News 2012

Dec 20, 2012 | EmpaNews 39 published
Industrialized countries face two problems: noise and airborne pollution. Empa researchers use facilities such as comprehensive 3D computer models and simulations to detect noise sources. The resulting noise maps then...
Dec 18, 2012 | TREASORES EU research project led by Empa
The EU research project, “TREASORES”, got under way on 1 November. The 14 project partners will receive some nine million euros over the next three years for the development of favourably priced production technologies...
14.12.2012 | Empa-Innovationspreis 2012 verliehen
Bereits zum 6. Mal verlieh die Empa kürzlich ihren mit 5000 Franken dotierten Innovationspreis. Die Preisträger - ein Team der Abteilung «Gebäudetechnologien» - Thomas Stahl, Samuel Brunner, Mark Zimmermann und Matthias...
Dec 8, 2012 | HITTEC – from waste heat to electricity
To convert waste heat from solid oxide fuel cells into electricity is the goal of the “HITTEC” project. Researchers from Empa, in a strategic partnership with Hexis AG, are developing a thermoelectric converter to make...
3 déc. 2012 | 47e Apéro scientifique sur le changement climatique en Suisse
Le climat est depuis des années un thème qui occupe les milieux politiques, économiques et scientifiques. A Doha, la conférence de l’ONU sur le climat qui vient de s’achever s’est efforcée de fixer des directives et des...
Nov 12, 2012 | EmpaNews 38 published
Solar modules made from silicon are too rigid for many applications – and they are often too expensive. Solar cells on flexible film are the solution, and are capable of generating power from sunlight much more cheaply....
Oct 26, 2012 | A molecular glance on solar water splitting
Hydrogen production by solar water splitting in photoelectrochemical cells (PEC) has long been considered the holy grail of sustainable energy research. Iron oxide is a promising electrode material. An international team...
22.10.2012 | Baufachtagung in Dübendorf
Die Jahrestagung Bauchemie beschäftigte sich dieses Jahr mit nachhaltigen Baustoffen der Zukunft. Mitte Oktober traf sich die Fachgruppe Bauchemie der Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker GDCh zum ersten Mal in der Schweiz,...
22.10.2012 | Langjährige Schadstoffmessung auf dem Jungfraujoch
Seit 40 Jahren misst die Empa im Sphinx-Observatorium auf dem Jungfraujoch Luftschadstoffe und hilft damit, die Luftqualität europaweit zu bestimmen und zu verbessern. Denn was auf dem Jungfraujoch detektiert wird,...
Oct 18, 2012 | International medical technology conference
Around 3,200 visitors from all over Europe were in Lucerne from 25 to 27 September for the successful premiere of the "World Medtech Forum". Empa was represented by two special "employees" and more than 20 exhibits from...
8 oct. 2012 | La balayeuse à hydrogène part de St-Gall pour se rendre à Berne
Depuis le printemps 2012 cette balayeuse est en action dans les rues de St-Gall – à l’entière satisfaction du service de la voierie de la ville. Maintenant ce véhicule s’est déplacé pour trois mois à Berne où le...
Oct 1, 2012 | Tuning the surface to accomodate future neighbouring cells
Cell biologists at Empa want to “tune” implants such that they can better carry out their tasks in the human body. The surface of the implant is the key to success. Together with the Fraunhofer Institute IFAM, the Empa...
Sep 24, 2012 | Textile pressure ulcer prevention
Immobile patients are in constant danger of developing pressure ulcers on the skin. Empa, Schoeller Medical and the Swiss Paraplegic Centre have worked together to develop a special sheet that is gentle on the skin and...
Sep 23, 2012 | New data on the biofuel ecobalance
First tops, then flops. That is one way of summing up the history of biofuels so far. A new study led by Empa gives an up-to-date picture of the ecobalance of various biofuels and their production processes. Only a few...
Sep 21, 2012 | VELUX FOUNDATION supports Empa research
All over the world the concept of artificial photosynthesis –the conversion of solar energy into a chemical energy storage medium such as hydrogen – is currently a hot research topic. The process involves the use of...
14.09.2012 | ETH-Bereich nennt Forschungsthemen für Energiewende
Der politisch beschlossene Ausstieg aus der Kernenergie und die Klimaziele der Schweiz erfordern einen grundlegenden Umbau des Schweizer Energiesystems. An der Empa werden deshalb zwei Forschungs- und...
