Forthcoming Events

10.04.2017 - 12.04.2017, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland FHNW, Brugg-Windisch
21.04.2017 - 21.04.2017, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Freiestrasse 3, University of Berne


An ultrafast X-ray source in a laboratory format- New Science paper by Hans Jakob Wörner, Jean-Pierre Wolf and co-workers
La lumière en lumière- received the PRIX ROBERVAL 2016
The making of a bacteriorhodopsin movie- using time-resolved serial femtosecond crystallography
Retaining Postdoc Mothers in an Academic Career- OPN column by Ursula Keller and Anna Garry
Ambizione grant awarded to Rajeswari Jayaraman- postdoc in Fabrizio Carbone’s group
Fitting wizard published- A Toolkit to Fit Nonbonded Parameters from and for Condensed Phase Simulations
ERC Starting Grant for Rachel GrangeStrategies to enhance nonlinear optical signal in oxide nanomaterials to avoid using high power sources
A Journey into Time in Powers of Ten- exhibition in Campus Info, ETH Hönggerberg, Sept. - Dec. 2016
Four new scientific highlights- by MUST and FAST PIs Gebhard Schertler, Hans-Jakob Wörner, Jacques Moser, Natalie Banerji and Ursula Keller
ERC Starting Grant for Natalie Banerji- Organic semiconductors interfaced with biological environments - OSIRIS


The NCCR MUST (Molecular Ultrafast Science and Technology) is an interdisciplinary research program launched by the Swiss National Science Foundation in 2010. It brings together 18 Swiss research groups working in Ultrafast Science across the fields of physics and chemistry. Our themes are:
  • Watching atoms and electrons in molecules and solids at work
  • Observing the fastest processes in nature
  • Controlling atomic and electronic motion
MUST scientists create new experimental and theoretical tools and to apply them to unravel the fastest processes in the physics and chemistry of natural and manmade matter. Experimental tools rely on ever-shorter sources of electromagnetic radiation, be it ultraviolet, visible, infrared or even bursts of X-rays. Currently, we are witnessing further huge steps forward in these technologies. New sources of femtosecond X-ray pulses, such as the slicing scheme at synchrotrons, or the X-ray free electron laser (XFEL), are built or planned - one of them at the PSI (SwissFEL). Electron diffraction reaches ultrafast time scales, techniques similar to NMR are extended into the IR and UV/VIS spectrum, attosecond pulses of light bring us to the time scales of electron motion, and intense THz pulses allow for direct excitation of structural modes. Improved, and even novel, theoretical tools emerge from constantly growing computational capabilities, which in turn enable us to tackle previously unsolved problems.

In Switzerland every modern aspect of Ultrafast Science is covered by the MUST network and Swiss researchers are among the leaders in the field. The research goals of MUST include examining the structural dynamics of the building blocks in nature, and how changes in structure are related to function. Moreover, MUST will shed light on the role of electrons, specifically the rearrangement of the electron density during changes in structure. MUST will also try to measure how fast electrons are transported within molecules to tackle problems related to electron transport.

Such science is fundamental in nature but relates strongly to a number of major challenges which our society faces. A detailed understanding of the structural dynamics of molecules will help developing alternative sources of energy, synthesizing complex drugs, or designing electronics in the post-Moore’s law era.

The NCCR MUST network is developing outreach projects to promote science in schools, and activities to promote the recruitment, retention and advancement of women in science. An example of our outreach program is the Pendulum Clock experiment, developed by Martin Huppert and David Stapfer, Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Attosecond Science (Hans Jakob Wörner group), ETH Zurich. The movie was made by Esther Rusterholz.
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NCCR MUST Office : ETHZ IQE/ULP-HPT H3 | Auguste-Piccard-Hof 1 | 8093 Zurich | E-Mail | +41 44 633 36 02
The National Centres of Competence in Research (NCCR) are a research instrument of the Swiss National Science Foundation