Where innovation accelerates

Focus Areas

Accelerator technology

The Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) is one of the leading institutes in the field of accelerator technology. The combination of large research facilities, scientific excellence, and engineering competence for the development, construction, and operation of accelerators at the PSI is unique, and enables the development of facilities and instruments for scientific, medtech, and industrial applications, for example:

  • Compact accelerator systems
  • Research, process technology, and industrial applications
  • Technologies for proton therapy
  • Laser technologies
  • Optoelectronics
  • Control systems and big data

The key technologies of the large research facilities are the precursors for applications such as high-precision manufacturing, mechatronics and robotics, micro- and nanomanufacturing, magnet technologies, rapid electronics, detectors, radiation resistance of electronics, and ultra-high vacuum technology. These technologies are already contributing to the development of numerous new products and the creation of new market segments.

Accelerator technology: SwissFEL

Advanced Materials and processes

Advanced Materials and Processes

The basis and common denominator for many technologies and their industrial applications is materials science, which explores how the interior structure and observable properties of different materials are connected. It provides important foundations for the development of new materials and applications, for example:

  • Advanced analytics
  • Biomaterials
  • Polymer technologies
  • X-ray and extreme UV optical technologies
  • Microfabrication and nanofabrication technologies
  • Nanolithographic processes

The large research facilities at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) make it possible to determine the micro- and nanostructure down to the molecular and atomic scale and their functionalities, namely their dynamics and physical, chemical, and biological properties and processes. These insights are the foundation for industrial innovations in the fields of energy, environment, chemistry, pharmaceuticals, food, metallurgy, and microelectronics.

Humans and Health

In the field of human health, research is conducted on basic questions of structural biology, cancer therapy, and integrated optical measurement systems for medical X-ray diagnostics and pharmaceutical analytics, which have applications in various sectors:

  • Radiotracers and radiopharmaceuticals
  • Tumor research and proton therapy
  • Radio diagnostics
  • Drug discovery
  • Optical measuring systems for medical diagnostics and pharmaceutical analysis

The technologies developed at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) also play a leading role in diagnosis and therapy. The focus here is on proton beam cancer therapy and developing modern radiopharmaceuticals for the diagnosis and treatment of tumors.

The Center for  Proton Therapy (CPT) set up at the PSI in collaboration with industry is the only one of its kind in the world. More than 300 patients are treated with special therapies here each year. The phase-contrast technique is promising for computer-imaging diagnostics and will also facilitate a technological breakthrough in the field of mammography.

Humans and Health: Proton therapy

Energy

Energy

The Canton of Aargau is Switzerland’s leading work and research center in the fields of energy and electro technology. The focus areas in energy research at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) are the development of technologies and processes for utilizing renewable energy sources, the low-emission conversion of energy, and the safe and reliable provision of electric power, for example:

  • Fuel cells and electrolysis
  • Biomass and catalytic processes
  • Energy storage and flexible energy supply
  • Energy scenarios

These are the areas in which central questions for the future of humanity are being answered. Energy suppliers, network operators, technology companies, large-scale consumers, and research have to work together to seek innovative and sustainable strategies and solutions.

In order to enable this collaboration with industry, an energy system integration (ESI) platform is being established at the PSI. The platform gathers the central questions posed by industry and research. In its role as an innovative hub, it will focus on energy storage and flexible energy supply, including power to gas. The ESI platform, which is being set up in several steps and is one of the central technology platforms at PARK INNOVAARE allows all parties involved in the energy value chain to participate, submit their research questions, and launch joint development projects.