Projects in RUBION

Adsorption of model surfactants on subsoil samples

Human Environmental Research - Stumpe, Institute of Geographie, Bergische Universität Wuppertal

Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are known to have adverse effects on human health and the environment. Thus, an effective risk assessment with concern on POP adsorption potential in the soil compartment is of high interest. The objective of our study was to develop a reliable, rapid and low-cost method which is able to predict the adsorption of two model POPs, 4-n-nonylphenol (NP) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), in soil samples based on spectral information (MIR) and partial least-square analyses (PLSR). For the model development 96 top- as well as subsoils were used. To characterize the composition of the samples, they were analyzed for particle size distribution, manganese and iron oxide concentration, organic carbon content (SOC), pH and the soil surface area. The KD-values for NP and PFOA were calculated in batch experiments.

Bacterial iron acquisition

Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

We investigate bacterial iron acquisition, the role of siderophores, and the role of ionophores.

Funded by: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Bismuth donor Spins in Silicon for Quantum Computing

Quantronics, CEA Saclay, Université Paris-Saclay

Our research group is expert in Hybrid Quantum Devices where spins in solids are coupled to superconducting quantum circuits. We use these devices for quantum computing applications; in particular we develop spin-based quantum memories for microwave photons. For this application, we need implantation of Bismuth atoms in a silicon substrate. The Bismuth atoms when cooled at low temperature form donors, whose electron spin has a very long coherence time. Therefore, in this project, we will provide silicon substrates (isotopically enriched in the nuclear-spin-free Si28 isotope), and we request implantation of bismuth ions from Rubion.

Characterisation of Membrane ATPases

Molecular Biochemistry, Faculty of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Rhur University Bochum

ATPases are integral membrane proteins that play a pivotal role in cell homeostasis by pumping substrates as diverse as ions and lipids. Although several members of this group are well-studied, many molecular details involved in their working mechanism and regulation on the molecular level still remain unsolved. In combination with transporter mutants we expect to gain a molecular understanding of how ATP, pH, the ion concentration, and the lipid environment regulate these transporters.

Characterization of funcional coatings

Analytical Chemistry — Biointerfaces, Faculty for Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruhr-University Bochum

The chemistry of organic, functional coatings will quantitatively be analyzed. This concerns coatings prepared by grafting from as well as by grafting to approaches. Also polymer coatings with different crosslinking mechanisms will be investigated by element sensitive chemical analysis. The coatings are at a later stage tested in our research group regarding their low-fouling properties and the results from surface analysis will be correlated to protein attachment and biofouling assays.

Development of a Combined Stimulated Emission Depletion and Scanning Ion Conductance Microscope

Nanoscopy, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

This project aims a combining a Stimulated Emission Depletion (STED) and a Scanning Ion Conductance Microscope (SICM) to allow simultaneous, correlated recording of the cellular topography and a protein distribution in living cells with diffraction-unlimited resolution.

Funded by: DFG

Development of STED and SICM instruments

Nanoscopy, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

This long-term project aims at developing and optimizing our STED and SICM instrument.

Funded by: DFG

Diffusion of H bearing species in silicate glasses at low temperatures - development of a new experimental technique

Group of Hans-Werner Becker, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

The transport of H in glasses at relatively low temperatures (below 200 °C) is relevant for a number of applications such as obisidian dating of archaeological artefacts, palaeoclimate studies, storage of high level nuclear waste and many more. We have developed several new experimental aspects, and in particular (a) the ability to produce H-bearing amorphous thin films to act as a source of H without the presence of free H2O, and (b) the ability to measure low concentrations of H, independent of the speciation, with a high spatial resolution on the nanometer scale. In this project it is intended to use these developments to explore the diffusion of H-bearing species at conditions that have been inaccessible so far. A specific goal is to characterize the compositional dependence of H-diffusion at these conditions and understand the change of diffusion mechanism that leads to a different behaviour from those observed at higher temperatures.

