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Physics - Innovation - 01.12.2022
Photonics chip allows light amplification
Photonics chip allows light amplification
Scientists at EPFL have developed photonic integrated circuits that demonstrated a new principle of light amplification on a silicon chip. It can be employed for optical signals like those used in Lidar, trans-oceanic fiber amplifiers or in data center telecommunications. The ability to achieve quantum-limited amplification of optical signals contained in optical fibers is arguably among the most important technological advances that are underlying our modern information society.

Innovation - Environment - 22.11.2022
The Swiss water turnaround: wait and see or take a proactive approach?
The Swiss water turnaround: wait and see or take a proactive approach?
New technologies in the water sector can contribute to the flexible and sustainable development of urban water management and the sustainable utilisation of water as a resource. In a recent article in the journal Aqua & Gas, a team of researchers from the aquatic research institute Eawag shows what opportunities and risks are associated with this.

Health - Innovation - 18.11.2022
Watching the metabolism at work
Watching the metabolism at work
Researchers from ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich are taking magnetic resonance imaging a step further. With their new method, they can visualise metabolic processes in the body. Their objective is to improve the future diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has become an indispensable part of medicine.

Health - Innovation - 28.10.2022
A new device for early diagnosis of degenerative eye disorders
A new device for early diagnosis of degenerative eye disorders
Researchers at an EPFL lab have developed an ophthalmological device that can be used to diagnose some degenerative eye disorders long before the onset of the first symptoms. In early clinical trials, the prototype was shown to produce images with a sufficient degree of precision in just five seconds.

Physics - Innovation - 24.10.2022
Miniaturized infrared detectors
Miniaturized infrared detectors
Extreme miniaturization of infrared (IR) detectors is critical for their integration into next-generation consumer electronics, wearables and ultra-small satellites. Thus far, however, IR detectors have relied on bulky (and expensive) materials and technologies. A team of scientists lead by Empa researcher Ivan Shorubalko now succeeded in developing a cost-effective miniaturization process for IR spectrometers based on a quantum dot photodetector, which can be integrated on a single chip, as they report in Nature Photonics.

Art and Design - Innovation - 21.10.2022
Dürer goes digital
Dürer goes digital
The Graphische Sammlung ETH Zürich has digitised over 50,000 artworks and made them freely accessible. Linda Schädler, Head of the Graphische Sammlung, explains in an interview why she hopes to do the same with the remaining 110,000. Ms Schädler, ETH-s collection of prints and drawings has now digitised 50,000 of its artworks.

Health - Innovation - 21.10.2022
Flexible surgical needle offers enhanced precision
Flexible surgical needle offers enhanced precision
Engineers from EPFL and the University of Strasbourg have developed an innovative surgical needle whose trajectory can be corrected on the fly, thanks to a flexible tip controlled with a simple button. Intended for use in image-guided surgery, the needle offers greater precision in surgeon's movements and reduces the risk for patients.

Health - Innovation - 06.10.2022
Researchers deliver science for humanitarian action
Researchers deliver science for humanitarian action
Using innovative technologies and scientific expertise to help people in need is the goal of the Engineering for Humanitarian Action initiative launched by the ICRC, ETH Zurich and EPFL in 2020. Six of the projects are already offering results for tangible improvements for the ICRC. "By highlighting key sustainability principles in a simple way, the tool will help us make more informed decisions when designing our construction projects," says ICRC's Pavlos Tamvakis.

Innovation - Economics / Business - 05.10.2022
Lightweight, ultra-connected seaborne containers
Lightweight, ultra-connected seaborne containers
The composite containers developed by AELER, an EPFL startup, deliver better performance across the board: they're stronger, have a bigger payload, are better insulated, allow for enhanced tracking and can help cut carbon emissions.

Materials Science - Innovation - 03.10.2022
Researchers want to make salt printing marketable
Researchers want to make salt printing marketable
Materials scientists Nicole Kleger and Simona Fehlmann have developed a 3D printing process for creating salt templates that they can fill with other materials. One area of application is the creation of highly porous lightweight metal components. The two Pioneer Fellows are now trying to transfer this process to industry.

