Leiden Physics hosts 2016 NEVAC day
The Leiden Institute of Physics hosted the annual conference of the Dutch Vacuum Society (NEVAC). Experts in the field of vacuum experiments talked about their research. The 2016 NEVAC Prize was awarded to PhD student Martijn Vos from the TU Eindhoven.
NEVAC is an organization that promotes the exchange of knowledge in the area of vacuum technology. It sets up scientific meetings, excursions and courses, and awards an annual prize to stimulate young researchers to write about their work using vacuum techniques in a clear and coherent way. Around 60 companies and 300 scientists and engineers are part of the society.
Martijn Vos won the NEVAC Prize for his publication about a new atom layer deposition process for more efficient solar cells. With his deposition technique, scientists can produce extremely thin layers of special materials—just a few nanometers thick. Vos describes how to make thin layers of molybdenumoxide and how this could be used to increase the efficiency of solar cells.
Johannes Jobst gave a talk on behalf of Leiden University on his measurements of materials that he composes from different layers, like a layered cake, leading to special compositions. ‘There are two options,’ he explains. ‘Either there is interaction between the layers. Then you have created a new material. Or there is no interaction. In that case the layers are isolated and keep their original properties. Sometimes this is what you want, if you need to protect a layer from the environment.’ Together with his colleagues from Sense Jan van der Molen’s research group, Jobst is able to measure this interaction, and count the number of layers that compose their layered cake. For this they use their microscopy technique called LEEM: low-energy electron microscopy.