Division Head: Prof. Wojciech Kwiatek
tel: +48 12 662 8235
The main scientific activity of the Division is in the fields of life and health, energy and environmental hazards, and physical properties of low-dimensional materials.
In the field of energy and civilization hazards, a wide range of methods is applied. Neutron transport physics is applied to thermonuclear plasma diagnostics, a crucial technique for future sources of energy- thermonuclear reactors of tokamak or stellarator types. Neutron transport physics methods are being developed for applications in geophysical prospecting of hydrocarbons, the classical energy sources. Investigations concerning civilization hazards involve natural and artificial radioactivity in the environment (personal and environmental dosimetry, migration of radionuclides and radon in the environment, monitoring of greenhouse gases and of environmental pollution by toxic trace elements and their health impact , including carcinogenesis), studies of environmental markers (e.g. of noble gases, CFCs and SF6 as hydrological markers, lichens as phytomarkers), identification of radioactive sources and of illicit trafficking of hazardous materials (using neutron detection methods), and the technology of magnetic water treatment.
Life and health research is focused on medical physics and dosimetry for proton radiotherapy and on biomedical applications (effects of ionising radiation on living cells, such as mutations of DNA, chromosome damage, deformability and cell adhesive properties). Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), using a wide range of nuclear spectroscopic methods, atomic force microscopy (AFM), and gas chromatography are being developed. The fluorescence in situ hybridization technique (FISH) and single cell gel electrophoresis assay (Comet) are the main biological methods and techniques applied in this research.
Low-dimensional materials research concerns analysis of the physical, chemical and mechanical properties of thin films, coatings and nanostructures. Several methods of manufacturing nanomaterials, such as molecular beam epitaxy, chemical vapour deposition, ion beam assisted deposition and hybrid techniques, are applied. In particular, effects such as giant magnetoresistance, interlayer exchange coupling and perpendicular magnetic anisotropy in ultra-thin films and nanostructures are studied.