The German Research Foundation just announced that CRC 1411 will receive funding until 2028.

The long-term vision of CRC1411 is to develop particle systems with controlled size, shape and composition. The innovative approach in CRC1411 is is that these materials are first developed and optimized for specific product properties in computer models. In the second step, the computer then predicts optimal synthesis conditions that lead to particles with these desired properties. This approach reverses typical manufacturing processes and promises fast and resource-efficient access to functional particle-based materials with optimal characteristics.

We would like to announce the Kavli Institute of Theoretical Physics (KITP) conference entitled:

Structure Design and Emerging Phenomena in Nanoparticle Assemblies: What’s next?

Time: May 15-18, 2023
Location: University of California, Santa Barbara
Registration deadline: April 16, 2023

The conference aims to provide a coherent view of the current state of the field, bringing together researchers with different expertise and backgrounds. It should catalyze the development of new methods, both theoretical, computational and experimental, and define the basic science in this field.

More information can be found at:

The workshop organizers

Michael Engel, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
Laura Na Liu, Universität Stuttgart
Monica Olvera, Northwestern University
Eran Rabani, University of California, Berkeley
Alex Travesset, Iowa State University

Our lab will participate again at this year’s long night of science (open door to the university).

Visit us on south campus this Saturday, May 21 from 18h to 24h and learn about other activities at:

At the IZNF building, Cauerstrasse 3 in Erlangen visitors can perform interactive simulations or learn about our research.
Simulations can be performed on stationary computers, iPads, or on your own smartphone.

Thanks to Navid Panchi, Federico Tomazic, and Nydia Varela-Rosales for javascript/html5 coding and the design of the demos!

Check out the simulation tool here:
Interactive Particle Simulations for LN ’22

We* are coordinating a program at the Kavli Institute of Theoretical Physics at UC Santa Barbara in the period Mar 27, 2023 — May 19, 2023 on the topic nanoparticle assemblies. Applications can still be entered here:

Nanoparticle Assemblies: A New Form of Matter with Classical Structure and Quantum Function

*Coordinators: Michael Engel, Laura Na Liu, Monica Olvera de la Cruz, Eran Rabani, and Alex Travesset

Materials whose elementary building blocks are nanoparticles with dimensions between a few and hundred nanometers, such as nanocrystals and colloids, instead of atoms or molecules, provide a new form of matter, with many properties, both in structure and function, that are not achievable with traditional materials. This raises a number of new fundamental questions such as:

  • What is the minimal physical description at the nanoscale?
  • How to discover new assemblies?
  • What are the effects or properties for these new materials and the characterization of equilibrium and metastability?

The program will bring together scientists from diverse communities: physicists, chemists and material scientists in an effort to address the emerging fundamental questions and long-term prospects of this young field. It will develop collaborative efforts in the areas of programmable assembly, structure prediction, inverse methods, electronic properties and new functional materials, with the goal of becoming a reference for the exciting future ahead.

A new virtual seminar series called GEOMPACK ( aims to bring together researchers from a range of disciplines (physics, materials, biology, mathematics, computer science). The series focuses on problems in geometry and packing in materials and biology, and provides an avenue to share new research and promote discussion.

Seminars will take place in spring every two weeks and are scheduled for Wednesdays at 4:30 pm (London time). The first seminar will be Wednesday, March 24, from Sabetta Matsumoto (GA Tech), “Twisted topological tangles or: the knot theory of knitting”.

Other speakers this semester are Marjolein Dijkstra (Universiteit Utrecht), Sasche Hilgenfeldt (University of Illinois), Lisa Manning (Syracuse University), Vinothan Manoharan (Harvard University), and Giuliana Indelicato (University of York).

To see the line up of speakers and to subscribe to the seminar announcements, visit

FAU will receive funds to establish a National Center for High Performance Computing (NHR@FAU). It will be part of a nationwide network with (initially) seven other centers. The federal and state governments will provide a total of up to 625 million € in funding for the entire project over the next 10 years. Scientific support for broad application groups, promoting the further development of HPC techniques and tools, and training and education activities will also be funded in addition to HPC systems and operating costs.

This is very exciting news for all computationally working research groups in Erlangen. Congratulations to everybody involved!

Read more about this development here.