Events - today, tomorrow ... soon Highlights and News
today and tomorrow no events
30 January 2019: Dynamic aspirin - molecular vibrations drive electrons over large distances
Aspirin is not only an important drug but also an interesting physics model system in which molecular vibrations and electrons are coupled in a particular way. For the first time, x-ray experiments in the ultrashort time domain make electron motions visible in real time. They demonstrate that very small atomic displacements shift electrons over much larger distances within the aspirin molecules. ...more
17 January 2019: How Molecules teeter in a laser field
When molecules interact with the oscillating field of a laser, an instantaneous, time-dependent dipole is induced. This very general effect underlies diverse physical phenomena such as optical tweezers, for which Arthur Ashkin received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2018, as well as the spatial alignment of molecules by a laser field. Now scientists from the Max Born Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short Pulse Spectroscopy (MBI) report on an experiment in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, where the dependence of the driven-dipole response on the bound state of an electron in an methyl iodine molecule is revealed. ...more
1st January 2019: New dynamic probes for ions interacting with biomolecules
Pairs of negatively charged phosphate groups and positive magnesium ions represent a key structural feature of DNA and RNA embedded in water. Vibrations of phosphate groups have now been established as selective probes of such contact pairs and allow for a mapping of interactions and structure on the ultrafast time scales of molecular dynamics. ...more
27 December 2018: 5000 times faster than a computer - interatomic light rectifier generates directed electric currents
The absorption of light in semiconductor crystals without inversion symmetry can generate electric currents. Researchers at the Max-Born-Institute have now generated directed currents at terahertz (THz) frequencies, much higher than the clock rates of current electronics. They show that electronic charge transfer between neighboring atoms in the crystal lattice represents the underlying mechanism. ...more
20 December 2018: Looking at molecules from two sides with table-top femtosecond soft-X-rays
X-ray spectroscopy provides direct access into the nature of chemical bonds, from which the outcome of chemical reactions can be understood. For this, intense activities both at x-ray source development and implementation of new measurement methods is pursued by key research labs. Researchers at the MBI have now successfully combined a table-top laser-based extreme high-order harmonic source for short-pulse soft-x-ray absorption spectroscopy in the water window with novel flatjet technology. They are the first to demonstrate the simultaneous probing of carbon and nitrogen atoms in organic molecules in aqueous solution. ...more
12 December 2018:
Dejan Milošević, professor at the Faculty of Science of the University of Sarajevo and member of the Academy of Sciences and Arts of Bosnia and Hercegovina, receives a Georg Forster Research Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation for his seminal contributions to the theory of intense-laser interaction with atoms and molecules and attoscience.
He has maintained a very close collaboration with the Max Born Institute through several institute-linkage programs and many visits ever since his first extended stay as an Alexander von Humboldt fellow almost 20 years ago. ...more
28 November 2018: Atomic jet - the first lens for extreme-ultraviolet light developed
Scientists from the Max Born Institute (MBI) have developed the first refractive lens that focuses extreme ultraviolet beams. Instead of using a glass lens, which is non-transparent in the extreme-ultraviolet region, the researchers have demonstrated a lens that is formed by a jet of atoms. The results, which provide novel opportunities for the imaging of biological samples on the shortest timescales, were published in Nature. ...more
8 November 2018: Dr. Daniela Rupp received the "Mayor's Young Talent Award" at the "Science Award of the Governing Mayor of Berlin 2018
In an award ceremony held at the Berlin town hall ("Rotes Rathaus") on Wednesday November 7th, Dr. Daniela Rupp, the leader of the Junior Research Group "Ultrafast Dynamics Dynamics in Nanoplasma" received the Mayor's Young Talent Award ("Nachwuchspreis") from Mayor Michael Müller, for her pioneering research on imaging the structure and dynamics of nano-scale particles using single-shot coherent diffractive imaging. ...more
17 September 2018: Future Data Storage Technology - Extremely small magnetic nanostructures with invisibility cloak image