Funded by: DFG, DFG

Diffusion of hyrogen in nominally anhydrous minerals

Group of Hans-Werner Becker, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

The continuous improvement of analytical techniques led to the finding that minerals, which were once thought to be water-free (nominally anhydrous minerals), can indeed incorporate substantial amounts of water in their atomic structure. This observation changed fundamental aspects of our geodynamic models. The detection of water in minerals that are part of mantle xenoliths is one example. This information is interpreted to be evidence for a "wet mantle". To better understand the entity of the geologic water cycle in our earth it is necessary to quantify the transport rates of hydrogen in various phases in dependence of intensive variable (e.g. temperature). In this project we study the diffusion of hydrogen in minerals specifically at low temperatures using hydrogen implantation and NRRA.

Fabrication of PbV centers in diamond

Low-temperature spectroscopy, Institute for Quantum Optics, Ulm University

Single group-IV defects in diamond are attractive spin qubits with outstanding optical properties, which make them unique for the realization of efficient long-distance entanglement protocols. Particularly, silicon-vacancy (SiV) and germanium-vacancy (GeV) defects are spectrally stable and possess a high Debye-Waller factor (~70%). However, SiV and GeV have a short spin coherence time at 2 K and require cooling to a few tens of millikelvin to prolong it. On the other hand, group-IV defects based on heavier elements Sn and Pb are expected to have long spin coherence time already at 2 K, preserving nearly ideal optical properties. Therefore, engineering these defects is a highly desirable task. In this project, we plan to fabricate the PbV defects in diamond using the implantation of lead ions at different energies and investigate their optical and electron spin properties.

Focused ion beam implantation of rare earth elements in semiconductor nanostructures

Chair for Applied Solid State Physics, Faculty for Physics and Astronomics, Ruhr-University Bochum

The project addresses the focused ion beam implantation of metal ions from the rare earth group into semiconductor nanostructures. In particular, we focus on the incorporation of erbium ions (Er3+) into gallium arsenide (GaAs). The optical transitions of the erbium should lead to an emission of electro-magnetic radiation at a wavelength of 1.54 µm. To better quantify the optical investigation of this emission, it is crucial to qualitatively and quantitatively verify the incorporation of the erbium into GaAs after implantation. For this purpose, highly sensitive analytical methods will be used at RUBION. Among other methods, elemental analyses will be carried out with the help of PIXE. Other research in this field has shown that the luminescence of erbium can be increased by additional implantation of further elements. For this purpose, oxygen is implanted over the surface of the GaAs:Er samples and the luminescence is then investigated.

Functional metal oxides for sensor applications (FunALD)

Inorganic Materials Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruhr University Bochum

Fabricating metal oxide based nanostructures for their application in gas phase sensors. The project covers precursor development and its evaluation for thin film deposition via thermal and plasma assisted atomic layer deposition

High-energy-ion-implantation

Ion implantation for research and industry, RUBION / rubitec GmbH, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

In the department RUBION ion-beams, in the area of the industrial implantation, ion irradiations in the MeV range are carried out on behalf of customers in cooperation with our partner, the rubitec GmbH. There is a wide range of different ions available. The available energy and dose range depends on the respective species and the wafer size of our customers. The possibilities are determined by us depending on the application for each customer on request. In this field we are certified according to DIN EN ISO 9001: 2015 !

Hydrogen Dynamics in Elementary Reactions on Molybdenum sulfide and carbide

Physical Chemistry, FB 8, Westphalian University of Applied Sciences

Molybdenum Compunds, MoS2 and Mo(2)C are promising new catalysts for electrochemical applications, e.g. water electrolysers. It is planned to study several aspects of hydrogen dynamics in these materials using neutron scattering (ILL Grenoble), electrochemical spectroscopy (WH Recklinghausen) and nuclear reaction analysis (present proposal): hydrogen sorption, fast hydrogen diffusion under reaction conditions, hydrogen modes and substrate phonons as well as ortho-para-conversion of hydrogen on cold catalyst surfaces. Model systems of bulk materials, pure powder samples and electrochemical electrodes will be used. The expected results of these studies are diffusion parameters (binding sites, pathways, activation energies), and key parameters of structure and dynamics of the active surface. Since hydrogen sorption and the motion of several hydrogen species are involved, hydrogen concentrations profiles are required for the full interpretation of the neutron scattering results.

