Real structure and mechanical properties of metastable and nanostructured systems

The functionality of many metastable or nanoscale materials (such as graphene or 2D layer crystals) depends essentially on their structural perfection and compositional homogeneity on the atomic to mesoscopic scale. In-situ/ex-situ X-ray diffraction in combination with (scanning) transmission electron microscopy (TEM) techniques are used to comprehensively explore these materials with respect to their structural, chemical and mechanical properties on all relevant length scales. The exact knowledge of these properties serves as a basis for the targeted adjustment and optimization of the material functionality.


Our research currently focuses on the following topical and methodological issues:

  • Structural research on graphene, 2D layer crystals and metastable layered systems
  • Composition fluctuations in dilute semiconductor compounds
  • Synchrotron-based x-ray diffraction for in-situ and ex-situ studies
  • Elastic and plastic properties of nano-objects (nanoindentation)
  • Numerical description of mechanical properties using Finite Element Method


While conventional TEM delivers a 2D image of the 3D object, electron tomography provides a complete 3D reconstruction of the real objects. The method offers new possibilities for structural analysis and presentation down to the nanometer range. It is especially useful for material questions based on an inhomogeneous spatial distribution of structural units or on chemical composition fluctuations, as well as on complex defect structures (see Application Laboratory Electron Tomography).

Selected Paublications

4 Author M. Heilmann , A. S. Prikhodko , M. Hanke , A. Sabelfeld , N. I. Borgardt , J. M. J. Lopes

Influence of Proximity to Supporting Substrate on van der Waals Epitaxy of Atomically Thin Graphene/hexagonal Boron Nitride Heterostructures

Source ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces , 12 , 8897 ( 2020 )
DOI : 10.1021/acsami.9b21490 | 3155 Cite : Bibtex RIS
M. Heilmann, A. S. Prikhodko, M. Hanke, A. Sabelfeld, N. I. Borgardt, and J. M. J. Lopes

3 Author L. Nicolai , Ž. Gačević , E. Calleja , A. Trampert

Electron tomography of pencil-shaped GaN/(In,Ga)N core-shell nanowires

Source Nanoscale Res. Lett. , 14 , 232 ( 2019 )
DOI : 10.1186/s11671-019-3072-1 | Download: PDF | 3096 Cite : Bibtex RIS
L. Nicolai, Ž. Gačević, E. Calleja, and A. Trampert

2 Author J. Berggren , M. Hanke , E. Luna , A. Trampert

Supernormal hardness increase of dilute Ga(As, N) thin films

Source J. Appl. Phys. , 121 , 095105 ( 2017 )
DOI : 10.1063/1.4978019 | Download: PDF | 2907 Cite : Bibtex RIS
J. Berggren, M. Hanke, E. Luna, and A. Trampert

1 Author M. Wu , M. Hanke , E. Luna , J. Puustinen , M. Guina , A. Trampert

Detecting lateral composition modulation in dilute GaAsBi epilayers

Source Nanotechnology , 26 , 425701 ( 2015 )
DOI : 10.1088/0957-4484/26/42/425701 | 2710 Cite : Bibtex RIS
M. Wu, M. Hanke, E. Luna, J. Puustinen, M. Guina, and A. Trampert


Dr. Achim Trampert

Head of Department 

+49 30 20377-280