Picture of the Month – Winners 2018

Back to the current year Winners

2018, December

A Collection of Ancient Carvings
Amin Hodaei, SMaL

A collection of ancient carvings were found at the bottom of the matter. These ancient carvings are made up of calcium carbonate nanoparticles which have been synthesized using a surface acoustic wave (SAW)-based spray-drier fabricated at CMI.

2018, November

Rare coral
Anastasiia Glushkova, LPMC

In CMi EPFL it was possible to capture all the bizarre beauty of a rare coral-like intermediate phase of methylammonium lead bromide.

2018, October

MgO CMi urchin on a Mg coral
Matthieu Rüegg, Lorenz Hagelüken, LMIS1

After immersion in PBS, magnesium thin film deposited by thermal evaporation degrades and forms MgO nano-spikes on its surface.

2018, September

A gallium strawberry in the shadow of a diamond mushroom
Teodoro Graziosi, Q-Lab

Under a single crystal diamond “mushroom” lies a juicy gallium strawberry. The strawberry is formed by thermal annealing of the diamond microdisk, fabricated by focused ion beam milling. At 500 °C in air, the amorphous carbon created by the 30 kV ion beam is etched and the gallium ions implanted in this area form small spheres or more interesting shapes.

2018, August

Attack of the Nano-Gnomes
Simon Robert Escobar Steinvall, LMSC

An angry nano-gnome is poking his upper body, made out of zinc phosphide nanowires, out of an indium phosphide wafer, ready to attack any unsuspecting PhD students who dare to disturb his rest.

2018, July

The opera house
Benoît Desbiolles, LMIS4

Scanning electron microscope image of suspended titanium nano-structures (walls and membranes) onto silicon nano-wall networks. This was simply done using standard photolithography (VPG200) combined with ion beam etching (IBE350). The curtains like deformation of the titanium nano-walls is most likely due to thermal stress induced during the step of photolithography. 100% Made in CMi.

2018, June

Micro Toad from SuperMario
Antoine Vian, Mathias Steinacher, SMaL

Racing through a field of polymerized capsules in the SEM chamber can reveal some nice surprises such as this mushroom shaped head. Toad’s head is 60 µm in circumference. These capsules were produced using a PDMS microfluidic chip that was fabricated at CMi.

2018, May

A glance at the beautiful cliffs of Etretat from CMi
Richard Meunier, Aleva Neurotherapeutics

If you’ve ever wanted to go to see the beautiful cliffs of Etretat but are stuck doing research in the clean room, then you can come and see their equivalent at the micro-scale in CMi. Topped with a luxurious plain of platinum grains, those sheer and majestic Pt cliffs will offer a breathtaking view, leaving you with incomparable admiration and awe. Guaranteed tourist free, they are the ideal relaxing spot for the worn and tired scientist.

2018, April

AIN butterfly
Bahareh Ghadiani, LPQM

This butterfly belongs to the family known as “AlN”. This group includes the world’s rarest group of butterflies living on the grass of MOCVD AlN for their entire life! This kind of grass only grows on the CMi silicon-silicon oxide wafers.

2018, March

A snake sheds its skin
Ian Rousseau, LASPE

Gallium nitride nanobeam photonic crystals are fabricated using electron beam lithography followed by dry and wet etching.  The tiny (< 70 nm) hexagonal holes are produced by aligning the pattern with the gallium nitride crystal axes and etching in KOH, which attacks the various crystal facets at different rates.  Gallium nitride’s wurtzite crystal symmetry causes the initially circular holes to become hexagons, in contrast to the cubic diamond and zincblende crystal structures of silicon and gallium arsenide, respectively. The “snake skin” is the HSQ hard mask, which has slid off during the wet etching of this particular nanostructure.

2018, February

Micro R2D2
Julien Dorsaz, CMi

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…. *star wars theme* …. WAIT!  In fact, the story unfolds right here and right now in the CMi with R2D2 battling armies of stormtroopers inside the SEM Merlin chamber. This 3D replica was printed with the Nanoscribe professional photonic GT using two-photon absorption mechanism, in galvoscanning mode. The model is 250 micrometers tall and was written in about 3 hours. Next scientific project: Millenium Falcon J !

2018, January

Micro puff pastry roll
Esteban Bermudez, Soft Matter Physics, AMI

Prepared at CMi and rolled at the Adolphe Merkle Institute in Fribourg, the image shows a 70 nm thick SiO2 film rolled into a microtube with multiple folds, resembling the pastries found in the local bakeries. The substrate patterning (MLA150) and thin film deposition (LAB600H & SPIDER) were carried out at CMi. The roll-up process and SEM imaging were performed in Fribourg.