Research profile

Moving knowledge for a better world

At FAU, our motto of moving knowledge expresses our wish to pull together and push ahead with our central priorities for the future – freedom and responsibility, life and health, sustainability and resilience. We take a pioneering and future-oriented approach to connect and pool interdisciplinary knowledge of relevance to society. Our agile architecture consisting of FAU research clusters, research centers and competence centers form the foundation for research in our key research priorities and offer researchers a unique platform to address the major challenges of our current times.

Researchers at work

FAU Profile Centers

Profile Centers shape the research profile of FAU with a wide range of cutting-edge research projects, both in collaborative research and excellent individual research. They are limited to a duration of seven years, in order to effectively support the University’s strategic objectives.

FAU Profile Center Immunomedicine (FAU I-Med)

The objective of the FAU Profile Center Immunomedicine is to conduct research into immunology and how it can be applied in clinical practice. The center investigates the fundamental mechanisms and dysfunctions of the immune system and develops personalized methods for the prevention, diagnosis and therapy of infectious diseases, cancer and autoimmune diseases.

FAU Profile Center Light.Matter.Quantum Technologies (FAU LMQ)

The scientific and technological development of our society is unimaginable without photonics and electronics, which form the backbone of our current information technology. In recent years, the focus at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) has turned to the joint consideration of light and matter, which will make many new phenomena and technologies comprehensible and thus form the basis for the key technologies of the 21st century. This requires substantial efforts in fundamental as well as applied research, which will be consolidated in the new FAU Profile Center Light.Matter.Quantum Technologies at FAU.

FAU Profile Center Medical Engineering (FAU MT)

Research into medical engineering has been extremely important at FAU for several decades. Several hundred research staff at FAU and Universitätsklinikum Erlangen from all faculties and institutes in medical engineering research and teaching contribute to the leading edge cluster Medical Valley in the Nuremberg Metropolitan Region. The profile center consolidates activities in the key research priority of medical engineering and its tasks include coordinating advisory services for funding and entrepreneurship, as well as setting up degree programs or networking events.

FAU Profile Center New Materials and Processes (FAU NMP)

The FAU Profile Center New Materials and Processes (NMP) promotes and strengthens innovative interdisciplinary research in FAU’s New Materials and Processes key research priority. It identifies new research topics geared to the future and promotes initiatives that further develop the top international and national ranking of this key research priority and the research environment in Erlangen and Nuremberg.

FAU Profile Center Solar (FAU Solar)

FAU Solar researches into strategies to overcome the limitations of converting solar energy into electricity and is accelerating the development of semiconductors that can be printed at low temperatures. The aim is to produce cheap, green solar electricity at a large scale and at the highest output without damaging the environment. The center pursues a holistic optimization strategy based on a digital model of the entire value chain. FAU Solar combines top-level research in engineering, science, data science and business and economics. FAU Solar’s research is an important component of strategic development at FAU and closely linked to other key research priorities.

Researcher in the lab

FAU Research Centers

Research Centers have close links with the higher-level key research priorities at FAU and are involved in at least one collaborative project. Research Centers are also limited to a duration of seven years and have the opportunity during this time to establish their research which may be extended as a Profile Center.

FAU Research Center for Human Rights Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU CHREN)

The interdisciplinary work of the FAU Research Center for Human Rights Erlangen-Nürnberg focuses on current questions regarding human rights in theory and in practice. In a regional context, the center investigates the human rights requirements for politics in Bavaria. The center campaigns for the innovative development of international human rights protection while considering contemporary discourse and developments. The aim of FAU CHREN’s work is to strengthen the protection of human rights and to drive forward the universal implementation of these rights.

Link to the FAU Research Center for Human Rights Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU CHREN) website

FAU Research Center Embedded Systems Initiative (FAU ESI)

The FAU Research Center Embedded Systems Initiative has a pioneering role in fundamental research for future electronic embedded hardware and software systems. Its research activities include embedded AI, post-silicon technologies and open source hardware. As an incubator, FAU ESI promotes design automation and the design of new applications for these areas. The Center’s innovative approaches to research have the potential to produce groundbreaking developments in these areas and to shape the future of the electronics and technology sectors.

Link to the website of the FAU Research Center Embedded Systems Initiative

FAU Research Center Mathematics of Data (FAU MoD)

At the FAU Research Center for Mathematics of Data (FAU MoD), researchers from various FAU institutions, the Max Planck Center for Physics and Medicine and the ADA Lovelace Center from the Fraunhofer IIS work together to gain a better understanding of the mathematics of large and complex volumes of data. FAU MoD combines expertise and experience from the area of data science with applied mathematics, scientific computing and artificial intelligence in order to tackle the challenges posed by the wide scope of modern research and various innovative industrial sectors.

