions, we need a coordinated observation program on several international telescopes. There is the existing facility at ALMA (link), and two new telescopes scheduled to start in 2020: the James Webb Space Telescope, which will observe space from orbit, and the SKA, or Square Kilometer Array, which will become the world's largest radio telescope.</span><br /></div> <div>In addition, we need t  further develop our modeling work on for example radiative transport, dynamics, astrochemistry and MHD simulations of jets. So we plan to use the money to build a research team.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><i>You are the only woman at Chalmers with an ERC Advanced Grant. What are your thoughts about that?</i></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;Looking at the ERC statistics for advanced grants, Sweden is not doing so well in terms of gender equality. It is interesting to ask why this is, and what we can do about it. In general, it looks much better for starting grants than for advanced. Is this a sign that we can look forward to a new era of more prominent female researchers? Or is it a confirmation of a gloomier picture, where fewer women make it at the ‘higher’ levels? The balance has improved slightly within astronomy at Chalmers. As a researcher and head of department, I want to contribute to an environment where people are seen as individuals, and can develop, and also where women do not ‘fall away’ from research to a greater degree than men&quot;, says Susanne Aalto. </span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Text: Christian Löwhagen. </em></span></div>Fri, 06 Apr 2018 08:00:00 +0200 Joshi winner of the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award<p><b>​The Gothenburg Physics Centre proudly presents Chandrashekhar Joshi as the winner of the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2018.</b></p><img src="/en/centres/gpc/news/Documents/Porträtt_Chandrashekhar_Josh350x305webb.jpg" alt="Porträtt_Chandrashekhar_Josh350x305webb.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" width="303" height="263" style="margin:5px 10px" /> Professor Chandrashekhar Joshi, University of California, Los Angeles, USA, works on plasma-based accelerators and receives the award &quot; for conclusively demonstrating the advantages of using relativistically propagating plasma waves for electron acceleration.&quot;<br /><br />Chandrashekhar Joshi is considered the Father of the experimental field of High-Gradient Plasma-based Charged Particle Acceleration – a paradigm shift for building accelerators of tomorrow. <br /><br />In a career spanning four decades, Joshi and his colleagues have carried out pioneering experiments – using laser and ultra-relativistic electron pulses as drivers<span> –<span style="display:inline-block"></span></span> on electron and positron acceleration using plasma waves thousands of times more rapidly than in a conventional accelerator.<br /><br /><span>The Gothenburg Lise Meitner award ceremony will take place on 20 September 2018 at 15.15 in FB lecture hall at Fysikgården 4. In connection with the award ceremony, the laureate will hold a lecture in honour of the Austrian-Swedish physicist Lise Meitner. <br /><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Read more about the award and previous laureates. </a><br />Thu, 05 Apr 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Great Gold Medal to Chalmers professor<p><b>​Chalmers Professor Björn Jonson has been rewarded with the highest award of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) - the Great Gold Medal named after the Russian scientist Mikhail Lomonosov.</b></p><p>The prize acknowledges outstanding achievements in the natural sciences and the humanities. Among the previous recipients, there are many renowned scientist and even Nobel Prize laureates. <br /><br />&quot;Of course, I’m honoured, but it’s also a recognition of the importance of our field of research within subatomic physic, both here at Chalmers and internationally,” says <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Bjorn-Jonson.aspx">Björn Jonson</a>, Professor at the Department of Physics at Chalmers University of Technology. <br /><br />He was awarded for his extensive contributions within fundamental nuclear physics. Björn Jonson has been engaged in research at Chalmers since 1967 and the Russian Academy of Sciences emphasize that his work is of fundamental importance for the study of the nuclear structure and nuclear stability of exotic lightest nuclei at the boundaries of nucleon stability.<br /><br />The award ceremony was held in Moscow at the General Meeting of the RAS, on Friday 30 March 2018. The Lomonosov Gold Medal is awarded each year since 1959. Since 1967, two medals are awarded annually: one to a Russian and one to a foreign scientist. This time the Russian nuclear physicist Yuri Oganessian was rewarded together with Björn Jonson.  <br />Text: Mia Halleröd Palmgren, <a href=""></a></p> <p>Image: Elena Puzynina, JINR<br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Read more about the award and previous recipients at Wikipedia.</a><br /></p>Tue, 03 Apr 2018 00:00:00 +0200 are ready for an Olympic challenge in physics<p><b>​The best physics students from Swedish upper secondary schools visited the Gothenburg Physics Centre 12-16 March to compete for five places in the International Physics Olympiad in Lisbon, Portugal 21-29 July 2018. The week in Gothenburg also offered lots of seminars, workshops, study visits, experimental work and social activities.</b></p>” It is with pleasure I note that the participants enjoyed their stay with us and that the week encouraged to future studies in physics, not the least in Gothenburg. I’ve met several participants from previous years who are now studying physics here with us&quot;, says Jonathan Weidow, Associate Professor at the Department of Physics at Chalmers and one of the organisers of the week. <br /><br />The Physics Olympiad in Sweden is arranged by the Swedish Physical Society, with financial support from the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation. The Swedish award is known as the Wallenberg Physics Prize. <br />The students did some experimental tests during the week at the Gothenburg Physics Centre. On 25-27 April the competitions will continue in Estonia. After that we will know the names of the five who will represent Sweden in Lisbon. <br /><br />In addition to the competing students, some of the most talented female students in the second year of their upper secondary studies took part of the physics week in Gothenburg as VIP guests. The aim is to encourage them to take part of the competition next year. <br />“I really appreciated the week. I have learned a lot and it was nice to meet students from all over Sweden who also love physics,” says Johanna Odbratt, one of the invited students.  <br /><br />The last day the whole group enjoyed a very special ice-cream. The delicious dessert was ready-made in a minute - thanks to liquid nitrogen. The students also tried to dip biscuits into the substance, resulting in lots of cold smoke flowing out of the mouth. <a href="">Check out the experiment here! <br /></a>Text: Mia Halleröd Palmgren, <a href=""></a><br /><a href=""></a><br /><span><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" /></a><a href=""><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span>The Swedish Radio reported from the last day of the week in Gothenburg. <a href=";artikel=6908698">Listen to the report (in Swedish) here.</a> (The report starts after 23 seconds in the clip.)<br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Read more about Wallenbergs fysikpris.</a><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Check out more pictures on Facebook. </a><a href=""></a><br />Mon, 26 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Swedish satellite to map unstudied winds high up in Earth&#39;s atmosphere<p><b>​Chalmers University of Technology has won the competition to provide Sweden’s next national research satellite to the Swedish National Space Board. The satellite, named SIW, will be the first to study wind currents in the upper atmosphere, increasing understanding about how they affect weather and climate.</b></p><div>​”I am really happy to see our proposal become a reality”, says Kristell Pérot, researcher in the Division of Microwave and Optical Remote Sensing, at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment at Chalmers.</div> <div>SIW, which stands for Stratospheric Inferred Winds, will study wind patterns in the atmosphere to answer questions about their dynamics and circulation. It will contribute important data to climate models, and increase understanding of how the different parts of the atmosphere interact.</div> <div> </div> <h4 class="chalmersElement-H4">Better weather forecasting</h4> The climate and weather in the troposphere, the layer closest to Earth’s surface, is affected by wind changes in the two layers above, the stratosphere and the mesosphere (altitudes between 11 and 85 kilometres). Observing and analysing events in the upper layers is therefore critical to achieving more reliable long-term predictions. <div> </div> <div>For example, many consider the recent cold weather across Europe this month, and concurrent warmer temperatures in the Arctic, to be linked to temperature changes in the upper atmosphere – so-called ’sudden stratospheric warming’.</div> <div> </div> <div>“This process is not very well understood in current models, and more knowledge is needed. With SIW, it will be easier to study this kind of event and to understand the forces behind them. That has never been done in this way before” says Kristell Pérot.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>“SIW will also be a fine complement to the satellite Aeolus, to be launched by the European Space Agency later this year to study the winds lower down in the atmosphere,” she adds.</div> <div> </div> <h4 class="chalmersElement-H4">Dual purpose</h4> <div>Patrick Eriksson, professor of Global Environmental Measurements at Chalmers, believes the second part of SIW’s mission will be equally important – to measure the concentration of certain gases in the atmosphere.</div> <div> </div> <div>”As it stands, SIW looks to be alone in being able to measuring the gases that are important to assessing the status of the ozone layer. Above all, it’s chlorine- and nitrogen-bearing gases that we want to keep track of. SIW will take over that role after the <span style="background-color:initial">satellite </span><span style="background-color:initial">Odin</span><span style="background-color:initial">, </span><span style="background-color:initial">which will soon be ready for retirement after 17 years in space” says Eriksson.</span></div> <span></span><div></div> <div> </div> <div>Several Swedish companies will participate in the SIW project, including Omnisys Instruments, which will be responsible for the scientific instruments, and OHB Sweden, which will construct the satellite itself and have overall responsibility for the project. Donal Murtagh, professor of Global Environmental Measurements and Head of Division Microwave and Optical Remote Sensing at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment, will be scientifically responsible for SIW. <span>The satellite will also contain parts manufactured at the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience – MC2 – at Chalmers. <span></span><span style="display:inline-block"></span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span></div>   <div>The Swedish National Space Board will finance the production and launch of SIW, which will be the second satellite in its innovative research satellites venture. It is scheduled for launch in 2022.</div> <div> </div> <div>You can read more about the SIW satellite on the <a href="">Swedish National Space Board’s website </a>(Swedish only).<br /> </div> <div> </div> <div><strong>For more information, contact:</strong></div> <div><span><span>​</span>,</span> Professor of Global Environmental Measurements and Head of Division, Microwave and Optical Remote Sensing at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment</div> <div><span>r</span><span>ot</span>, researcher from the Division of Microwave and Optical Remote Sensing, at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment</div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/patrick-eriksson.aspx">Patrick Eriksson</a>, Professor of Global Environmental Measurements at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment</div> <div><br /> </div>Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0100