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28 Current news of Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt


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Ultrastable materials investigated in depth

Measuring Thermal expansion at low temperatures for future space missions


Space holds numerous fascinating objects which we can only investigate by observing their radiation - even beyond the visible range. For space telescopes such as the European Space Agency's (ESA) infrared observatory Herschel, whose mission is to observe radiation in the far-infrared, cooling the ...


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The fundamental constants are still constant

Atomic clocks prove the stability of the mass ratio of protons to electrons


Are the fundamental constants really constant? Recent investigations carried out at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) have shown that one essential fundamental constant - namely the mass ratio of protons to electrons - can have changed only by a maximum of one part in a million over ...


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Photon recoil provides new insight into matter

QUEST researchers have demonstrated: New method of precision spectroscopy allows unprecedented accuracy


Quantum logic spectroscopy – which is closely linked with the name of the 2012 Nobel prize laureate, David J. Wineland – has been significantly extended: this new method is called "photon-recoil spectroscopy" (PRS). The potential of this method has been demonstrated by the research group led by ...


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Cosmology in the lab using laser-cooled ions

Taking a look back at the beginning of our universe: QUEST researchers at PTB generate and investigate symmetry breaking in ion Coulomb crystals


Scientists would love to know which forces created our universe some 14 billion years ago. How could – due to a breaking of symmetry – matter, and thus stars and galaxies, be created from an originally symmetrical universe in which the same conditions prevailed everywhere shortly after the Big ...


A big step towards the redefinition of the kelvin

PTB scientists determine a new value of the Boltzmann constant


Metrologists are measurement artists who are very precise – in the case of the Boltzmann constant up to the sixth decimal place. Whoever is able to determine it very exactly will cause a small revolution in the field of worldwide temperature measurement: The temperature unit will then no longer ...


Accurate measurement of radioactive thoron possible at last

PTB develops first primary standard worldwide for calibration of thoron measuring instruments


"Many people are now saying: 'Is it really that easy? Then why didn't anyone think of it a long time ago?' But you have to have the right idea at the right time," says Annette Röttger, physicist at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB), in a pleased way. Annette Röttger and her ...


The "new" kilogram is approaching

Avogadro constant determined with enriched silicon-28


A milestone in the international Avogadro project coordinated by the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) has been reached: With the aid of a single crystal of highly enriched 28Si, the Avogadro constant has now been measured as exactly as never before with a relative overall uncertainty ...


The "profile" of neon becomes more exact

PTB researchers determine the polarizability of neon with extreme accuracy - their procedure helps to revise theoretical models and is also of use for other elements


Small or large, quiet or communicative - the fundamental characteristics of a person form his/her behaviour. In principle, it is the same with chemical elements. And the better the "profile" of an element is known, the better its behaviour can be understood and controlled in practical ...


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Graphene: What projections and humps can be good for

Investigators from Hanover and Braunschweig measure how the electronic properties of graphene can be controlled with purposefully used roughnesses


At present, graphene probably is the most investigated new material system worldwide. Due to its astonishing mechanical, chemical and electronic properties, it promises manifold future applications – for example in microelectronics. The electrons in graphene are particularly movable and could, ...


Uniform analyses for clean drinking water in Europe

PTB scientists receive award for concept of comparability and traceability of water analyses


Clean water is a matter of survival for humans, particularly when it is used for drinking, cooking and for food manufacture. Therefore, the EU member countries have in several guidelines undertaken to guarantee their citizens sustainable clean drinking water. The requirement for this is, however, ...


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