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PTB News

Three times a year, PTB News provides topical information from the varied spectrum of activities of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) consisting of fundamental research, legal metrology and PTB's various activities in the service of the economy.


Simulation der Elektronenpakete entlang der horizontalen Strahlachse in einem lasererzeugten Plasma-Kielfeld. Die hochbeschleunigten Elektronenpakete sind durch eine Plasmablase elektrisch eingeschlossen. Die Dichte der Elektronen skaliert von niedrig (blau) zu hoch (magenta). (Abb.: J. Ludwig, cc 4.0 Wikimedia)

Laser excitation in plasmas may enable compact particle accelerators to be realized in the near future. Such accelerators are an alternative to current accelerator facilities that often extend over kilometers. A diagnostic procedure has therefore been developed at the Metrology Light Source. It can be applied to the geometric beam parameters of the electron bunches needed for this purpose.

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MR image of the heart in one phase of the cardiac cycle. Left: image reconstructed directly from the measured data; center: result of the recently developed method; right: reference image. The reference image required a measurement time that was more than six times longer than that of the new method.

In patients with a heart condition, magnetic resonance imaging allows parameters such as the pumping capacity of the heart to be determined. This method, however, has a disadvantage: data acquisition is time-consuming. At PTB, a physical model was combined with a neural network to develop a procedure that requires only a small amount of measurement data (and thus only a short measuring time) to...

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Die Teilchen sind innerhalb der goldenen Struktur in der Mitte gespeichert. Der Aufbau ist innen hohl und ähnelt einem Stapel von Unterlegscheiben unterschiedlicher Dicke. (Foto: Stefan F. Sämmer/JGU Mainz)

A new method to cool protons by means of laser-cooled ions – in this case, beryllium ions – has been successfully implemented for the first time worldwide. What is new about this method is that the cooling power can now be transmitted via a resonant electric circuit, covering an enhanced distance of 9 cm from one trap to the other. In this way, the proton in one of the traps can be cooled down to...

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With its interactive software that can be used to correct measured ultrasound signals, PTB is intending to make its signal deconvolution procedure available to a larger group of users and thus to make a contribution to quality assurance in ultrasound metrology. This open-source software program is available free of charge and can be adapted to individual requirements.

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Schematic representation of the measurement setup used for calibrating an MFM tip by means of a quantum sensor. The MFM tip (turquoise) generates a magnetic stray field which can be measured precisely over a single NV center (yellow) in a diamond substrate (blue). If the tip is scanned over the NV center, its stray field distribution is obtained – and thus quantum-accuracy information on its magnetic imaging properties is also gained.

A classical measurement system for measuring magnetic field distributions, which vary spatially on the nanometer scale, was calibrated by means of an atomic quantum sensor for the first time. This new calibration procedure does not depend on simplifying model assumptions and allows more reliable measurements of magnetic field distributions with high spatial resolution.

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Weil Nanopartikel kleiner als rote Blutkörperchen sind, können sie als „Fähren“ für Medikamente oder Impfstoffe dienen. (Foto: Adobe Stock / Kateryna_Kon)

Nanoparticles can be used, for example, to deliver vaccines or drugs deep into the human body to precisely where they are needed. To determine the dose, it is essential to acquire the most accurate information possible on the concentration of these minute particles. A very accurate and fast analytical system measures particle sizes stretching from nanoparticles of approx. 40 nm to microparticles...

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Maßverkörperung mit den kreisförmigen Chirp-Mustern (Ausschnitt: 3D-Ansicht der Strukturen)

The measurement responses of optical measuring devices to surface topography can be described by the instrument transfer function (ITF). At PTB, a novel material measure has been developed to characterize two-dimensional instrument transfer functions (2D-ITF) of optical measuring instruments. This material measure is flexible and easy to use. Moreover, it shows high reproducibility and robustness.

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Mit einem magnetooptischen Viewer gemessene Verteilung der magnetischen Flussdichte des neuen Maßstabs

Magnetic scales are used in various technological areas to measure positions and angles. PTB’s invention allows magnetic scales for precision positioning to be manufactured fast and at low cost. This novel procedure mainly consists in patterning the magnetic film defining the scale by means of a laser. Structure sizes in the micrometer range and sharp transitions between the magnetic domains allow...

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An innovative concept for improving the sensitivity of a quantum sensor for velocity measurement has made versatile applications in the aerospace industry possible. The new procedure allows high velocities to be recorded quickly with high accuracy and in a large dynamic range. For this purpose, a conventional Doppler measurement is complemented by an additional element of a rubidium cell, and the...

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Das Hochfrequenzpersonenschallexposimeter im Einsatz

At many workplaces, the prevailing sound exposure is caused by sound in the high-frequency audible range or even by ultrasound. It has to be possible to detect noise exposure with a small measurement uncertainty even in this frequency range. PTB’s concept of a mobile high-frequency personal sound exposure meter is suited to measuring a large number of quantities that are typical of the audible...

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Mathias Richter
Mathias Richter, Head of Division 7 Temperature and Synchrotron Radiation, was elected to the Council of the German Physical Society (DPG).

Piet Schmidt
Piet Schmidt, Head of the QUEST Institute at PTB, was appointed as a “Fellow of the American Physical Society” (APS) in recognition of his achievements in the development of quantum logic spectroscopy techniques and their...

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The new European Metrology Network (EMN) for Radiation Protection was launched on 16 September 2021. The expertise of 16 metrology institutes, two national radiation protection institutes and one European radiation protection organization which are now members is gathered here under the umbrella of EURAMET.

(Contact: Annette Röttger, +49 531 592-6010, Opens local program for sending emailannette.roettger(at)ptb.de)

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An additional new European Metrology Network (EMN), also under the umbrella of EURAMET, took up work at the beginning of October 2021. Here, 14 metrology organizations which are currently members are working on utilizing the full potential of advanced manufacturing with the aid of improved measuring technologies. (Contact: Harald Bosse, +49 531 592-5010, Opens local program for sending emailharald.bosse(at)ptb.de)

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In the new joint project “ATIQ – Quantencomputer mit gespeicherten Ionen für Anwendungen” (quantum computers with stored ions for applications), 25 partners are aiming to develop the first generation of reliable and user-friendly quantum computer demonstrators with around-the-clock availability on the basis of ion trap technology within 30 months. To achieve this, the leading ion trap research...

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For PTB, the long-wave transmitter DCF77 is still the most important medium for the dissemination of legal time in Germany. Millions of radio-controlled clocks throughout Europe receive the time signals that are broadcast at 77.5 kHz. PTB’s contract with the company Media Broadcast GmbH for it to operate the transmitter has just been extended to 2031. Due to continuous modernization of the...

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