Research Institutions

Postfach 101344
03046 Cottbus

Micro actuators and sensors are the fundamentals of miniaturized, intelligent and networked systems. Since 2012, a completely new type of powerful actuators has been developed and tested in the project group "Mesoscopic Actuators and Systems" MESYS of the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems IPMS in cooperation with the Brandenburg University of Technology BTU Cottbus - Senftenberg. Electrostatic actuators are used to move plates or bend cantilevers and therefore deflect light or laser beams, move liquids or generate ultrasound. The researchers aim is to solve fundamental problems and limitations of conventional electrostatic actuators, for which large deflections can only be realized in combination with large dimensions and high energy consumption. Using a suitable lever principle, the researchers developed a new class of electrostatic bending actuators that of an extremely compact design, large deflections and no hysteresis. Using conventional silicon manufacturing processes, these new actuators can be integrated directly into semiconductor components and CMOS circuits, thus enabling cost-effective volume production. Thanks to high performance and scalability of the patented actuators, various fields of application and design possibilities can be adressed. Optical applications are, for example, high-precision positioning drives of micro-tilt mirrors or lens systems for laser beam deflection, pico projectors, 3D-endoscopes or microscopic applications. NED-actuators are also suitable as optical switches or the highly precise positioning of optical waveguides. Furthermore, a variety of non-optical applications can be addressed, such as micro pumps and valves for microfluidic systems or as miniaturized loudspeakers for hearing aids, smartphones and wearables. Contrary to existing micromechanical loudspeakers NED-based speakers offer both an extremely compact design and high performance.

Unter den Eichen 87
12205 Berlin
030 8104-1609

BAM improves safety in technology and chemistry through research and development, testing, analysis, approvals, advice and information. Based on research work and long-term expert knowledge BAM department 6 (Materials Protection and Surface Technology) contributes to the functional reliability of technical products, constructions and plants which are subject to complex mechanical, chemical, physical, thermal or climate exposure. Optical methods and processes are used in divisions 6.4, 6.7, and 6.8.

Universitätsplatz 1
01968 Senftenberg
03573 85 506 o.0357385523

- Development and Analysis of optical protection layers for organic and anorganic semiconductor products and circuits
- Characterization and Evaluation of the reliability and forecast of the life time of optical devices and devices under optical irradiation with regards to wavelength and intensity of light
- characterization of optical devices, light sources with respect to efficiency and optical performance using an integrating sphere up to 120cm in diameter
- generation of ELUMDAT files based on the optical results and performance of the optical devices
- development of methods for optical failure analysis e.g. hot spot thermography und emission microscopy

Rutherfordstraße 2
12489 Berlin
+49 30 67055-509

The main expertise of this Institute is the development of intelligent sensors and data processing software solutions for commercial, industrial and scientific purposes.

Some of the Institute key products and applications are shown in the figure above, these application are used today for the latest airborne and satellite technology. The knowledge and spin-offs gained from such products have been passed on to commercial and industrial users, and are now used for technology transfer projects for commercial and industrial purposes.

The institute is also dedicated to scientific and research activities, for this education and technology transfer plays a major role, the institute is currently involved with partnerships with global universities and fellow institutes in conducting international summer schools for students, and encouraging and promoting student transfer and scholarships for PhD students.

The Institute also defines and develops geometrically and/or spectral high-resolution sensor systems in the visible and infrared area of the electromagnetic radiation as well as the thematic real time processing of picture data for information relevant for users for strategically purposes. The operational application for such sensors requires an extensive autonomy which allows the independent operating of the system which is used in the development and building of small satellites.

Magdeburger Straße 50
14770 Brandenburg
03381 355 101
Gustav-Kirchhoff-Str. 4
12489 Berlin
+49 (0)30 / 6932-2602

The Ferdinand-Braun-Institut, Leibniz-Institut fuer Hoechstfrequenztechnik (FBH) researches electronic and optical components, modules and systems based on compound semiconductors. These devices are key enablers that address the needs of today’s society in fields like communications, energy, health and mobility. Specifically, FBH develops light sources from the visible to the ultra-violet spectral range: high-power diode lasers with excellent beam quality, UV light sources and hybrid laser systems. Applications range from medical technology, high-precision metrology and sensors to optical communications in space. In the field of microwaves, FBH develops high-efficiency multi-functional power amplifiers and millimeter wave frontends targeting energy-efficient mobile communications as well as car safety systems. In addition, compact atmospheric microwave plasma sources are devellopped for medical applications or surface coating.

