what are they actually doing there?
In these pages, we would like to present the Paul Scherrer Institute to an interested public in a generally comprehensible way. Here you can learn more about the research topics we are working on and the unique large research facilities we are using to find answers to a variety of scientific questions.
Petrol, diesel, fuel cell or electric – which is the automobile of the future? A PSI study has examined the overall climate impact of various vehicle engines in use today and also projected it to the year 2040.
Making Switzerland's road traffic fit for the future calls for research, first and foremost. In the large-scale research facilities of PSI, chemists and engineers are investigating how to improve the efficiency of motors and reduce their emissions.
On 10 February, the ESA mission Solar Orbiter is scheduled to start. The Swiss X-ray telescope STIX will be launching too – with detectors developed at PSI.
PSI researchers simulate and model large-scale research facilities as well as experiments, for example, in the materials and biological sciences. Andreas Adelmann, head of PSI's Laboratory for Scientific Computing and Modelling, explains how they do it.
Traditionally, violins are varnished to protect them from humidity and other environmental influences. At PSI, a scientific team has investigated how different coatings affect the instrument. Under no circumstances, they found, should anyone try to do without varnish completely.
Researchers in PSI's Laboratory for Scientific Computing and Modelling solve the most complex problems through a combination of theory, modelling, and high-performance computing. With powerful computers, they simulate the smallest molecules or large-scale research facilities.
During investigations of tiny structures with large-scale research facilities, huge amounts of data accumulate at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI. This data is archived at the CSCS supercomputer centre in Lugano, and the researchers use the supercomputer there for their simulations and modelling.
The Swiss Light Source SLS is set to undergo an upgrade in the coming years: SLS 2.0. The renovation is made possible by the latest technologies and will create a large-scale research facility that will meet the needs of researchers for decades to come.
On 27 November 2019, at the recommendation of the ETH Board, the Federal Council has appointed Christian Rüegg as the new director of the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI. The 43-year-old will take over from Thierry Strässle, who has headed the institute on an interim basis since the beginning of the year. Mr Rüegg is currently head of the Neutrons and Muons Division at the PSI. He will take up his new position on 1 April 2020.
In the service of health, scientists at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI work with radionuclides and develop agents to treat cancer and to detect tumours. Their research provides support to hospitals and is of great interest to Swiss industry.
Radionuclides open up new options for treating cancer. Christian Rüegg, head of the Research with Neutrons and Muons Division at PSI, explains the significance of the Swiss Spallation Neutron Source SINQ at PSI.
At the neutron source SINQ, PSI researchers are producing special radionuclides that aid in the development of new and more effectively targeted cancer therapies. In this they collaborate closely with the clinics in the surrounding area.
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have developed a new process with which fibre-reinforced composite materials can be precisely X-rayed. This could help to develop better materials with novel properties.
It is reminiscent of a paper bird made with the help of the Japanese folding art origami: a microrobot that uses the force of magnetic fields to move. In the future, such small machines could be used, for example, in medical operations.
At the treatment stations of the Centre for Proton Therapy at PSI, tumours can be precisely irradiated from any direction. An interactive graphic explains how the protons get from the source to the body in order to trigger the elimination of tumour tissue.