In novel concepts of magnetic data storage, it is intended to send small magnetic bits back and forth in a chip structure, store them densely packed and read them out later. The magnetic stray field generates problems when trying to generate particularly tiny bits. Now, researchers at the Max Born Institute (MBI), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) und DESY were able to put an "invisibility cloak" over the magnetic structures. In this fashion, the magnetic stray field can be reduced in a fashion allowing for small yet mobile bits. The results were published in "Nature Nanotechnology". ...more
27 August 2018: Electric polarization in the macroscopic world and electrons moving at atomic scales - a new link from femtosecond x-ray experiments
Femtosecond x-ray experiments in combination with a new theoretical approach establish a direct connection between electric properties in the macroscopic world and electron motions on the time and length scale of atoms. The results open a new route for understanding and tailoring the properties of ferroelectric materials. ...more
8 August 2018: Slow, but efficient: Low-energy electron emission from intense laser cluster interactions
For the past 30 years intense laser cluster interactions have been seen primarily as a way to generate energetic ions and electrons. In surprising contrast with the hitherto prevailing paradigm, a team of researchers has now found that copious amounts of relatively slow electrons are also produced in intense laser cluster interactions. These low-energy electrons constitute a previously missing link in the understanding of the processes occurring when an intense laser pulse interacts with a nanoscale particle, a situation that is highly relevant for the in-situ imaging of biomolecules on ultrashort timescales. ...more
27 July 2018: Concepts for new switchable plasmonic nanodevices: a magneto-plasmonic nanoscale router and a high-contrast magneto-plasmonic disk modulator controlled by external magnetic fields
Plasmonic waveguides open the possibility to develop dramatically miniaturized optical devices and provide a promising route towards the next-generation of integrated nanophotonic circuits for information processing, optical computing and others. Key elements of nanophotonic circuits are switchable plasmonic routers and plasmonic modulators. Recently Dr. Joachim Herrmann (MBI) and his external collaborators developed new concepts for the realization of such nanodevices. They investigated the propagation of surface-plasmon-polaritons (SPP) in magneto-plasmonic waveguides. Based on the results of this study they proposed new variants of switchable magneto-plasmonic routers and magneto-plasmonic disk modulators for various nanophotonic functionalities. ...more
27 July 2018: Benjamin Fingerhut receives the ERC Starting Grant
Dr. Benjamin Fingerhut, junior group leader at the Max Born Institute (MBI), is recipient of the prestigious ERC Starting Grant 2018. The project addresses ultrafast biomolecular dynamics via a non-adiabatic theoretical approach. The award is granted by the European Research Council (ERC) to support excellent researchers at the beginning of their independent research careers. ...more
13 July 2018: What happens when we heat the atomic lattice of a magnet all of a sudden?
Magnets have fascinated humans for several thousand years and enabled the age of digital data storage. They occur in various flavors. Ferrimagnets form the largest class of magnets and consist of two types of atoms. Similar to a compass needle, each atom exhibits a little magnetic moment, also called spin, which arises from the rotation of the atom's electrons about their own axes. In a ferrimagnet, the magnetic moments point in opposite directions for the two types of atoms (see panel A). Thus, the total magnetization is the sum of all magnetic moments of type 1 (M1), blue arrows) and type 2 (M2), green arrows). Due to the opposite direction, the magnitude of the total magnetization is M1-M2. ...more
21 June 2018: "Dr. Federico Furch named 2018 OSA Ambassador"
In October of 2017 the Optical Society (OSA) announced the 2018 class of OSA Ambassadors. One member of this class is MBI researcher Dr. Federico Furch, who in the last few years has been responsible for the development of a state-of-the-art 100 kHz OPCPA laser system that is currently being implemented in attosecond experiments. ...more
14 June 2018: "Picture of atomic orbitals featured in NOVA/PBS documentary"
Pictures of atomic hydrogen orbitals measured by MBI researchers are featured in a new NOVA/PBS documentary (see link). In the video, it is explained how the two-dimensional wavefunction of a hydrogen atom can be visualized by recording a large number of ionized electrons, one at a time, on a 2-dimensional detector. The results were published in Physical Review Letters in 2013 (see Highlight link MBI website). and voted one of the Top 10 breakthroughs in Physics in 2013 (see Highlight link MBI website). ...more.
13 June 2018: Dr. Daniela Rupp will receive the Karl Scheel Prize 2018
The Physical Society of Berlin announced this year's Karl Scheel laureate. We congratulate Dr. Daniela Rupp, who will receive the award on June 22, 2018 at 5 p.m. the Magnus-Haus in Berlin Mitte. ...more.