Funded by: Institut Laue-Langevin, Doktorandenstipendium

Implantation of hydrogen in olivine (Yale University, Group Shun-ichiro Karato)

Group of Hans-Werner Becker, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Space weathering involves solar wind implantation of elements, such as hydrogen, in planetary materials. Thus, it is crucial to study this process in order to evaluate its impact on the hydrogen budget of planetary bodies. We implant different amounts of hydrogen (fluences) in olivine at different energies to study at which fluence hydrogen saturation in this mineral is attained. This project is a collaboration with Shun-ichiro Karato, Jiang Zhenting, and Qinting Jiang of the Yale University.

NRRA analysis of hydrogen in natural garnet samples as a calibration for FTIR spectroscopy (University Bern, Group Jörg Hermann)

Group of Hans-Werner Becker, RUBION, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy is a frequently used technique for measuring water species in geological materials. However, the method has to be calibrated for each type of mineral or glass. We use the "standard-free" NRRA technique to analyse hydrogen depth profiles, which can then be used to calibrate methods such as FTIR or SIMS. This project is a collaboration with Prof. Jörg Hermann and Julien Reynes of the Geological Department of the University Bern.

Prekursor incorporation experiments

Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Using radiolabeled precursors in incorporation experiments, we analyze the antibacterial mechanism of action.

Funded by: BMBF, NIH

Producing Ti-bearing quartz by ion-implantation for use as secondary standard in electron microprobe analysis

Diffusion in Minerals and Melts, Institut fuer Geologie, Mineralogie und Geophysik, Ruhr Universitaet Bochum

The amount of Ti incorporated in quartz (SiO2) is dependent on the temperature of formation. Therefore, Ti in quartz from natural rocks can be used as a geothermometer. Electron microprobe analysis can be used to quantify the amount of Ti in quartz, but as a low accuracy of such measurements would result in erroneous temperature estimates, secondary quartz standards with known Ti contents are needed. Such standards do not yet exist. This project is aimed at producing six standards with defined Ti content (10 μg g-1, 50 μg g-1, 100 μg g-1, 250 μg g-1, 500 μg g-1, and 1000 μg g-1) by means of ion implantation. Rutherford Backscattering Spectrometry should be used for chemical depth profiling before homogenizing the newly produced materials by heating. Finally, these secondary standard materials will be used for data verification during microprobe measurements of high-temperature metamorphic rocks.

Proteomic response of bacteria

Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

We use pulse-labeling to investigate the proteins newly synthesized in response to stress, e.g. antibiotic treatment.

Funded by: BMBF, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, National Institutes of Health, EFRE, Investing in your future, NRW, DAAD

Qualitative and quantitative analysis of major and trace elements by PIXE

Particle Induced X-ray Emission (PIXE), RUBION, Ruhr University Bochum

PIXE technique is applied for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of major and trace elements in various kinds of samples, such as in minerals, glasses, alloys etc. The concentrations of elements from Si up to U can be determined in samples of different structures, i.e. in homogeneous thin or thick samples, as well as in layered ones. The sensitivity of PIXE can reach levels of the order of a few parts per million (ppm).

Quantification of Au in Polyaniline with embedded atomic Au clusters

Atomic Metals, Institute of Microsystems Technology, Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg

PANI/Au atomic metal clusters are prepared by the method of Jonke et al. [1]. It was shown before that these structures exhibit the odd/even effects characteristic of atomic Au clusters in the range of one to six Au atoms. In order to understand the formation mechanism, extensive characterization by RBS is required. [1] Jonke et al 2012 J. Electrochem. Soc. 159 P40

Rare-earth-based single photon sources for quantum telecommunication

Rare Earths, 3rd Institute of Physics, University of Stuttgart

The project aims at the realization of single photon sources in the telecom wavelength regime, based on single rare-earth ions (like erbium or ytterbium) precisely doped into optical crystals by means of ion implantation (up to 200nm below the surface). The main advantage of the proposed single photon sources are their true single photon emission, their fourier-limited linewidth and the ability to store emitted photons directly in a medium based on rare-earth ions (straight forward interfacing). The typically low fluorescent signal of single erbium/ytterbium ions can be boosted by orders of magnitude through coupling them to optical resonators (fabricated from thin film lithium niobate) with high Q factors. The single photon source behaviour will be assessed by the indistinguishability of the emitted photons in a Hong-Ou-Mandel experiment.

