Department of Physics and Astronomy

Popular science presentation

Our research

The research at the Division of Material Physics is based on synthesis and analysis of modern materials, both for understanding fundamental physical phenomena and for contributing to further development of new technological applications where material properties, right down to the atomic level, are crucial. The core in the activity is in-house synthesis of materials and a continuous chain of subsequent experiments, from our own laboratories to large international facilities. Since we have control from the beginning to the end, we can find physical mechanisms behind the properties we observe, and thus gain tools for optimizing the materials further, e.g. through composition and placement of atoms. Examples include a wide range of topics: phase transitions both in systems of magnetic nanostructures and in atomically thin metallic layers that absorb hydrogen, fine-tuned strength of amorphous and crystalline magnetic materials that can be developed to sensors or permanent magnets, and mechanisms behind the water purification functionality of African moringa tree seeds.

Glimpses from the world of physics

Sciences opens up completely new perspectives of how things work and here we will share some fascinating glimpses into the world of physics.

The first odyssey is dedicated to the properties and use of neutrons. Enjoy!

When the smallest becomes the largest

neutrons the movie
Illustrator: Bjarne Heuser.

Watch the movie Neutronia here: Neutronia at youtube

How it works: Water purification with Moringa seeds

In many countries there is still a shortage of clean water, which is essential for life. Also in industrialized countries a "chemical free" water purification process is of interest for e.g. manufacturing.

Within one of our research progress, involving researchers from several countries, we investigated how seeds from the Moringa oleifera tree can be used for water purification. The seeds contain a protein that makes impurities flocculate (gather into larger lumps), and these flocs (lumps) can then be removed from the water.