Welcome to the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin

At the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB) we explore materials and complex material systems that help to face current and future challenges, such as the energy transition - “Energiewende”. One of the HZB’s research emphases is on materials for thin-film photovoltaics and for the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy carriers (e.g. molecular hydrogen).

To be able to study material structures and processes in detail, the HZB operates two separate large-scale research facilities – the neutron source BER II and the synchrotron radiation source BESSY II – used by some 3,000 guest scientists from all around the World every year. At both facilities, HZB teams have developed in some cases unparalleled instruments and are continuing to work on increasing their measurement precision to allow for new insights to be gleaned.

The HZB is a member of the Helmholtz Association and co-founder of the Competence Centre for Thin-Film and Nanotechnology for Photovoltaics Berlin (PVcomB), whose mission it is to promote the technology transfer to industry.


News and Press Releases

  • <p>Both figures display experimental data on the &ldquo;Dirac cone".</p>14.11.2014

    Warping in topological insulators

    Topological insulators are promising to develop into a material for lossless electricity and information transport. Now, Jaime Sánchez-Barriga and colleagues from HZB investigated for the first time whether the direction of motion of electrons in topological insulators affects their behavior. In their work they identified directions along which electrons are much more prone to scattering losses and cannot conduct as well. To explain their results, they included the spin of the electron and questioned an established theory. The results could push topological insulator research, especially when a future BESSY-VSR will be available to provide much shorter light pulses to study the dynamics of the electrons. Their investigation into the "warping" of topological insulators is published by Physical Review B and has been selected as "Editor's Suggestion". Only six percent of the articles  published there receive this sort of acclaim. [...].

  • <p>Logo der Jahrestagung FVEE 2014</p>11.11.2014

    Jahrestagung des ForschungsVerbund Erneuerbare Energien


    Unter dem Motto „Forschung für die Energiewende – Phasenübergänge aktiv gestalten“ fand am 7. und 8. November die Jahrestagung des ForschungsVerbund Erneuerbare Energien (FVEE) im Umweltforum Berlin statt. Vertreter aus Wissenschaft und Politik referierten über den proaktiven Umgang mit den technologischen, ökonomischen sowie politisch-gesellschaftlichen Herausforderungen der Energiewende. [...].

  • <p>Exploded view drawing of the electrochemical flow cell for soft x-ray absorption and emission spectroscopy. The membrane (yellow) is coated with a metal, serving as working electrode (WE) and that also serves as a support for the solid sample. Counter (CE) and reference electrode (RE) are placed in the liquid chamber. Tubes are attached to allow fast and easy liquid exchange and to prevent radiation damage. Credit: HZB<br /><br /></p>05.11.2014

    New in situ cell for investigating solid- and liquid-state samples and their interfaces under electrical voltage

    A team headed by Dr. Kathrin Aziz-Lange has developed a new in-situ cell for X-ray spectroscopy of fluid samples and their interfaces to solid bodies. What is special is the cell contains electrodes that can expose the sample to voltage during or between measurements. The resulting changes triggered in the electrical structure of the sample can be observed with the help of X-ray absorption and emission spectroscopy in real time. [...].

  • <p>Optical image of a filled root.<br />Credit: P. Zaslansky</p>30.10.2014

    Root canal treatment procedures investigated at BESSY II

  • <p>In january 2014, the HFM was just delivered to HZB.&nbsp; Credit: P. Dera/HZB</p>22.10.2014

    26 tesla! High field magnet exceeds everyone’s expectations

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