Dear colleagues and nanoscience enthusiasts,

The SNI is increasingly taking advantage of social media channels like Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, as well as the SNI website, to publish news of its activities. This allows us to react quickly, and get the latest developments to you right away. In this context, the traditional newsletter is becoming an outdated format.

Nevertheless, as many of you have come to treasure the news round-up provided by our SNI update, we have decided not to do away with our regular bulletins altogether. From now on, we will publish SNI INSight three times a year. 

SNI INSight is a digital magazine in which we report on SNI activities and provide more detailed coverage of our research projects than you will find in our regular news updates.

In this inaugural issue, you can read about the approach adopted by the recent start-up NUONEX, and discover why the SNI is proudly following the growth of this young firm. NUONEX brings together a number of strands that are key to the SNI’s mission:  training of dedicated young researchers in the nanoscience program, basic research in the PhD school, and applied research in the Nano Argovia program. 

Besides founding start-ups, the career options open to graduates of the nanoscience program also include research in space – as demonstrated by a visit from alumnus Florian Kehl, who gave this year’s SNI lecture, in which he told us all about his exciting research at NASA.

For many years, the SNI has supported the workshops at the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, which play a crucial part in the success of our research activities. The electronics workshop contributed decisively to a project initiated by Professor emeritus Peter Oelhafen that was awarded the Watt d’Or energy prize earlier this year.

It is still early days for the Nano Argovia projects that began in the new year. This applied research program is enjoying growing popularity, and this year we were able to select six ambitious projects involving collaboration with companies in Northwestern Switzerland. The first three of these exciting projects are presented in this issue of SNI INSight.

I hope you enjoy these insights into the SNI. We look forward to receiving your feedback, as well as any information from the network that we can pass on to all our readers in future issues. 

Kind regards,

Christian Schönenberger, SNI director