Research of the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM) is aimed at understanding, designing and controlling the functioning of molecules and materials. (Bio)chemists and physicists work closely together on structures that are often nature inspired. They design, synthesize and investigate materials, grown bottom up from the atomic scale.
Materials reveal their properties in ‘natural’ environments, as well as under extreme conditions of temperatures and pressures. Furthermore, quantum properties are being unveiled and explored.
Research of the IMM is focused in three closely connected research themes, Structure and Dynamics of Molecules, Chemistry of Complex Systems and Spectroscopy of Quantum Materials, supported by the unique research facilities.
Theme 1: Structure and Dynamics of Molecules
This research theme unravels the interactions between atoms, ions, molecules, clusters and surfaces by applying advanced spectroscopic techniques. In this way the IMM builds on an ab initio understanding of molecular structures.
Theme 2: Chemistry of Complex Systems
Inspired by the complexity of living cells, this research theme involves the design, synthesis and characterisation of (bio)molecules and (bio)molecular assemblies. The goal is to master chemical processes in the cell, unravel and construct chemical interaction networks, and study complexity and functions that emerge in systems chemistry.
Theme 3: Spectroscopy of Quantum Materials
The goal of this theme is to understand and develop new materials and concepts based on collective, emergent quantum effects and manipulate them beyond thermal equilibrium. An overarching goal is to address how interactions in quantum materials can be used for energy-efficient information technology. We focus on the properties of matter dominated by interactions between quantum particles, quantum coherence and quantum correlations and topology.
Impact in new fields
The IMM has both the expertise and infrastructure to make a strong impact in the new emerging fields within physics and chemistry. The broad research field ranges from bio-organic to quantum chemistry, from applied material science to the study of new phases of matter, from the theory of condensed matter to atomic scale probing and manipulation. We actively explore and promote the interaction with industry and the application of our (fundamental) research ranging from new materials in the fields of electronics, photonics, data storage and medicine.