MoD and the globally connected Nuremberg Metropolitan Region are making a significant contribution to modern research in the area of ‘Mathematics of Data’.

Go to the website of the FAU Research Center for Mathematics of Data

FAU Research Center New Bioactive Compounds (FAU NeW)

The goal of FAU NeW is to connect, strengthen and improve the focus of interdisciplinary work in the areas of materials, target areas, mechanisms, and bioanalysis. In addition to ongoing research projects and modules with close links to practical applications, the research center provides a structured graduate program as well as core facilities for mass spectrometry/formulation for life sciences.

Press release about the launch of the FAU Research Center New Bioactive Compounds

Researcher at work

FAU Competence Center

A Competence Center is a research institution that has a cross-sectional function and provides expertise and support from basic research to the development of methods and instrumentation for the entire range of research carried out at FAU.

FAU Competence Center Engineering of Advanced Materials (FAU EAM)

The FAU Competence Center Engineering of Advanced Materials (EAM) further develops scientific methods and processes in FAU’s key research priority New Materials and Processes and provides a wide range of infrastructure, expertise and services. It is divided into seven specialist departments and the Graduate School of Engineering of Advanced Materials (GS EAM).

Go to the website of the FAU Competence Center Engineering of Advanced Materials

Center for Applied Philosophy of Science and Key Qualifications (ZiWiS)(FAU ZIWIS)

FAU ZIWIS focuses on the innovative area of applied philosophy of science, which examines the theoretical and practical preconditions and consequences of science as a whole, i.e. the history, ethics and philosophy of science. Its research is published via an inter-faculty platform and used in collaborative projects. FAU ZIWIS also provides teaching resources and networking opportunities for students and researchers at FAU and offers key qualifications (SQ).

Go to the website of the Center for Applied Philosophy of Science and Key Qualifications

FAU Competence Center Optical Imaging Center Erlangen (OICE)

The FAU Competence Center Optical Imaging Center Erlangen (FAU OICE) was established in 2012 as one of the central institutions at FAU. It was founded based on the close collaboration between FAU and the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light (MPL). OICE’s mission is to provide and coordinate access to high-end optical microscopes in its Core Facility Unit (CFU) and to develop new microscope systems and techniques in its Exploratory Research Unit (ERU). The Educational Training Unit (ETU) provides training for students and researchers in placements and seminars.

Go to the website of the FAU Competence Center Optical Imaging Center Erlangen

FAU Competence Center for Research Data and Information (FAU CDI)

FAU’s Competence Center for Research Data and Information (CDI) is a central research institution that provides support to all researchers at the University and at Universitätsklinikum Erlangen with questions and tasks regarding research data management and the CRIS Research Information System. This support includes providing advice with funding applications as well as services for handling research data and e-research projects.

Go to the website of the FAU Competence Center for Research Data and Information

FAU Competence Center for Scientific Computing (FAU CSC)

FAU’s Competence Center for Scientific Computing (FAU CSC) is the competence center for scientific computing at FAU. It bundles the expertise and experience of more than 40 research institutions at the University. This makes the CSC a unique interdisciplinary cooperation platform that provides the right environment for even the most complex research tasks in numeric simulation and scientific computing.

Go to the website of the FAU Competence Center for Scientific Computing

Research across subject boundaries

Female researcher working with equipment
Image: FAU/Anna Thiessen

With its wide spectrum of subjects, FAU has the potential to pool research topics across subject boundaries and to bridge the gap to current pressing issues. As one of the largest research institutions in Germany, we are home to more than 4,000 researchers who dedicate their passion and innovation to carrying out research in 8 key research priorities, 5 research clusters, 4 research centers, 5 competence centers and many other projects, all aimed at exploring the major questions we face in our world today.

Substantial third-party funding for research

With nearly 250 million euros in third-party funding, FAU is in a very strong position for both individual and collaborative research. At the current time, FAU is involved in 23 collaborative research centers, 16 research training groups, 19 DFG research units and 51 DFG priority programs, with FAU researchers often assuming the role of spokesperson. Researchers at the University are regularly awarded prizes in recognition of their outstanding performance. FAU is consistently ranked highly in both national and international rankings.

Excellent young researcher support

With our own programs such as the FAU head of junior research group concept or the ENET excellence track for high potentials, FAU recognizes the importance of investing in effective support for young researchers.