The working group "metrology-based material development" (MM) deals with the targeted development of new materials by using the measurement techniques available in CeMOS.

The aim is to develop future-oriented solutions in the fields of energy storage, energy efficiency and ecology, medical technology and others. The current focus is on thermal energy utilization, storage and thermal insulation. Likewise, questions concerning new materials, process control and heat and mass transfer, including the associated measurement technology of the other working groups, are jointly developed.

A large pool of test, measurement, remote monitoring and simulation techniques enables us to carry out microscale as well as large-scale developments. There are 600 m² of technical center and 300 m² of open space available for set-up and long-term tests. Thus, it is possible to carry out our research and product development from simple numerical modeling of a system to real scale holistically and close to industry and end users.

Publications on this topic

An optical measuring system with a mid- and a near-infrared camera is used for the non-destructive detection of water damage in masonry. In the mid-infrared and in the near-infrared, the temperature distribution on the one hand and the moisture distribution on the other hand of a wall surface to be measured can be determined. Based on this information, the origin of the moisture can be clearly determined. The system with combined camera technology thus allows the cause of the damage to be determined quickly and, above all, easily without the need for many years of expert knowledge.

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The purification of seawater or contaminated spring water into drinking or process water can be realized as an energy-saving alternative to evaporation by means of freeze crystallization in combination with the pressing of ice as a post-treatment method. The dissolved substances accumulate in a solution which is discharged separately. Based on the thermal design and force calculations as well as the construction and manufacturing of a laboratory plant, the success of this process could be proven and enables the future production of large seawater desalination plants which on the one hand can be easily operated with renewable energies and on the other hand do not represent a chemical burden on the environment, since chemical pre- and post-treatments can be dispensed with.

The reduction of heating quantities, especially in the area of private households, is an important goal in order to reduce the use of combustion fuels in the future and thus to protect the climate. The development of suitable heat accumulators, among others based on salt hydrate mixtures and their eutectics whose chemical composition is adapted to the melting point and the field of application, and the accompanying physical investigations (heat capacity, melting enthalpy, long-term stability, ...) enable their successful application. The thermal design, construction and successful installation of diffusion-tight PCM encapsulations in prefabricated wooden houses and concrete elements demonstrate the heat storage potential and stabilization of room temperature in both cooling and heating phases. Phase change materials are also being developed specifically to enable food and drug transports to be realized in the future with pure electromobility. For this purpose, thermally stabilized containers ranging from "cool boxes" to truck format are being developed at the institute.

The release of approximately 510 hectares of land currently used for military purposes poses major challenges and far-reaching prospects for the city of Mannheim. One chance of these conversion areas is to advance the city of Mannheim as an important location for economy, technology and mobility.

For ENsource, the following fields of action and research questions can be derived:

Energy efficiency: energetic model developments for buildings and quarters with special consideration of the barracks areas.

Energy generation and grids: Neighborhood-related energy generation and examination of possible locations for energy generation, taking into account different energy sources.Optimized system integration of innovative storage concepts with large-scale solar thermal energy and the existing district heating grid, integrating different heat storage variants. Phase change materials and established sensible storage systems will be considered.


Large-scale solar thermal, seasonal storage, heat pumps.

Energy management:

System integration of decentralized RE in district heating network, integration of mobile storage systems.

Business models:

Operator models between decentralized and centralized networks

Further links to the joint project

ENsource is funded by the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts of Baden-Württemberg and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF 2014-2020). File no: FEIH_ZAFH_1248932
Partners: HFT Stuttgart / HS Aalen / HS Bieberach / HS Heilbronn / HS Mannheim / HS Pforzheim / HS Reutlingen / HS Rottenburg / Fraunhofer ISE / ITW / ZSW / KIT.

The research area "Biomedicine and Medical Technology" deals with the interface of multimodal molecular analysis, device development and IT solutions. The focus is on the development, establishment and validation of new biomedical and medical technology relevant methods, especially in the context of molecular imaging. The fusion of these topics enables CeMOS to offer novel, highly informative studies and development collaborations in the field of pharmacology (PK/PD), toxicology, as well as clinical and biomedical issues. To ensure this, new analysis strategies for the resulting highly complex multidimensional data sets are developed and applied in close collaboration with the research area "Bioinformatics and Data Science".

