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Collaborative Research Centres / Transregional (Coordination)

SFB/TR 87: Pulsed High Power Plasmas for the Synthesis of Nanostructured Functional Layers

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With Plasmas to Form New Materials

The path to new materials, e.g. for storage media for mobile phones, PCs, but also for future energy systems, goes via plasma technology. In the Research Department “Plasmas with Complex Interactions”, researchers from information technology, physics and mechanical engineering are researching fundamental questions of plasma physics from the atom in the gaseous phase down to performance characteristics of coated material surfaces.

Plasma can be used to coat materials and thus protect them from wear. Such coatings can also increase the storage capacities of computers and thus also make mobile phones smaller. The diverse properties and fields of use of plasma offer the opportunity to develop innovative materials.

The Collaborative Research Centre investigates how plasma behaves on certain surfaces and which interactions result from this. The central topic in Bochum are what are called pulsed plasmas, which are partially supported by magnetic fields. They could be important for synthesising intelligent coating systems in the future.


SFB/TR 103: From atom to turbine blade – scientific foundations for a new generation of monocrystalline superalloys

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Gas Turbines of Tomorrow

Monocrystalline turbine blades in gas turbines are as indispensable for keeping modern society moving as they are for providing a steady, sustainable supply of electricity. The key materials for these turbine blades are so-called monocrystalline superalloys – alloys based on nickel and cobalt.

In order to achieve both a higher degree of efficiency and greater sustainability with these superalloys, the collaborative research centre project SFB/Transregio 103 “From atom to turbine blade – scientific foundations for a new generation of monocrystalline superalloys” is investigating the basis for a new monocrystalline technology.

Fundamental questions lie at centre of the research – for example, questions concerning which structural formation processes occur during production using vacuum investment casting or additive manufacturing, and how microstructures withstand high-temperature mechanical stress. SFB/TR 103 brings together researchers from the fields of materials science and engineering, solid state physics and chemistry, and cross-scale material modelling and production engineering.


SFB 837: Interaction Modelling in Mechanised Tunnelling

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Safety in Tunnel Construction

How can a tunnel be built without putting the surrounding roads and buildings at risk? The geological situation has to be known very precisely. And the requirements for such an undertaking are justifiably high. Yet there is still a risk. The safety requirements also demand expensive measures. 

In collaborative research centre 837 "Interaction modelling in mechanised tunnelling", researchers draw up models in order to make tunnel construction more economical and safer. They develop numeric models, computer-supported simulation methods and draft concepts to realistically portray the complex interactions between the building ground, the tunnel boring machine, support measures and above-ground building development in a computer model. And problems should thus be identified reliably before the working face, the point at which the cutting wheel digs the tunnel. Knowledge from this Collaborative Research Centre enables tunnel projects to be planned and implemented better.


SFB 874: Integration and Representation of Sensory Processes

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How Perception Becomes a Memory

Helping memory on its way is the intention of researchers in Collaborative Research Centre 874 "Integration and Representation of Sensory Processes". The researchers involved research how perception turns into memory and behaviour.
Hearing, smell, taste, sight, touch, balance, and pain: the fundamentals of sensory perceptions and the areas of the brain in which they are found have largely been researched. In contrast, SFB 874 is interested in the next step: how are our sensory signals processed in the brain and thus combined with each other to create a complex memory? Collaborative Research Centre 874 is closing this gap.

The researchers work with a system-oriented neuro-scientific strategy to understand the interaction between sensory signals, perception, behaviour and memory and investigate the respective interdependencies.


SFB 1280: Extinction learning

Unlearning old information

Humans as well as animals have the ability to not only acquire new information, but also to learn that previously acquired knowledge is no longer relevant. The process of initial learning has been extensively studied, whereas the mechanisms of extinction learning are understood only in parts.

Extinction is not limited to merely forgetting old information. It also includes a new learning process that is superimposed over previously acquired knowledge. Under certain conditions, the supposedly no longer existing memory track might re-emerge as an element of psychological problems, for example in cases of anxiety.

In the new collaborative research centre, researchers study the neuronal mechanisms of extinction learning and its clinical properties. They also analyse the issue from the perspective of developmental biology and behavioural science, in humans and in other species, as well as in robots.


Ruhr-Universität is co-applying institution for the following transregios:

SFB/TR 196: Mobile Material Characterization and Localization by Electromagnetic Sensing (MARIE)
Coordination: University of Duisburg-Essen
Other partners: University of Wuppertal, TU Darmstadt, Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques, Fraunhofer Institute for Microelectronic Circuits and Systems
Funded since 2017

SFB/TR 191: Symplectic Structures in Geometry, Algebra and Dynamics
Coordination: University of Cologne
Other partners: Münster University
Funded since 2017

SFB/TR 110: Symmetries and the Emergence of Structure in Quantum Chromodynamics
Coordination: University of Bonn
Other co-applying institutions: Technical University of Munich, Peking University, partners: Forschungszentrum Jülich
Funded since 2016

SFB/TR 129: Oxyflame – Development of methods and models to describe solid fuel reactions within an oxy-fuel atmosphere
Coordination: RWTH Aachen
Other co-applying university: TU Darmstadt
Funded since 2013

SFB/TR 60: Mutual Interaction of Viruses with Cells of the Immune System: From Fundamental Research to Immunotherapy and Vaccination
Coordination: University of Duisburg-Essen
Other co-applying institutions: Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Fudan University, Wuhan University
Funded since 2009


Other collaborative research centres involving researchers from Bochum


SFB/TR 160: Coherent manipulation of interacting spin excitations in tailored semiconductors
Coordination: TU Dortmund
Other partners: Paderborn University, St. Petersburg University, Ioffe Institute St. Petersburg
Funded since 2015

SFB 128: Initiating/Effector versus Regulatory Mechanisms in Multiple Sclerosis – Progress towards Tackling the Disease
Coordination: Münster University
Other partners: Mainz University, LMU Munich, Technical University of Munich, Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research - W.G. Kerckhoff Institute in Bad Nauheim, Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology
Funded since 2012

SFB 823: Statistics of Nonlinear Dynamic Processes
Coordination: TU Dortmund
Other partners: University of Duisburg-Essen
Funded since 2009