31 May 2018: X-Ray Holography reveals Nano-Patchwork during Phase Transition in Vanadium Dioxide
In the prototypical material VO2, the role of electronic correlation in the phase transition between the insulating and metallic phase have long been debated. Combining spectroscopy and holography with x-rays, an international team of scientists has now observed how tiny patches of different phases evolve during the phase transition. ...more.
4 May 2018: Laser-driven electron recollision remembers molecular orbital structure
Scientists from the Max Born Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short Pulse Spectroscopy (MBI) in Berlin combined state-of-the-art experiments and numerical simulations to test a fundamental assumption underlying strong-field physics. Their results refine our understanding of strong-field processes such as high harmonic generation (HHG) and laser-induced electron diffraction (LIED). The results have been published in "Science Advances". ...more.
16 April 2018: Freeing electrons to better trap them
For the first time, researchers from UNIGE and MBI in Berlin have placed an electron in a dual state - neither freed nor bound - thus confirming a hypothesis from the 1970s. ...more.
16 April 2018: From insulator to conductor in a flash
A clever combination of novel technologies enables us to study promising materials for the electronics of tomorrow. Over the past decades, computers have become faster and faster and hard disks and storage chips have reached enormous capacities. But this trend cannot continue forever: we are already running up against physical limits that will prevent silicon-based computer technology from attaining any impressive speed gains from this point on. ...more.
12 April 2018: Wiggling atoms switch the electric polarization of crystals
Ferroelectric crystals display a macroscopic electric polarization, a superposition of many dipoles at the atomic scale which originate from spatially separated electrons and atomic nuclei. The macroscopic polarization is expected to change when the atoms are set in motion but the connection between polarization and atomic motions has remained unknown. A time-resolved x-ray experiment now elucidates that tiny atomic vibrations shift negative charges over a 1000 times larger distance between atoms and switch the macroscopic polarization on a time scale of a millionth of a millionth of a second....more.
9 April 2018: X-ray snapshots of reacting acids and bases - Erik T. J. Nibbering receives an ERC Advanced Grant for groundbreaking basic research
Dr. Erik T. J. Nibbering of the Max Born Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short Pulse Spectroscopy (MBI) in Berlin receives an Advanced Grant from the European Research Council (ERC). Goal with this prestigious award is to investigate and elucidate the elementary steps of aqueous proton transfer dynamics between acids and bases. The ERC Advanced Grant is endowed with 2.5 million euro and awarded to well-established top researchers in Europe pursuing scientifically excelling projects. ...more.
27 February 2018: A spinning top of light
Short, rotating pulses of light reveal a great deal about the inner structure of materials. An international team of physicists led by Prof. Misha Ivanov of the Max Born Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short Pulse Spectroscopy (MBI) has now developed a new method for precisely characterising such extremely short light pulses. The research results have been published in Nature Communications. ...more.
19 February 2018: C'mon electrons, let's do the twist! Twisting electrons can tell right-handed and left-handed molecules apart.
Identifying right-handed and left-handed molecules is a crucial step for many applications in chemistry and pharmaceutics. An international research team (CELIA-CNRS/INRS/ Berlin Max Born Institute/SOLEIL) has now presented a new original and very sensitive method. The researchers use laser pulses of extremely short duration to excite electrons in molecules into twisting motion, the direction of which reveals the molecules' handedness. The research results appear in Nature Physics. ...more.
16 January 2018: Flexibility and arrangement - the interaction of ribonucleic acid and water
Ribonucleic acid (RNA) plays a key role in biochemical processes which occur at the cellular level in a water environment. Mechanisms and dynamics of the interaction between RNA and water were now revealed by vibrational spectroscopy on ultrashort time scales and analyzed by in-depth theory. ...more.
15 January 2018: Instant x-ray footprints
MBI scientists together with colleagues from Italy have established a way to detect the exact x-ray fluence footprint generated on a sample by a free electron laser pulse. ...more.
1 January 2018: Marc Vrakking named Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Physics B
Prof. Marc Vrakking, director of Division A of the Max Born Institute, has been named Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Physics B from January 1st 2018. In this capacity he succeeds Prof. Paul Corkum of the University of Ottawa, who served as Editor-in-Chief since 2011. ...more.


You find more in the Archive .... here