Mass spectrometry-based test systems for drug discovery research

The Assay Group is engaged in the development and automation of test systems for screening and profiling of active compounds at various stages of drug discovery research. MALDI mass spectrometry (MS) enables a fast and, above all, label-free analysis technique. Time-consuming sample preparation steps are no longer necessary and even cell-based assays can be measured directly without separating the cells. Another advantage of this analysis technique is also the possibility to analyze many molecules in parallel in one run. Laboratory automation systems are used to achieve higher sample throughput and increase reproducibility.
Applications include both mechanistic assays, where the substrate and product of the enzymatic reaction are known, and phenotypic screens. In phenotypic assays, the first step in method development is to identify target molecules that exhibit concentration-response dependence.

Analysis of NCE, NBE and formulations

The working group "Analysis of NCE, NBE and Formulations" (NCE/NBE) is concerned with the directional, mainly mass spectrometric, analysis of new chemical and biological substances - as pure substances and in biological matrices. For this purpose, analytical methods are developed and validated specifically for active pharmaceutical ingredients or their dosage form. These studies enable, for example, decisions to be made on the stability and quality of active pharmaceutical ingredients to ensure safe use for humans.
The scientific interests of the group include the further development of spatially resolved methods such as ultra-high resolution MALDI magnetic resonance MS imaging or liquid extraction surface analysis by ESI-MS for the characterization of small chemical substances (active pharmaceutical ingredients or their formulations). These techniques are used to ensure that new active ingredients reach the right place in the body and can thus act ("drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics"; DMPK).
Another major focus of the group is the characterization of therapeutic proteins and antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). To pursue this goal, the group combines advanced mass spectrometry methods for protein characterization (LC-MS/MS and LC-MALDI for top-down, middle-down, middle-up protein analysis) and de novo peptide sequencing.
The technological leadership of CeMOS in the fields of mass spectrometry, Raman, mid-infrared, UV, VIS, and fluorescence measurement techniques, as well as the possibilities of image-based presentation and calculation of the results, makes it possible to tailor the tasks of the partners to the respective challenge.

Multivariate chemometrics, algorithm development and research-oriented prototyping for proof-of-concept studies.

The Bioinformatics and Data Science research area has extensive expertise in machine learning and data science and provides services in multivariate statistics for subtype and latent pattern detection in hyperspectral datasets with a focus on rapid agile prototyping and algorithmic research for proof-of-concept studies.

Computational support for molecular imaging applications.

The Bioinformatics and Data Science workspace provides scalable and distributed computational power to answer common questions in molecular imaging applications such as drug screening and quantification in tissue samples, biomarker discovery, targeted screening for analytes, spatial correlations, and multivariate analyses

Multimodal integration of hyperspectral image datasets

The Bioinformatics and Data Science workspace provides methods for fusing multimodal datasets such as MALDI-MSI, MIR and Raman spectroscopy, NIR image analysis, VIS images, and false color images at high resolution to enable data-driven research.

API Solutions and Plug-Ins for Imaging Software Platforms

The Bioinformatics and Data Science work area addresses existing imaging software solutions to bridge the gap between proprietary platforms and open-source community-driven programmatic solutions

Using the latest technologies in hardware and software

To overcome computational and storage capacity limitations of individual computing systems, CeMOS provides scalable solutions based on lightweight container technologies that allow flexible distribution in a compute cluster environment in combination with powerful edge computing devices to process measurement data directly at the source of its origin.

Development of strategies to build research-oriented but industry-standard computing clusters and a scalable data management and storage infrastructure.

The Bioinformatics and Data Science work area provides systematic analysis of data load and computational requirements and provide custom solutions for analysis needs and data infrastructure.

