Knowledge on the atomic scale structure, processes and properties of advanced materials are a prerequisite for improving their properties and their behaviour in technological applications in a broad range of disciplines. Atomic scale characterisation makes it possible to shorten development cycles, improve the lifetime and enable new technological innovations. Furthermore, knowledge on structural behaviour and atomic scale mechanisms provides important input for modelling and simulation, in particular in the framework of the recent concepts on ‘integrated computational materials engineering’ (ICME).
The corresponding institutes and laboratories at the five IDEA League Universities belong to the internationally leading institutions in this field. Their activities are highly inter- and cross-disciplinary and address a broad range of materials classes and cutting-edge characterisation facilities. The aim of the School was to nucleate a sustainable network for exchange of human resources and competencies between the individual locations.