IBM Research Europe

European Research Council funds research into single-molecule devices by atom manipulation

Share this post:

A team formed by IBM Research scientist Dr. Leo Gross, University Regensburg professor Dr. Jascha Repp, and University Santiago de Compostela professor Dr. Diego Peña Gil has received a European Research Center (ERC) Synergy Grant for their project “Single Molecular Devices by Atom Manipulation” (MolDAM). The ERC funding of this interdisciplinary project includes up to more than €9 million, over six years.

Molecules are nature’s fundamental building blocks for life, having countless different roles, properties and functionalities. In MolDAM a team formed by physicists and chemists will aim to control single molecules and chemical bonds at will.

About MolDAM

Simply put, the main goal of MolDAM is to realize physicist and Nobel laureate Richard Feynman’s vision: building up matter from individual atoms the way we want, by controlling chemical reactions with the tip of a scanning probe microscope. This way, the team wants not only to resolve chemical reactions with unprecedented resolution in space and time, but also to discover completely new reactions.

With these funds, novel molecules and nanostructures will be designed and built with atomic precision using atom manipulation with scanning probe microscopes. Using ultrafast light pulses, MolDAM aims at obtaining “movies” of how a bond is formed, observing in time how atoms rearrange in the course of a chemical reaction. Controlling single-electron charges within the custom-built structures will enable the investigation of electron transfer, carrier generation and recombination and redox-reactions at the molecular level. In other words, the team will catch single molecules in action.

Building and studying atomically defined molecular devices on their intrinsic length and time scales will advance our fundamental understanding of the molecular world with impact on the fields of chemical synthesis, light harvesting, molecular machinery and computing.


Inventing What’s Next.

Stay up to date with the latest announcements, research, and events from IBM Research through our newsletter.


More IBM Research Europe stories

Continuing the journey to frictionless quantum software: Qiskit Chemistry module & Gradients framework

We’ve taken another important step on our path towards frictionless quantum computing: A new release of Qiskit with a completely overhauled Qiskit Chemistry module, as well as a brand new Qiskit Gradients framework. Both enhancements pave the way for quantum application software that serves the needs of domain experts and quantum algorithm researchers.

Continue reading

Could AI help clinicians to predict Alzheimer’s disease before it develops?

A new AI model, developed by IBM Research and Pfizer, has used short, non-invasive and standardized speech tests to help predict the eventual onset of Alzheimer’s disease within healthy people with an accuracy of 0.7 and an AUC of 0.74 (area under the curve).

Continue reading

Adversarial Robustness Toolbox: One Year Later with v1.4

One year ago, IBM Research published the first major release of the  Adversarial Robustness Toolbox (ART) v1.0, an open-source Python library for machine learning (ML) security. ART v1.0 marked a milestone in AI Security by extending unified support of adversarial ML beyond deep learning towards conventional ML models and towards a large variety of data types […]

Continue reading