The FBH is a competence center for III-V compound semiconductors and has a strong international reputation. FBH competence covers the full range of capabilities, from design to fabrication to device characterization.

In close cooperation with industry, its research results lead to cutting-edge products. The institute also successfully turns innovative product ideas into spin-off companies. Thus, working in strategic partnerships with industry, FBH assures Germany’s technological excellence in microwave and optoelectronic research.

The Ferdinand-Braun-Institut develops high-value products and services for its partners in the research community and industry which are tailored precisely to fit individual needs. The institute offers its international customer base complete solutions and know-how as a one-stop agency – from design to ready-to-ship modules.

Research topics & competencies:

  • Diode lasers
  • Gallium nitride optoelectronics
  • Microwave components & systems
  • Gallium nitride electronics
  • Materials and process technology
Einsteinufer 37
10587 Berlin
+49 (0)30 / 31002-400

Fraunhofer HHI does research and development in the areas of photonic components and networks, fiber optic sensor systems, mobile networks, and video coding and transmission. With our 300 employees and 200 students, we focus on enabling the continuous growth of internet traffic, and on developing new sensor technologies for various applications. Due to our long standing history in research, nowadays every internet user is in contact – without knowing – with our technologies: Every second bit transported in the internet is a H.264 or H.265 encoded movie. HHI is a major contributor to these standards, which are installed on about two billion devices. Every second bit transported in the internet also touches on of our photonic components, which serve as optoelectronic converters in the nodes of the network.


Geiselbergstr. 69
14476 Potsdam
+49 (0)331 / 568-10


Progress in optical technologies is considerably based on novel functional materials with special optical, electrical and photosensitive properties. Functional polymers and polymer-based functional elements for optical technologies are focal points of development at Fraunhofer IAP. These activities can be summarized under the headline “Light as a tool – tools for light”. Research projects combine on an interdisciplinary bases polymer synthesis, processing and the fabrication of optical functional elements and devices. Key aspects in research complexes cover: materials for all-optical structuring used for optical components, security labels and structured biofunctional surfaces; holographic materials for fabrication of diffractive optical elements; liquid crystals and polymers processable by photo-orientation for the fabrication of anisotropic functional layers in display technologies, sensor systems (e.g. retarder, polarizer, anisotropic emitter); semi-conducting and electro-luminescent polymers and nano-composites applicable for organic light-emitting diodes (OLED), organic field-effect transistors (OFET) and organic photovoltaic, development of optical probes for life sciences, optical oxygen measurement in small volumes and development of polymer lasers. Additional subjects of current research cover for example fluorescent materials for special light converter systems, organic lasing and chromogenic materials for smart windows and display application, materials for functionalization of surfaces and optical functional layers in sensor systems as well as organic-inorganic hybrid materials and nano-composites for various applications in optics and photonics.

Tailored on customer needs Fraunhofer IAP offers a complete range of research and development services from high-purity synthesis and analysis of materials, processing and device technologies up to prototype testing based on interdisciplinary experiences of chemists, physicists and engineers and state-of-the-art equipment, such as clean-room facility, as well. Working with partners from optical and chemical industries Fraunhofer IAP acts at the interface between material science and optics and as mediator between chemical and optical industry.

Scientists of Fraunhofer IAP give lectures at Potsdam University, e.g. on polymer chemistry, polymer physics, photochemistry, photophysics and supramolecular chemistry, and take care of PhD students.