11 sept. 2012 | Swiss Texnet «Innovation Day 2012» à l’Empa
Comment créer des innovations de manière ciblée? C’est à cette question qu’était consacré l’«Innovation Day» de Swiss Texnet, le réseau d’innovation textile suisse qui s’est déroulé à l’Empa.
Sep 5, 2012 | European elite support for Empa researcher
The European Research Council (ERC) recently awarded its ERC Starting Grants for the fifth time. One of the recipients is a young Empa scientist, Maksym Kovalenko, who also holds a professorship at the ETH Zürich. He has...
Sep 3, 2012 | Recognized expert on air pollution and environmental science
On 1st September, 2012, Dr. Brigitte Buchmann, takes over as newly appointed head of Empa’s Mobility, Energy and Environment Department. At the same time she also assumes her new role as new Member of the Board of...
Sep 3, 2012 | All-rounder with broad experience in support services
On September 1st Dr. Urs Leemann took over from Roland Knechtle as the head of Empa’s Support Department. His professional experience provides the optimal background to manage this multifaceted group.
Aug 30, 2012 | EU-Project with Empa participation trumps the competition
The “Winsmart” project convinced the EU experts. They judged the application for funding submitted by Empa researcher Matthias Koebel for the project – the development of "intelligent" windows for the buildings of...
Aug 20, 2012 | New aerogel-based plaster provides better insulation
Old buildings are beautiful – and hard to insulate. Empa and the Swiss render manufacturer Fixit AG together developed a new Aerogel-based plaster that provides twice the insulation of currently used insulating renders....
13.08.2012 | Beitrag im «Wirtschaftsmagazin»
Spitzenforschung und zahlreiche bahnbrechende Entwicklungen haben die Schweiz bekannt gemacht. Als kleines, rohstoffarmes Land steht die Schweiz im globalen Wettbewerb, sie muss ihre Stärken nutzen und sich künftigen...
Aug 6, 2012 | Risk re-classified for carcinogenic everyday substance
Since June 2012, it is official: The World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified diesel soot as a lung carcinogen. Artur Braun, a physicist at Empa and an X-ray spectroscopy expert, has made crucial contributions to...
26.07.2012 | EmpaNews 37 erschienen
Der Empa fällt für die Entwicklung innovativer medizintechnischer Produkte in der Schweiz eine wichtige Rolle zu. So forscht eine Abteilung in St.Gallen an neuartigen Implantatoberflächen, die das Einwachsen ins...
23 juil. 2012 | Camp d’été 2012 de l’Empa
C’est au mois de juillet qu’a eu lieu pour la neuvième fois déjà le camp d’été de l’Empa. Ce programme d’une semaine aide les parents à mieux concilier travail et famille durant les vacances scolaires. Les enfants de 7 à...
Jul 13, 2012 | Boosting European competitiveness in photovoltaics
With 13 partners from all over Europe, Empa, the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, has launched an EU-funded project to develop affordable, more efficient solar cells. With an overall...
Jul 6, 2012 | Life-cycle analyses in the energy sector
A study conducted by researchers from the ETH and Empa has come to the conclusion that large sized wind turbines produce "greener" electric power than small ones. Environmental benefits have also accrued as wind turbine...
Jun 20, 2012 | TA-SWISS study on localization technologies
My Smartphone knows where I am and my credit card company does too. My cellphone provider records the time and place of each telephone conversation I have, and my employer registers, when I am opening the door of my...
Jun 19, 2012 | KTI research project «EcoFactory»
In the KTI research project «EcoFactory», Empa researchers are collaborating with industrial partners, economists from the ETH Zurich and computer scientists to develop software with which companies can determine the...
Jun 14, 2012 | Empa solar cells at the Swiss Museum of Transport
«The Sun Moves» is a special exhibition at the “Verkehrshaus”, Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne, and last week it gained a new attraction – a showcase full of brightly colored, rotating solar cells which demonstrate...
Jun 7, 2012 | The Hydrogen Consultants
In Brugg, in Canton Aargau, post buses powered by fuel cells have been in operation since 2011. Empa staff researching in the fields of hydrogen and energy are involved in the project, acting as consultants during the...
Jun 7, 2012 | Hydrogen as a fuel
Hydrogen created using renewable energy sources is a form of power which could free us from our dependency on oil, gas and coal. When hydrogen is used to generate power it produces no CO2 as an unwanted byproduct....
