Experimental Methods

Experiments in soft matter physics often deal with complex systems and the combination of different experimental methods is necessary to arrive at results.
Our group is specialized on scattering experiments with different probes (X-rays, neutrons, light) which we apply and try to advance. In addition to that we maintain instruments for polymer characterization and for the measurements that are specific to certain research projects.

X-Ray scattering

We do small-angle-X-ray-scattering in two different set-ups.

A pinhole system with a sample chamber that allows a wide range of experimental conditions combined with a 2d detector.
A classical Kratky compact camera for experiments on isotropically scattering systems.

X-ray diffractometry and –reflectometry is done with a Bruker D8 Advance diffractometer. In particular we do reflectometry on the liquid-gas interface.

Photon correlation spectroscopy

A light scattering set-up is combined with an ALV correlator and a cryostat to allow quasieelastic light scattering in a wide temperature range.

Dielectric spectroscopy

Two experimental instruments are used to study the dielectric function of (mainly) liquid samples in a wide temperature range. Combining both methods a range of frequencies from mHz to GHz is covered.

Differential scanning analysis

For the characterization of polymers as well as for the study of the glass transition we use a TA Instruments DSC. The instrument allows standard DSC measurements and thermally modulated DSC.

Isotherms of monolayers

Two set-ups are used to measure the isotherms of monomolecular layers on a liquid subphase.