With funding of 54 million euro under the FRP’s sixth funding program (FP6) for a total of 184 projects, the University of Stuttgart led the way among German universities. The University also was among the top German universities recipients under FP7, which lasted from 2007 to 2013, by garnering 94 million euros for funding a total of 248 projects.
ERC-Grants at the University of Stuttgart
European Research Council projects and subventions fall into three categories:
- Starting Grants for young scientists beginning an independent research career and wishing to start a working group.
Funding per grant: up to 1.5 million euro
- Consolidator Grants for researchers whose working group is in its consolidation phase.
Funding per grant: up to 2 million euro
- Advanced Grants for established investigators with an outstanding research track record. The Advanced Grant is one of the world’s most prestigious research grants.
Funding per grant: up to 2.5 million euro
Starting Grants Recipients
Professor Oliver Röhrle works on biomechanical simulations of the body. The computer models he developed among other things help to simulate the motion sequences of people with leg amputations. “In this way, we can make a valuable contribution to improving the interaction between stump and shank,” Röhrle explains.
- Grant recipient: Prof. Oliver Röhrle, Institute of Applied Mechanics (Civil Engineering), Chair II
- Project: “LEAD: Lower Extremity Amputee Dynamics: Simulating the Motion of an above-knee amputee’s stump by means of a novel EMG-integrated 3D musculoskeletal forward dynamics modelling approach”
- Term: 2012 - 2017
Main research focus of Dr. Petr Neugebauer is in method development of magnetic resonance spectroscopy, especially Electron Spin Resonance (ESR). Within the ERC Starting Grant, he is going to develop new ESR method which will provide, up to now very limited, information about electron spin dynamics in THz range. “The electron spin dynamics are of crucial interest not only for understanding of the nature itself, but it have also practical impacts on the design of a zero-field quantum computer and better magnetic resonance scanners in hospitals among others,” Neugebauer says.
- Designated Grant recipient: Dr. Petr Neugebauer, Institute of Physical Chemistry
- Project: “THz-FRaScan-ESR: THz Frequency Rapid Scan – Electron Spin Resonance spectroscopy for spin dynamics investigations of bulk and surface materials”
- Planed Term: 2017 – 2022
Consolidator Grants Recipients
Using simulations, Prof. Johannes Kästner studies the quantum mechanical tunneling of atoms, which accelerates certain chemical reactions and even makes reactions possible in frigid space. “I’ve been fascinated by tunneling for years,” says Kästner. “Thanks to the EU funding, I can investigate this effect in a comprehensive manner and also significantly expand my research group.”
- Grant recipient: Prof. Johannes Kästner, Institute of Theoretical Chemistry
- Project: "TUNNELCHEM: Atom tunneling in chemistry"
- Term: 2015 - 2020
Normally, interactions such as light refraction or reflection only occur with photons and atoms. In his SIRPOL project, Prof. Hans Peter Büchler investigates a method that can call forth a strong interaction between individual photons (light particles). It originates with the observation that there is a strong interaction between Rydberg atoms (atoms with a specific electron charge) and that they change their wave function in the presence of a photon.
- Recipient: Professor Hans Peter Büchler, Institute of Theoretical Physics III
- Project: "SIRPOL: Strongly-interacting Rydberg Slow Light Polaritons"
- Term: 2016 - 2021
Prof. Albrecht Schmidt supervises the AMPLIFY project that deals with enhancing human perceptivity through interactive digital technologies. The objectives are artificial cognitions and synthetic reflexes that can be deployed intuitively and naturally to give humans new computer-aided capabilities.
- Recipient: Prof. Albrecht Schmidt, Institute for Visualization and Interactive Systems
- Project: "AMPLIFY: Amplifying Human Perception through Interactive Digital Technologies"
- Term: 2016 - 2021
Advanced Grants Recipients
Controlling long range interactions in quantum gases
Quantum systems with long-range interactions offer new possibilities for secure data transmission and quantum computing. Prof. Tilman Pfau and his team study the transformation of photons in atomic gases through efficient absorption. This interaction is crucial for data transmission.
- Recipient: Professor Tilman Pfau, Institute of Physics (5)
- Project: "LIQAD: Long-range Interacting Quantum Systems and Devices"
- Term: 2011 - 2016
Researchers in the Physical Institute (3) enjoy worldwide renown for their work in manipulating individual atoms in diamond. By targeted insertion of foreign atoms, such as nitrogen atoms, defects can be produced that behave like atoms native to the material. Quantum conditions can be induced by electrospinning a certain type of these defect, which hold the key to information processing or transmission. This phenomenon is to be exploited in the SQUTEC project to speed up information processing or transmission and construct sensors with previously unheard of sensitivities.
- Recipient: Professor Jörg Wrachtrup, Institute of Physics (3)
- Project: "SQUTEC: Solid State Technology and Metrology Using Spins"
- Duration: 2011 - 2016
In recent years, plasmonics has revolutionized optics. With the help of metallic nanostructures, light can be concentrated on the smallest dimensions using nanoantennas that are much smaller than the wavelength of light. This has led to new interaction effects between light and matter, e.g., in sensor technology or nonlinear optics Professor Giessen and his group examine the ultimate limits to interactions of individual nanoantennas with separate objects, molecules, and proteins as well as chiral interactions. This work is intended to bridge the gap between basic research and potential application and between the fields of physics, chemistry, and molecular biology.
- Recipient: Professor Harald Giessen, Institute of Physics (4)
- Project: "COMPLEXPLAS: Complex Plasmonics at the Ultimate Limit: Single Particle and Single Molecule Levels"
- Term: 2013 - 2018
Professor Hans-Joachim Werner and his team experimentally measure as precisely as possible molecular physical and chemical properties in order to understand how molecules react with one another. Werner summarizes his research this way: “Our goal is to develop theories and computer programs for simulating chemical reactions. Starting from the fundamental physical laws and natural constants, we want to predict the properties and reactivity of molecules without utilizing empirical information.”
- Recipient: Prof. Hans-Joachim Werner, Institute of Theoretical Chemistry
- Project: “ASES: Advancing computational chemistry with new, accurate, robust and scalable electronic structure methods"
- Term: 2013 - 2018
The behavior of colloidal particles able to actively move in fluids is the subject of research by Prof. Clemens Bechinger and his team. Among other capabilities, such particles can build swarms. Also being investigated are both the preconditions for the creation of these particle swarms and ideal navigation strategies for use in steering the swarms to specified targets. This latter capability could be of great interest for the targeted delivery of drugs in biological systems.
- Recipient: Professor Clemens Bechinger, Institute of Physics (2)
- Project: "ASCIR: Active Suspensions with Controlled Interaction Rules"
- Term: 2016 - 2021
Activities under the European Institute of Technology (EIT) Framework
From its headquarters in Budapest, the European Innovations and Technology Institute since 2008 has operated with the goal of bridging the gap between research and (entrepreneurial) innovation in Europe, between idea and product, laboratory and market, and students to enterprises. On the practical level, this happens through a series of cluster associations called “Knowledge and Innovation Communities” or KICs.
The University of Stuttgart participates in an InnoEnergy KIC focusing on renewable energies. The consortium’s goals include cost reduction in the energy production chain, safety gains, and the reduction of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.