Funded by: European Commission

RBS measurements to identify the composition and thickness of targets for accelerator experiments

Zilges, Institute for Nuclear Physics, University of Cologne

At the Tandem Accelerator Laboratory of the University of Cologne experiments ar performed in the fields of Nuclear Structure and Nuclear Astrophysics. For the data analysis it is mandatory to know the exact composition and thickness of the targets. From previous measurements we know that the RBS setup ab RUBION is ideally suited for such studies.

Funded by: DFG

Structural and functional analyses on mating-type locus-encoded transcription factors of Penicillium species.

Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine und Molekulare Botanik, Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine und Molekulare Botanik, Ruhr-Universität

The genus Penicillium represents a large number of important fungal species, which have significance for applied microbiology. However, little is known about their developmental features related to sexual reproduction. Furthermore, the observation that the regulatory function of mating-type locus (MAT)-encoded transcription factors (TFs) extends far beyond the control of sexual processes points to their particular biotechnological relevance. Therefore, the analysis of MAT-controlled cellular and developmental functions represents a promising research approach. Beyond the characterization of MAT TFs, gene regulatory networks controlled by MAT proteins in different Penicillium species are of interest. We intend to gain insight into the functional and mechanistic properties of MAT-TFs in order to understand their cooperative interaction with DNA and other proteins. Therefore, we will address the following questions: a.) What factors do MAT-TFs interact with at the protein level? and b.) What is the X-ray structu

Surface chemical characterization of ALD and CVD deposited thin films

Inorganic Materials Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruhr University Bochum

This project supports the other ongoing RUBION-projects of RUB's IMC group. Complementary to the RBS/NRA project, selected thin films are subjected to XPS and AES analysis to gain insights into their surface chemical composition.

Transport and insertion mechanisms of plastid-encoded thylakoid membrane proteins

Molecular biology of plant organelles, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Ruhr-University Bochum

The biogenesis of photosynthetic protein complexes of the chloroplast thylakoid membrane requires highly specific protein sorting, integration and assembly mechanisms of nucleus as well as plastid encoded subunits. Central steps in the biogenesis of photosystem II (PS II) are the cotranslational insertion of the plastid encoded D1 protein into the thylakoid membrane and its subsequent assembly into functional PS II. We recently established a technique to partially reconstitute the cotranslational insertion of [35S]-D1 using a homologous in vitro translation system derived from pea chloroplasts. The aims of this proposal are (I) to identify novel components involved in cotranslational protein insertion in thylakoid membranes, (II) to dissect the protein contacts of the nascent D1 chain during translation and insertion and (III) to get insight into the mechanisms underlying targeting and attachment of ribosome-nascent chain complexes to the thylakoid membrane.

Funded by: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Uptake, efflux and conversion of radiolabelled substrates by cells and plant organs

Molecular Genetics and Physiology of Plants, Molecular Genetics and Physiology of Plants, Ruhr University Bochum

We will quantify uptake rates of radioisotopes of various mineral nutrients and/or their toxic analogues into roots of Arabidopsis or into plant gene-expressing cells. We will measure the incorporation of radiolabelled organic and inorganic substrates into endogenous metabolites and/or macromolecules of plant cells, organs and/or cells of heterologous expression systems. We will localize various elements of interest in sections of plant tissues by imaging using Particle Induced X-Ray Emission (PIXE) combined with Rutherford Backscattering Spectrometry (RBS) comparatively between wild type and mutant/transgenic plants. We will conduct live cell imaging of plant cells expressing suitably marker proteins using the Olympus IX 81 live cell imaging microscope with the goal of determining protein localization and its dynamics. It is possible that it might be necessary to apply STED super-resolution fluorescence imaging to answer our research questions.

Using infrastructure of the Bandow lab

Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

This "project" covers a conglomerate of activities that entail the use of infrastructure of the Bandow lab that is located at RUBION, but does not entail work with unstable isotopes.