Physics - Innovation - 21.09.2022
Time-reversal methods can make power transformers more reliable
Time-reversal methods can make power transformers more reliable
Engineers at EPFL's Electromagnetic Compatibility Laboratory have developed a revolutionary method for detecting and locating partial discharges, which disrupt the functioning of power transformers. Transformers play a central role in power distribution systems, making it possible to carry electric power over long distances with minimal risk and losses.

Innovation - Microtechnics - 21.09.2022
A swarm of 3D printing drones for construction and repair
A swarm of 3D printing drones for construction and repair
An international research team led by drone expert Mirko Kovac of Empa and Imperial College London has taken bees as a model to develop a swarm of cooperative, 3D-printing drones. Under human control, these flying robots work as a team to print 3D materials for building or repairing structures while flying, as the scientists report in the cover story of the latest issue of Nature.

Health - Innovation - 19.09.2022
Bone fragility: EU green light for new diagnostic tool
Bone fragility: EU green light for new diagnostic tool
A new device for diagnosing bone fragility invented by the HUG and the UNIGE has been approved for marketing in the European Economic Area and Switzerland. A new device for diagnosing bone fragility invented by the University Hospitals of Geneva (HUG) and the University of Geneva has been approved for marketing in the European Economic Area and Switzerland.

Health - Innovation - 01.09.2022
Technological advances in cancer therapy
Technological advances in cancer therapy
Researchers from the University of Bern and Inselspital provide an overview of the latest technologies in precision oncology. Translating these into clinical application is still a major challenge. With research projects, the Bern Center for Precision Medicine (BCPM) contributes to bringing technological progress to the patient.

Physics - Innovation - 24.08.2022
New quantum technology combines free electrons and photons
New quantum technology combines free electrons and photons
Scientists from EPFL, the Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences and the University of Göttingen have successfully created electron-photon pairs for the first time in a controlled way, using integrated photonic circuits on a chip. Using a new technique, they could precisely detect the involved particles.

Transport - Innovation - 17.08.2022
How do pedestrians react to automated vehicles?
How do pedestrians react to automated vehicles?
Empa, together with EBP and Fussverkehr Schweiz, analyzed in spring 2022 in Thalwil (ZH) how pedestrians react to automated vehicles. The automated parking assistant that had been used is the first system approved in Switzerland that moves a vehicle without a person sitting in it. The findings of the research project, which was co-financed by AXA's Foundation for Prevention, create an important basis for prevention measures and design principles for sustainable road spaces.

Environment - Innovation - 26.07.2022
Don't attack the Energy Strategy with simplified assumptions
Don’t attack the Energy Strategy with simplified assumptions
An ETH risk researcher has concluded that Energy Strategy 2050 doesn't work. The Energy Science Center at ETH Zurich disagrees: extensive research shows that the energy transition is feasible and makes sense, writes Gabriela Hug together with her ESC colleagues. Earlier this month, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung newspaper reported that huge dependence on electricity imports in winter was imminent if the Swiss federal government went through with the Energy Strategy including nuclear phase-out.

Health - Innovation - 14.07.2022
The Right Environment for Fighting Cancer
The Right Environment for Fighting Cancer
Cancer immunotherapy is a successful form of treatment in oncology, but it doesn't work for every patient. One problem may be the lack of a specific type of immune cell in the tumor, researchers in the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel have found. The researchers were able to partially replace the cell's function using a signaling molecule.

Innovation - Transport - 13.07.2022
Monitoring city mobility from the skies
Monitoring city mobility from the skies
Researchers have used swarms of drones to measure city traffic with unprecedented accuracy and precision. Algorithms are then used to identify sources of traffic jams and recommend solutions to alleviate traffic problems. Given the wealth of modern technology available - roadside cameras, big-data algorithms, Bluetooth and RFID connections, and smartphones in every pocket - transportation engineers should be able to accurately measure and forecast city traffic.

Environment - Innovation - 07.07.2022
«A holistic view of the catchment area is needed»
«A holistic view of the catchment area is needed»
On 15 September, after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, an Eawag Info Day will be held once again, dedicated to new technologies for monitoring surface waters. Physicist Damien Bouffard, Head of the Aquatic Physics Group at Eawag, was involved in its conception and explains in an interview what new opportunities and challenges these technologies bring.