Research in Condensed Matter
Within the states "solid, liquid, gaseous", the condensed matter physics is exploring the phenomena of the solid state. They are observed in a fascinating variety and a huge complexity. Optical, electrical, magnetic and mechanical properties and processes of different materials gear into each other. Variable temperatures up to some mK allow to control and detect physical processes with unimagined precission.
The development towards smaller and smaller structures is very important for Information Technology. At the moment, we are at the transition from micro- to nano-world which means, that we move from solid materials to systems consisting of some thousands of atoms up to clusters with about ten to hundred atoms or macromolecular networks.
Hence, there arise relationships to condensed phase systems known from atomic and molecular physics and to chemistry. This progress demands advanced diagnostic techniques like detection of single atoms via Scanning Tunneling and Electron Microcsopy as well as new theoretical approaches. Manufacturing and characterizing structures (e.g. nano-structured surfaces, hybrid materials, semiconductor systems) is playing the same important role as the theoretical description of quantum systems, especially their dynamics and transport properties (e.g. molecular contacts, tunneling systems, collective quantum phenomena, dissipation, noise).