Picture of the month

Picture of the Month: Atom by atom towards the perfect LED

Not all electron microscopes are the same. Since the first set-up in 1931, researchers have been working at great expense to achieve ever higher resolutions. The most powerful electron microscope at the TU Braunschweig, the TEM, is therefore completely sealed off from mechanical vibrations (such as trams rattling past) and magnetic fields (such as the earth’s magnetic field) at the LENA research centre.

The TEM allows a look at the atomic structure of the semiconductor gallium nitride (GaN). Picture credits: Daesung Park/TU Braunschweig

Our picture of the month gives an insight into what the super device is capable of: the atomic structure of the semiconductor gallium nitride is finely lined up. As part of the QuantumFrontiers cluster of excellence and Quantum Valley Lower Saxony, researchers from TU Braunschweig and the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt are jointly developing tiny blue LEDs from the material gallium nitride. During the complex LED production in the clean rooms of the Institute of Semiconductor Technology, gallium nitride is repeatedly produced, coated and etched. The researchers find out how good the next LED generation has become primarily through electron microscopy. The high-resolution TEM makes it possible for the scientists to go into detail, atom by atom, even with material samples that are already nanometres in size.

Dr Heiko Bremers and Dr Daesung Park (from left) at the TEM in the LENA research centre. Picture credits: Jan Hosan/TU Braunschweig


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Does everything fit? Then send us your photo with the subject “Picture of the month” to presse@tu-braunschweig.de. We reserve the right to decide which photos to publish.


Pictures of previous months

Picture of the month June 2022

Three-dimensional crystal structures should make UV LEDs more efficient in the future. Picture credits: Hendrik Spende, Christoph Margenfeld/ TU Braunschweig

UV light has a wide range of applications: Depending on the wavelength and energy intensity of the light, UV LEDs can sterilise surfaces and water, make tomatoes grow particularly tasty or be used in dermatology for skin treatments. However, the efficiency of the “invisible” UV LEDs can still be improved. A team at the Institute of Semiconductor Technology is researching this. Their approach: The crystal layers within the UV LEDs are laid out three-dimensionally as a microstructure instead of as a two-dimensional disc, as was previously the case. Analyses under the electron microscope – as seen here in the Picture of the Month June – indicate a high efficiency of the UV LEDs constructed in this way. Read more

Picture of the month May 2022

An unusual view of Braunschweig: The SpACE Lab visualised the user-centric categorisation of street segments. Picture credits: SpACE Lab/TU Braunschweig

What role does a street play in the overall network? And how do the individual segments of the urban street network relate to each other? This is what the SpACE Lab at ISU – Institute for Sustainable Urbanism at Technische Universität Braunschweig is working on. The “Spatial Analytics and Crossdisciplinarity Experimentation Lab” develops data-driven methods and solutions for human centric sustainable mobility. In the work shown here, the interdisciplinary team focuses on developing a network-based user-centric categorisation of street segments. This can be used, for example, to make statements about the quality of the network for different street users. Our picture of the month May visualises this categorisation to get a better understanding of the Urban Street Network.

Picture of the month April 2022

Close-up of a piece of fabric measuring about four by two centimeters, located at various points on the inside of a so-called ECG T-shirt. Photo: Markus Hörster/TU Braunschweig

Our picture of the month April 2022 does not show a landscape on a distant planet, but a special fabric. The piece of fabric, which measures about four by two centimetres, can be found in various places on the inside of a so-called ECG T-shirt. It is used to measure an electrocardiogram (ECG) without the patients noticing anything. The Peter L. Reichertz Institute for Medical Informatics (PLRI) at Technische Universität Braunschweig and the Medizinische Hochschule Hannover is using this to research the future of health monitoring. Read more

Picture of the month March 2022

A moving robot with radar unit creates ground scans down to a depth of 40 centimetres. Picture credits: IMN/TU Braunschweig

The picture shows a scan of a ground-penetrating radar. It shows unchanging objects in the ground. If the data is combined with the position from laser measurements, a map developed from this information can be used for the navigation of mobile robots. A laser or cameras would then no longer be necessary. The Institute for Mobile Machines and Commercial Vehicles is conducting research on this in the “LoBaBo” project. Read more

Picture of the month February 2022

Picture credits: Michael Kraft/TU Braunschweig

Here they are, the first early bloomers in the Botanical Garden poking their little heads out. The native winter aconite is one of the quickest. With its bright yellow flowers, it already has its big moment in February. Under the still leafless trees, the small tuberous flowers form dense flower carpets and set bright colour accents. Reason enough to take a closer look at the plants in our picture of the month. Read more

Picture of the month January 2022

A view into the interior of the gas chromatograph at the Battery LabFactory Braunschweig (BLB). Picture credits:
 Dominik Emmel, Daniel Schröder/ TU Braunschweig

For the researchers, the headspace GC/MS system shown in the Picture of the Month is an eagerly awaited addition for battery analysis. It was purchased for BLB diagnostic line. It will now make it possible to better understand battery aging and develop longer-lasting batteries. It is a system for the analysis of liquid electrolytes or soluble surface deposits in the components of a battery. Read more

You can find more pictures of the month in our magazine.