Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

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Karlsruhe Institute of Technology exists as legal entity since October 1st, 2009. It is the merger of Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH and Universität Karlsruhe (TH), identified as one of the first three German top universities in the frame of the German Excellence Initiative in 2006. KIT is funded jointly by the Federal Republic of Germany and the State of Baden-Württemberg with about 8'800 employees and an annual budget of about 700 million Euros. At the present about 20'000 students are enrolled in KIT. KIT bundles the missions of both precursory institutions: A university of the state of Baden-Württemberg with teaching and research tasks and a large-scale research institution of the Helmholtz Association conducting program-oriented provident research on behalf of the Federal Republic of Germany. Within these missions, KIT is operating along the three strategic fields of action of research, teaching, and innovation.

Biomedical Research

Biomedical research at KIT focuses on the identification of genetic and non-genetic (environment, living conditions, etc.) causes of complex diseases. Work concentrates on the development of cancer, the formation of cancer metastases, and the control of embryogenesis. The research on the features of cancer and embryonic cells are not only of theoretical interest but may be of crucial importance to the development of therapeutic strategies. For this aim DNA chip technology is developed and applied as well as automated determination of gene profiles in cells and investigation of protein interactions. Developing new biophotonic systems based on nano and micro structures will contribute positively to a decrease in health care costs.

Nano- and Microscale Research and Technology

Research in nano- and microscale technology at KIT aims at developing application-tailored solutions at the interface of microsystem engineering and nanotechnology. This work gives major impulses to technical innovations in a variety of industrial sectors. It plays a key role in implementing new physical, chemical or biological effects and functionalities as well as novel materials. The interdisciplinary approach is based on a pool of technologies comprising mechanical, optical, magnetic, fluidic, electrical, materials science, and information technology competences. Thus, it combines very different disciplines in both fundamental science and application oriented developments for a multiplicity of industrial and socially relevant application fields.

In the field of microtechnology KIT’s research is focused on non silicon materials processing and application oriented development in micro fluidics, micro process engineering, and photonics.

Optics and Photonics

In photonics, micro optics and related process development about 150 people are working in both, basic research as well as covering the entire development chain from materials tailoring, simulation, prototyping, mastering, characterization, packaging, reliability issues and small series fabrication.

One research focus is on polymer micro optics. With its unique infrastructure KIT offers a wide variety of technological available lithography systems on one site in order to do research on all different kinds of active and passive optical elements and systems: a high-end e-beam writer, several beamlines for X-ray-lithography at the local synchrotron light source, two- and three-dimensional laser lithography, and conventional mask based UV-lithography, to name a few.

Apart from the development and optimization of high aspect ratio fabrication techniques (e.g. LIGA technique) micro optical systems are developed with a view on mid term industrial applications in the sensor field. Therefore there is a strong activity on micro replication techniques in order to allow for transfer to industrial mass fabrication.

Some 80 PhD students of KIT are members of the interdisciplinary graduate Karlsruhe School of Optics and Photonics (www.ksop.de).


Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Kaiserstrasse 12
76131 Karlsruhe




Contact person

Dr.-Ing. Timo Mappes