Pascalstr. 8-9
10587 Berlin
+49 (0)30 / 39006-0

Das Fraunhofer IPK in Berlin steht seit über 35 Jahren für Exzellenz in der Produktionswissenschaft. Es betreibt angewandte Forschung und Entwicklung für die gesamte Prozesskette produzierender Unternehmen – von der Produktentwicklung über den Produktionsprozess, die Instandhaltung von Investitionsgütern und die Wiederverwertung von Produkten bis hin zu Gestaltung und Management von Fabrikbetrieben. Zudem übertragen wir produktionstechnische Lösungen in Anwendungsgebiete außerhalb der Industrie, etwa in die Bereiche Medizin, Verkehr und Sicherheit. Analog dazu gliedert sich das Institut in die sieben Geschäftsfelder Unternehmensmanagement, Virtuelle Produktentstehung, Produktionssysteme, Füge- und Beschichtungstechnik, Automatisierungstechnik, Qualitätsmanagement sowie Medizintechnik. Eine enge Zusammenarbeit der Geschäftsfelder ermöglicht die Bearbeitung auch sehr komplexer Themen.

Als Institut der Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft orientieren wir unsere Arbeit eng am Bedarf unserer Kunden und Partner: Mit markt- und praxisnaher FuE tragen wir dazu bei, ihre Wettbewerbsfähigkeit nachhaltig zu verbessern. Wir entwickeln zukunftsorientiert neue Lösungen und modernisieren, optimieren und erweitern existierende Technologien und Anwendungen. Dabei ist unser Ziel, ökonomische Erwägungen mit den Maximen Ressourceneffizienz, Nachhaltigkeit und Umweltverträglichkeit in Einklang zu bringen. Neben der Auftragsforschung entwickeln wir im Rahmen von Vorlaufprojekten innovative Konzepte für die Produktion von morgen. Dabei entstehende Basisinnovationen überführen wir gemeinsam mit Partnern in marktreife Produkte.

Wissenschaftliche Partner

Sie finden uns unter einem Dach mit dem Institut für Werkzeugmaschinen und Fabrikbetrieb IWF der TU Berlin im Produktionstechnischen Zentrum (PTZ) am Charlottenburger Spreebogen. Seit der Gründung des Fraunhofer IPK sind die beiden Institute durch eine enge Kooperation verbunden. Das versetzt das PTZ in die einzigartige Lage, die gesamte wissenschaftliche Innovationskette von der Grundlagenforschung über anwendungsorientierte Expertise bis hin zur Einsatzreife abdecken zu können. Über die gemeinsame Entwicklung von Prototypen etwa können effizient universitäre Forschungsergebnisse für die betriebliche Praxis aufbereitet und angeboten werden.

Weitere enge Partner des Fraunhofer IPK sind die BAM – Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung und die Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Das Fraunhofer IPK betreibt gemeinsam mit der Charité das »Berliner Zentrum für Mechatronische Medizintechnik« (BZMM). Darin arbeiten Ingenieure und Mediziner eng zusammen, sodass technische Entwicklung und klinische Evaluierung aus einer Hand angeboten werden können. Die Kooperation mit der BAM ermöglicht nicht nur die gemeinsame Nutzung technischer Anlagen, sondern auch eine ganzheitliche Beratung von Kunden und Partnern im Bereich Fügeverfahren, die Fragen der Wirtschaftlichkeit ebenso einschließt wie Sicherheitsaspekte.

Fraunhofer HHI does research and development in the areas of photonic components and networks, fiber optic sensor systems, mobile networks, and video coding and transmission. With our 300 employees and 200 students, we focus on enabling the continuous growth of internet traffic, and on developing new sensor technologies for various applications. Due to our long standing history in research, nowadays every internet user is in contact – without knowing – with our technologies: Every second bit transported in the internet is a H.264 or H.265 encoded movie. HHI is a major contributor to these standards, which are installed on about two billion devices. Every second bit transported in the internet also touches on of our photonic components, which serve as optoelectronic converters in the nodes of the network.


Gustav-Meyer-Allee 25
13355 Berlin
+49 (30) 46403-219

Fraunhofer IZM specializes in industry-oriented applied research. Fraunhofer IZM develops assembly and interconnection technology, also known as electronic/photonic packaging. Almost invisible and undervalued by many, electronic packaging is at the heart of every electronic application. Our technologies connect the individual components, protect components and devices from vibration and moisture, and reliably dissipate heat. Fraunhofer IZM thus ensures that electronic devices continue to function reliably in even the harshest conditions – we even integrate electronics into golf balls. Modern packaging technologies make developing smaller and smaller products possible. We process ICs thinner than a sheet of paper.

