Press Release Nr. 40/2020, 29 May 2020

Heidelberg University succeeded in gaining funding from the German Research Foundation (DFG) in the latest approval round for three, internationally visible collaborative research centres. In physics, the collaborative research centre (CRC) studying isolated quantum systems in experimental and theoretical investigations will continue its work in the second funding period (CRC 1225). Funding has also been extended for two research consortia which are organised as transregional CRCs, each with several participating universities: Scientists of the Medical Faculty Heidelberg along with partners in Freiburg and Munich are involved in hepatitis research (CRC/TRR 179). In the molecular life sciences, researchers in Heidelberg and Berlin are investigating the coordination of signal transmission in living cells (CRC/TRR 186). DFG funding for the upcoming four-year period for all three consortia totals more than 40 million euros.

CRC 1225, “Isolated Quantum Systems and Universality in Extreme Conditions” (ISOQUANT), is focused on a field of research of major importance for numerous applications in physics. Many of these systems exhibit characteristic common properties despite fundamental differences in key parameters such as temperature, density, or field strength. To better understand them, the CRC has adopted cross-disciplinary research approaches that go beyond traditional specialisations. In the first funding phase, the researchers in CRC 1225 were able to uncover new relationships between very different physical systems. For example, laboratory experiments with ultracold atoms point to conclusions about the dynamic properties of matter in the early universe shortly after the Big Bang. The results open up new possibilities in quantum simulation, whereby the properties of different systems can be mapped onto a “reference system” that can be studied in the laboratory. “Exploring universal aspects of very different physical quantum systems allows for a broad bandwidth of experimental and theoretical methods to solve overarching issues in physics. Using this interdisciplinary approach, we made important progress in answering fundamental questions and opened up new avenues for continued research that promise an exciting second funding period,” states Prof. Dr Jürgen Berges, spokesperson of the ISOQUANT CRC and researcher at the Institute for Theoretical Physics of Heidelberg University. The DFG is supporting CRC 1225 with approximately 14.3 million euros.



Prof. Dr. Jürgen Berges
Institute for Theoretical Physics
Philosophenweg 16
69120 Heidelberg
Phone: +49 6221 54 9422