The work area "Optical Instrumentation" covers the complete range of optical instrumentation development, in the wavelength ranges UV/VIS, NIR and MIR, including the special disciplines fluorescence and thermal imaging. Both lens systems and fiber optic systems are developed for these wavelength ranges, including the conception and design as well as the precision mechanical construction of task-specific probe heads. In addition to the optomechanics area, the associated electronic components for controlling and recording the signals of the corresponding optical sensors are also developed and produced.
In close cooperation with the IT specialists, complete equipment units are created, from the probe head to the evaluation software.

Puplications on this topic

For the broad use of the detection of any light-optical signals the development of own detection electronics is constantly advanced. Hereby, fiber optic sensors of any kind can be connected via a modular coupling system for a wide variety of applications. The actual process coupling is then achieved with these fiber sensors.
In addition to the detection of currently up to 4 channels parallel / 16 channels serial, the unit also provides LED light sources of wavelengths between 250 nm and 1700 nm.
Sampling frequencies up to 1 kHz are realized. Sampling frequency, gain as well as signal sequence are controllable from the PC. Stand-alone operation is also possible. The standard output is provided via USB interfaces. However, 4-20mA, 0-10V, Ethernet or any other BUS standards can be implemented. A radio remote monitoring is also available.
The overall design of the device is modular. Thus, it is possible to react to different requirements on demand and on time. Depending on the objective, the recorded measured values can be transferred to etc.) and/or to a PC or process control system (PCS) for further data evaluation/display.
The development is constantly advanced. The technical details will change constantly accordingly.

The automation of process flows is playing an increasingly important role in industry and science. The automated and digitalized monitoring of processes should not be underestimated. Especially in quality control, highly efficient monitoring systems are required. The development of the mid-infrared (MIR) scanner starts exactly at this point. The scanner is designed to scan surfaces in the non-visible wavelength range in industrial applications at a scanning rate of up to 1 million samples per second. The scanning field can be up to 50 cm² and is acquired with a (scanning) resolution of 20 µm. The measurement results of the scanner are available within a few seconds, which clearly distinguishes this system from conventional scanning systems.  The aim of the scanning system is the detection of lipid-containing structures on various substrates. The ideal field of application for the scanner is therefore forensic science, or more precisely dactyloscopy.
In this context, the scanning system was able to demonstrate that the detection of fingerprints is possible in principle and that these can be extracted from the substrate with little computational effort. In this case, the scanning process relies on the use of two different laser wavelengths (3417 nm and 3584 nm), via which it is possible to distinguish finger grease.
The MIR scanner was also able to demonstrate the transillumination of 200 µm PVC layers. Quality control of hidden structures such as concealed conductor tracks on printed circuit boards (multilayers) can thus be effortlessly detected and checked for quality).

In the field of medical cancer diagnostics, the use of optical measurement techniques often focuses on laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy. A novel, multispectral stab probe for in-vivo tissue analysis was developed, patented and tested at the Center for Mass Spectrometry and Optical Spectroscopy (CeMOS)) in cooperation with the University of Heidelberg, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Center for Medical Research (ZMF). The measurement system represents a combination of UV/VIS, NIR and fluorescence spectroscopy. A characteristic feature of the probe, which is based on the backscatter principle, is the flower-like arrangement of the total of seven glass fibers.
The use of special materials allows the autoclavable probe to be used under simultaneously applied ultrasound imaging or magnetic resonance imaging. Evaluation of the probe was performed in vitro in an aqueous tissue model at a wide range of concentrations. As a result of this part of the research, mathematical correction mechanisms were developed to eliminate scattering and absorption effects in the determination of quantitative fluorophore concentrations. The in-vivo applicability is performed in an animal model. Spectra of benign, consecutive and malignant tissue are recorded with the different modalities. A combination of all measured values allows a label-free classification of the respective tissue using a virtual photometric principal component analysis (PCA). Based on changes in biochemical, physical-morphological and colorimetric values ((oxy-/deoxy-)hemoglobin, fat and tissue scatter) it is possible to distinguish between malignant and benign tissue.