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Focus #74

Tomorrow's Traffic

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No time to die

Switzerland adopted the "Long-Term Climate Strategy" with the net zero goal by 2050. And Empa published research papers on the combustion engine. Does this fit together? Aren't combustion engines yesterday's technology?
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Quiet train tracks

An inconspicuous component under the tracks is a source of hope for a research team including Empa scientists to reduce railway noise for close-by residents.
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Editorial

Always on the move

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News from the lab

In brief

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Las Vegas passage

Ultra-fast capsules in vacuum tubes: All around the world, companies and research institutes are working on "Hyperloop" concepts. Swissloop Tunneling, a student initiative, is developing a drilling machine for underground transport tubes while "Swissloop" presents its new pod.
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In-flight diagnosis

A monitoring system for aircrafts detects minor damage during flight without the aircraft having to go into the hangar for maintenanceThis will reduce operating costs and increase safety at the same time.
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Empa Quarterly

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A coat for bananas

Empa and Lidl Switzerland have jointly developed a cellulose coating for fruit and vegetables. The novel coating is made from vegetable peels and helps to reduce packaging and food waste.


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Plastic snowfall

Scientists have analyzed the air pollution by plastic nanoparticles in the Alpes. The new study shows that the spread of nanoplastic through the air is a more widespread problem than previously thought. 

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Empa - The book

Beyond Materials

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Smart bandage

A bandage that releases medication as soon as an infection starts in a wound could treat injuries more efficiently. Empa researchers are working on polymer fibers that release antimicrobial drugs as soon as the environment heats up due to an infection.
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Building lean

Super-insulating materials such as aerogels are expensive. At the same time, they offer a powerful advantage: the thinner the insulation of a building, the larger its usable area. An Empa research team shows where the use of aerogel is already economically viable.
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co-operate

Campus Dübendorf

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Playing for change
As part of the Swiss Digital Day 2021, a new simulation game developed by Empa and partners immersed participants in problems, opportunities and quandaries  of climate neutrality – a lively inspiration for a sustainable future.
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Silence or speed?

Kurt Heutschi, a senior scientist in Empa's Acoustics / Noise Control lab, talks in an interview about speed limit 30 and explains what noise does and why individuals perceive sound so differently.

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The future of construction

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Teaching fungi
Empa scientists have succeeded at controlling the spread of fungi in native wood types. Recently, the soft rot fungus Kretzschmaria deusta were even taught to write some words, and just like first graders, they are still a bit shaky when writing particular letters.
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Focus: Energy revolution