News from the network

The Swiss Federal Government awards two centres for antibiotic resistance research and quantum computing to the University of Basel. (Photo: University of Basel, Christian Flierl)

The University of Basel gains two new National Centers of Competence in Research (NCCR)
The University of Basel has received a grant for two new National Centers of Competence in Research (NCCR), focusing on antibiotic research and quantum technology. The federal government is providing total funding of CHF 34 million for the two programs in the first funding phase to 2024, bringing the number of NCCRs with the University of Basel as their “leading house” up to three.

The Department of Physics heads the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) for the development of a silicon-based quantum computer.

Media release University of Basel and additional information


Patrick Maletinsky receives ERC Consolidator Grant
Three researchers from the University of Basel receive one of the coveted ERC Consolidator Grants from the European Research Council (ERC). Patrick Maletinsky from the Department of Physics, Marek Basler from the Biozentrum, and Dennis Gillingham from the Department of Chemistry will receive a total of 6.7 million Euros over five years.
Media release University of Basel



ARTIDIS joins world’s largest medical center and secures funding of CHF 8.8 Mio
ARTIDIS announced its successful integration in the highly competitive international Medical Device Cohort 2019 at the Texas Medical Center’s Innovation Institute. Additionally, ARTIDIS successfully closed a CHF 8.8 million seed financing in two rounds securing early clinical validation and the next development phase towards market entry in 2021. The company, which is a spin off from the Biozentrum and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel, is developing a medical device based on nanotechnology for clinical application in cancer diagnostics.

Sources: Media releases ARTIDIS


Qnami announced the closing of a 2.6 Mio CHF seed round
Qnami announced the closing of a 2.6 Mio CHF seed round led by Venture Capital fund Quantonation and further supported by investiere, ZKB Start-up Finance and the High Tech Gründerfond. The funds will support the market entry of Qnami’s first product, a quantum microscope for inspection of magnetic materials at the nanoscale, and further developments of quantum sensing applications.

Media release Qnami


A cavity leads to a strong interaction between light and matter
Researchers have succeeded in creating an efficient quantum-mechanical light-matter interface using a microscopic cavity. Within this cavity, a single photon is emitted and absorbed up to 10 times by an artificial atom. This opens up new prospects for quantum technology, report physicists at the University of Basel and Ruhr-University Bochum in the journal Nature.
Original source


FET-OPEN grant for topological states in germanium nanowires
Limited scalability and the high sensitivity of qubits as building blocks for the quantum computer are still in the way of the ‘super computer’s’ big breakthrough. Researchers of the University of Twente, together with colleagues from Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands may have found a promising solution to address these challenges. They have been awarded a 3.1 million euro financial contribution from the EU’s Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) programme.
Original source


Umbrella organization gives green light for ANAXAM national technology transfer center planned in Aargau
The Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW), the Swiss Nanoscience Institute (SNI), and the Canton of Aargau are planning a national Advanced Manufacturing Technology Transfer Center (AM-TTC) supported by the federal government together with industrial partners. The umbrella organization AM-TTC Alliance has approved the concept and the financial support required for the start-up phase of the nationally oriented project ANAXAM (Analytics with Neutrons and X-Rays for Advanced Manufacturing).
Media release Canton of Aargau

On 1 December, ANAXAM started operations and was presented to the public on 5 December.
Media release Canton of Aargau


How to control friction in topological insulators
Topological insulators are innovative materials that conduct electricity on the surface, but act as insulators on the inside. Physicists at the University of Basel and the Istanbul Technical University have begun investigating how they react to friction. Their experiment shows that the heat generated through friction is significantly lower than in conventional materials. This is due to a new quantum mechanism, the researchers report in the scientific journal Nature Materials.
Original source



Ideal method for determining the length of graphene nanoribbons
Writing in ACS Nano, researchers from the SNI network have described how Raman spectroscopy can be used as a sensitive method for the investigation of graphene nanoribbons. The technique can be used to analyze their structural integrity, length and substrate interaction. In contrast to low-temperature scanning tunneling microscopy, which is often used in this context, Raman spectroscopy allows straightforward characterization of instruments for practical applications.
Original source


Machine learning at the quantum lab
The electron spin of individual electrons in quantum dots could serve as the smallest information unit of a quantum computer. Scientists from the Universities of Oxford, Basel and Lancaster have developed an algorithm that can be used to measure quantum dots automatically. Writing in the Nature-family journal npj Quantum Information, they describe how they can speed up this hugely time-consuming process by a factor of four with the help of machine learning. Their approach to the automatic measurement and control of qubits therefore represents a key step toward their large-scale application.
Original source


Molecular electronics: A molecular bridge further
Electronics built from molecules could open up new possibilities in the miniaturization of circuits in the future. Empa researchers, together with partners from Switzerland, the Netherlands, Israel, and the UK, succeeded in solving a crucial detail in the realization of such circuit elements: A molecular bridge for electrons that remains mechanically and electronically stable at room temperature. The results have just been published in the journal “Nature Nanotechnology”.
Media release Empa


Alex and Felix have also won the European Contest for Young Scientists
The two high school graduates Alex Korocencev and Felix Sewing, who were supported by the SNI and the Department of Physics, have won the European Contest for Young Scientists with their magnetically levitated (maglev) train.
Further information