Nanoscopic Physics


The world at the nanoscale obeys laws that defy common intuition : quantum mechanics plays a prominent role, both for experimental investigations and theoretical simulations.  The researchers in the Nanoscopic physics division (NAPS) of the Institute of Condensed Matter and Nanoscience explore various aspects of this enchanted world, from atoms, photons and ions to nanoscale devices, through the crystalline state and molecules. 
"There is plenty of room at the bottom" (R. Feynman).

Research topics

Technical expertise

A variety of technical expertise related to physics at the nanoscale is available in NAPS : optical systems, scanning probes, systems for low and ultra-low temperature experiments, nanofabrication tools.
This remarkable expertise is made available to external scientists or industrial companies.
The optical techniques are grouped in the LAS&O platform.

In case you would want to benefit from the expertise associated to one of the techniques mentioned below, please contact our secretary who will redirect you to the appropriate person: Mrs. Laurence Lenoir (+32 (0)10 473256)

Optical expertise and tools

The optical techniques are grouped in the LAS&O platform.  In short :

  • Tunable high energy nanosecond laser chain (IR to UV)
  • Supercontinuum laser source
  • DPSS laser
  • Fast cameras
  • NIR & visible spectrometers
  • Interferometer
  • OCT setup
  • Deflectometer
  • Optical & opti-mechanisal equipment
  • Data acquisition system
  • Optical tables with pneumatic isolation
  • Expertise for the realisation of optical devices (interferometers, deflectometer, electro-optic sampling, microscopy ...)

Low and ultra-low temperature experiments

  • pumped 3He system (T > 300 mK), including a 9/11 T superconducting magnet
  • 3He/4He dilution refrigerator (T > 30 mK), including a 15/17 T superconducting magnet, with a scanning probe microscope inside.
  • table-top Montana instrument optical cryostat (T> 3K), wired for electronic transport experiments and with a scanning probe microscope inside.
  • various experimental setups for electrical and thermal transport measurements on nanodevices from room temperature down to 30 mK

Nanofabrication (part of the WINFAB platform)

  • Electron beam nanolithography
  • 2D crystal exfoliation and synthesis
  • van der Waals heterostructure (dry transfer)

Scanning probe microscopy

Ultra-low temperature atomic force microscope (AFM), which can be operated in various electrical modes : SGM, EFM, KFM,...

Atomic and Molecular Physics

  • Merged ion-ion and atom-atom beam set up for absolute determination of charge exchange and reactive scattering cross sections. Pulsed laser resonance enhanced ionization of atoms and molecules. In-flight analysis of internal excitation of molecular ions. Ion beam trap for spectroscopy of transient ionic species
  • Crossed Electron-Ion beam set up for the absolute determination of ionization and dissociation cross sections.