May 29, 2012 | Fiber Society Meeting at Empa
Around 200 textile research professionals met at the end of May in St Gallen at the international Fiber Society Spring Conference to keep abreast of current trends in research and development in this field. The host...
May 14, 2012 | Functional working clothes
In order to test the new «smart» protective vest, an experimenter wearing one has jogged several kilometers on the treadmill in a climate-controlled chamber at Empa. During the jog he lost 544 grams in weight through...
Apr 25, 2012 | Innovations on the market
In June a monitoring system is becoming commercially available that will allow nursing staff to accurately record the mobility of bedridden persons. The system has been developed for the prevention of bedsores by...
10 avr. 2012 | Eliminatoires suisses pour la Physic-Worldcup
Pourquoi une balle de golf peut-elle rebondir hors du trou sur le green? C’est sur de tels problèmes que se sont affrontés à l’Empa à la fin du mois de mars lors du «Swiss Young Physicists‘ Tournament» des gymnasiennes...
Mar 27, 2012 | Wood Research Symposium
For 75 years Empa has been conducting research on all aspects relating to wood. Beginning with an investigation into the properties of various types of indigenous woods, today this has grown into a research area with...
Mar 19, 2012 | Next conferences to be held in China, India, Africa and Latin America
Against the backdrop of the multiple crises of the past years - financial, food and energy - the World Resources Forum announced today an expansion of its activities. On top of the successful bi-annual events in Davos,...
Mar 15, 2012 | «Best Paper»-Award
Every year, the editors of the scientific journal «Environmental Science & Technology», select the best papers among their peer-reviewed contributions, which numbered more than 1500 in 2011 alone. This year, a...
Mar 13, 2012 | Hydrogen-powered utility vehicle moves from Basel to St. Gallen
Since 2009, a hydrogen powered street cleaning vehicle has been undergoing testing on the streets of Basel. The project is intended to take hydrogen drives out of the laboratory and onto the streets in order to gain...
Feb 24, 2012 | CFC substitutes: good for the ozone layer, bad for the climate
The Montreal Protocol led to a global phase-out of most substances that deplete the ozone layer, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). A happy side-effect of the gradual ban of these products is that the Earth’s climate...
Feb 21, 2012 | Innovative incontinence briefs offer security in everyday life
Scientists at Empa have worked with the industrial partner Incosan GmbH to develop a multi-layer pad and special briefs to make daily life easier for people suffering from incontinence. The products recently came onto...
14 févr. 2012 | «Technology Briefing» la nanotechnologie dans le domaine cleantech
Comment une approche nanotechnologique permet-elle d’améliorer rapidement et efficacement des procédés et des produits dans le domaine cleantech actuellement en plein essor et de conquérir ainsi de nouveaux marchés? Une...
Feb 13, 2012 | UN report finds imports of waste electronics from Europe exacerbate E-waste problem in Africa
West Africa faces a rising tide of E-waste generated by domestic consumption of new and used electrical and electronic equipment, according to a new United Nations report. Domestic consumption makes up the majority (up...
Feb 13, 2012 | Startling results in synthetic chemistry presented in «Nature Chemistry»
Swiss scientists have created a minor sensation in synthetic chemistry. The team of scientists from ETH Zurich and Empa, the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, succeeded for the first time...
Jan 30, 2012 | «Technology Briefing» on the scarcity of raw materials
It is not just in laptop computers, mobile telephones and LED screens that scarce metals are to be found but also in solar cells, batteries for mobile technologies and many other similar applications. The rising demand...
Jan 23, 2012 | Empa-«Technology Briefing»: Fiber-reinforced composites
Automobiles made of steel suffer from a weight problem, and racing yachts made of steel have no chance of winning regattas. Fiber-reinforced composites offer an alternative which has spread rapidly in the transport...
Jan 15, 2012 | An anatomically designed seat developed for wheelchairs encourages user movement
Empa engineers, together with the firm «r going», have succeeded in developing an ergonomic seat for electric wheelchairs which encourages the user to move around frequently. True to the motto «life is movement » the aim...
Jan 10, 2012 | Planning of Empa’s building laboratory in full swing
Buildings are here to stay for a long time, but it is exactly this point that hinders experimentation on them. With its «NEST» building laboratory, Empa offers a way out of this dilemma. In NEST, only the supporting...
Jan 4, 2012 | 20 years of industrial computer tomography at Empa
Empa is one of the leading institutions in the field of industrial computer tomography as a result of its many years of experience. And it is not only technical components such as cylinder heads and batteries which find...