Surface Science & Coating Technologies

The laboratory for Surface Science and Coating Technologies covers activities ranging from fundamental research to application-driven industry collaborations. A deep understanding of materials as well as of chemical and physical processes starting often at the nanoscale is the basis for us to design new products that offers improved characteristics and functionalities. We want to understand "why" to know "how". 
The group "Molecular Surface Science" performs state of the art research on molecular surface systems with the scope of providing more insight into molecular self-assembly, crystallization phenomena and molecular surface dynamics. Investigating model systems with scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and other surface methods allows a better understanding of complex mechanisms in materials science at the nanoscale.
The group "Tribology & Surface Analytics" explores the basic mechanisms of wear and friction, which is advantageous in a large variety of applications. These include industrial machinery with sliding or rolling components, engines, artificial joints, watches, and wind turbines. Furthermore the group develops and uses advanced methods and devices of surface analytics.
The group "Coating Technologies" explores and develops new thin films and coatings – mainly fabricated by PVD technologies – with properties enhanced by improved deposition processes, nanoscale effects and combinations of different materials. The aim is to understand the mechanisms and interrelations in the coating process to be able to control it.