Paul Scherrer Institute

The Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) is a multi-disciplinary research institute which belongs to the Swiss ETH-Komplex covering also the ETH Zurich and EPFL. It was established in 1988 by merging in 1960 established EIR (Eidgenössisches Institut für Reaktorforschung = Federal Institute for Reactor Research) and in 1968 established SIN (Schweizerisches Institut für Nuklearphysik = Swiss Institute for Nuclear Physics). The PSI is a multi-disciplinary research centre for natural sciences and technology. In national and international collaboration with universities, other research institutes and industry, PSI is active in solid state physics, materials sciences, elementary particle physics, life sciences, nuclear and non-nuclear energy research, and energy-related ecology. It is the largest Swiss national research institute with about 1,400 (year 2011) members of staff, and is the only one of its kind in Switzerland. PSI is a User Laboratory and runs several particle accelerators. The 590MeV cyclotron, with its 72MeV companion pre-accelerator, is one of them. As of 2011, it delivers up to 2.2mA proton beam, which is the world record for such proton cyclotrons.

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Fuel and chemicals from plant waste

From the inexhaustible raw material lignin, which as a constituent of many plants accumulates in great quantities, fuels and other important substances could in theory be extracted for industry – so far, though, it can't ...

dateJun 29, 2017 in Materials Science
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Injector 2—a pre-accelerator for protons

As fundamental building blocks of matter, protons are a part of all things that surround us. At the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, however, they step out of their usual role and are deployed to generate other particles, namely ...

dateJun 22, 2017 in General Physics
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Historical copper trapped in ice

South America's mining industry supplies half the world with copper. The world's largest mines are located in the Andes. Yet just when copper production began there has remained unclear, until now. Very few artefacts from ...

dateFeb 08, 2017 in Earth Sciences
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Mercury found to be tectonically active

Images acquired by NASA's MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft show geologic features that indicate Mercury is likely still contracting today, joining Earth as a tectonically ...

dateSep 26, 2016 in Space Exploration
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