The business area Photonics combines Fraunhofer IZM’s skills and know-how to tackle challenges in telecommunication, data communication, light generation, materials processing and optical sensors.
We pursue different goals in each of these areas. In communication, broadband capacity, power efficiency, high, heterogeneous packaging density are the main focus, while in lighting, we aim to improve high power density, thermal management, multifunctional integration, wavelength conversion and beam guiding. In sensor technology, application-specific heterointegration of excitation source, sensor and analysis electronics take center-stage. However, three goals are pursued across all these areas: volume adjusted manufacturing technology, cost-efficiency and high yield.

Hahn-Meitner-Platz 1
14109 Berlin
+49 (0)30 / 8062-12945

Synchrotronstrahltechnik, non-university research, research and development, scientific facilities

Business focus
The Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin operates two scientific large scale facilities for investigating the structure and function of matter: the research reactor BER II for experiments with neutrons and the synchrotron radiation source BESSY II, producing an ultra bright photon beam ranging from Terahertz to hard X-rays.

Accelerator development and operation, development of photon and neutron optics Research: Magnetic Materials, Functional Materials, Materials for Solar Energy Technology Research Methods: High-resolution photoelectron spectroscopy (PES), Infrared and terahertz spectroscopy, Photoemission Electron Microscopy (PEEM), Soft X-ray Emission Spectroscopy (SXA, SXE, RIXS), X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy (XAS, NEXAFS, EXAFS), X-ray microscopy.

Technology Fields
Photonics and Optical Technologies

Wilhelminenhofstraße 75A
12459 Berlin
+49 (0)30 / 5019-3298

The HTW offers an impressive range of study programmes in five different departments spanning fields from engineering, computer science and economics, to culture and design. Traditional applied sciences like mechanical engineering, automotive engineering and business administration go hand-in-hand with more contemporary and innovative studies such as Information Technology/Networked Systems, Life Science Engineering, Environmental Engineering/Regenerative Energies and Microsystems Technology.

Let us consider the closer microsystems technology. Today this item is penetrating nearly every area of everyday life. Automotive technology, multimedia, medical engineering, bioengineering and genetic engineering, environmental protection – highly complex microsystems can be found everywhere. This study programme at the HTW Berlin runs for seven terms during one of which company placement is done. Apart from imparting students with solid skills in the core areas of engineering, it also provides access to modern simulation and CAD technology, computer science, electronics, sensors and microtechnology.

The HTW Berlin is regularly distinguished for the high quality of its study programmes. Students who wish to spend a part of their studies abroad will find that the HTW offers ideal conditions: it cultivates ties with over 100 other universities worldwide, thus maintaining strong bonds with collaborative partners.

The HTW encourages research and development projects on a wide range spectrum. Within Berlin, the Federal Republic of Germany and Europe, the HTW works together with small and medium-sized businesses, unions, administrations, associations, research and training institutions, and other individuals to fulfill these objectives and goals.

An der Sternwarte 16
14482 Potsdam
0331 7499 6229

The centre for innovation competence innoFSPEC Potsdam pursues multidisciplinary research in the field of innovative fibre-optical spectroscopy and sensing. As a joint initiative of the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) and the Physical Chemistry group of Potsdam University (UPPC), innoFSPEC unites competences in the areas of imaging multichannel spectroscopy, fibre-optical chemical sensing and multidimensional data processing. Aside from physical-chemical analysis of gases, nano- and microstructured materials like emulsions and suspensions, chemical and biotechnological processes as well as medical applications, astrophotonic components (e.g. complex Fibre-Bragg Gratings) for astrophysical applications are within the focus of interest. Also du to its excellent experimental facilities, innoFSPEC enjoys vivid collaborations with many regional, national and international partners from academia and industry alike.

Rudower Chaussee 31
12489 Berlin
030 6392 6503