The Department of Quantum Matter Physics is very involved in transferring technologies from its laboratories to industry, as its research activities in understanding and developing quantum materials and devices have a strong potential for applications.
The number of collaborations with industrial partners has grown continuously. Through many important CTI collaboration projects, DQMP researchers are fostering innovation and working closely with industry to bring new technologies to the market. With this association, companies are interested in testing new materials, and training people in modern fields of material science and technology.
During these years, the DQMP has facilitated the access to sophisticated equipment and to engineers with practical experience in prototype development and industrial experience in order to explore technological innovation, removing risks at early stages of applied R&D projects for the industry. If applied to specific industrial challenges, the use of such scientific equipment and competences may trigger new perspectives for industrial application.
The DQMP has been exploring the opportunity to introduce the novel materials at the focus of fundamental studies into industrial applications in fields as diverse as high-end instrumentation, micro- and nanoelectronics, energy production and storage, sensors and actuators, adaptive neutron supermirrors, advanced coatings, metallurgy and thin films, microtechnology, tool machining, biomedical technology, fine watchmaking, new materials processing, and many more.
The KTT has given very satisfactory results; they can be highlighted by three concrete examples: the R&D work on superconducting wires, the development of a new marking technology for the watch, medical and aerospace industries, and the implementation of an innovative coating technology for the tool machine industry. Each of these cases exploits competencies generated by basic-research oriented efforts.
–The R&D work on superconducting wires led to major improvements in the performance of classic superconductors; wires of new generation superconductors have reached record values of current carrying capacity. The chain of competencies required to elaborate and characterize a superconducting wire contains a number of modules encapsulating particular skills. By unfolding that basic research value chain, taking advantage of each segment of expertise and matching the different competencies to particular applications, we have been able to expand the outreach of technology transfer activities.
–The development of a new marking technology for the watch, medical and aerospace industries has been inspired from STM equipment and expertise. By combining surface science and nanotechnology, the developed prototype ‘writes’ patterns of microscopy structures made of various surface alloys on the surface of metal parts.
–The implementation of an innovative coating technology for the tool machine industry : By combining surface science tools, metallurgy and X-Ray fluorescence analysis this KTT project has supported the company to secure his strategy market with key customers.
Moreover, the DQMP is part of the Laboratory of Advanced Technology (LTA) which valorizes the expertise and the sophisticated equipment of the University of Geneva and the HES-SO Genève in collaborative outreach towards industry. It allows individual initiatives – industrial or academic – to benefit from the know-how and the exceptional technology available in these two institutions in order to foster technological innovation.
The Geneva Creativity Center (GCC) – an initiative of MaNEP NCCR joined by UNIGE, hepia and the Geneva Office for the Promotion of Industries – strives to bring academic and industrial researchers and promoters together to discuss their needs and ideas in order to develop innovative projects.
The DQMP also collaborates with Unitec, the technology transfer office of UNIGE, which plays an instrumental role in transferring technologies from the laboratory towards the marketplace by working with start-up companies as well as existing companies in Switzerland, Europe and the rest of the world.
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