Photo: Bjørn Lymann Jespersen

Young researchers receive millions from the Danish Council for Independent Research

Monday 23 Feb 15
by Bjørn Lymann Jespersen

Eight researchers receive a total of DKK 19.6 million to boost their research. The postdoc grants will be allocated to research in the categories ‘Technology and Production’ and ‘Health and disease’.

The annual postdoc grants from the Danish Council for Independent Research has resulted in DKK 19.6 million for researchers from DTU. The funds have been allocated to a total of eight researchers, including seven in the category ‘Technology and Production’, and one in ‘Health and disease’. The grants have primarily been awarded to young research talents to ensure that they are able to deliver research at a high international level.

Out of a field of applicants of 600, a total of 68 researchers from Danish universities will receive postdoc grants this year. Scholarships totalling DKK 130 million were awarded. Every year, the Danish Council for Independent Research awards around DKK 1.2 billion to Danish research.

Read about all the projects here:

Better cancer treatment

The project will investigate whether our immune system can be taught to recognize mutations on the surface of cancer cells. If the project is successful, it will be easier to focus the immune system's attack on cancer cells, thereby ensuring new treatment strategies for lung cancer, for example.

Grant recipient: Sunil Kumar Saini
Department: DTU Vet
Amount: DKK 2,043,420.

New functional optical fibres

The project will produce new optical fibres in the mid-infrared field. These fibres are particularly useful for measurement and analysis of, for example, cancer, food, and air pollution. In addition, they will offer key knowledge about fibre optics in Denmark.

Grant recipient: Christos Markos
Department: DTU Fotonik
Amount: DKK 2,903,399.


The idea of the project is to develop a new self-perpetuating silicone material which is free of reinforcing filling substances. In this way, the material will be softer, lighter, and more resilient and easier to recycle than commercial silicone materials.

Grant recipient: Frederikke Bahrt
Department: DTU Chemical Engineering
Amount: DKK 3,019,444.

Better performance of small devices

Mobile phones, headsets, and hearing aids are becoming ever smaller, making it more difficult to get the devices to perform optimally. The project will attempt to improve the performance of these devices by creating new, so-called band gap materials that may potentially have a major impact—scientifically and for their industrial applications.

Grant recipient: Junghwan Kook
Department: DTU Electrical Engineering
Amount: DKK 1,998,677.

Train cells to fight cancer

In this project, bioinformatics analyses of genetic data are used to optimize both cancer treatment efficiency and safety. This means, among other things, that cells in a blood sample can be trained to attack cancer.

Grant recipient: Lars Rønn Olsen
Department: DTU Systems Biology
Amount: DKK 1,762,944.

High-resolution microscopy

This project is about being able to measure the conductivity of materials with a spacious resolution of less than 100 nm using Laser Terahertz Emission Microscopy (LTEM) and a sharp metal needle that can concentrate the electric field down to nano-scale level. This will provide an insight into nanostructures that have previously been been impossible to study. The research will be conducted in collaboration with Brown University.

Grant recipient: Pernille Klarskov Pedersen
Department: DTU Fotonik
Amount: DKK 2,320,834.

Natural compound libraries

The project will develop new technology for synthesis and development of natural substance-like compound libraries that are less time-consuming to produce than previously. The manufactured compound libraries can be used to fight cancer, inflammation, infection, neurological and autoimmune diseases, and to discover new drugs. The research will be conducted in collaboration with the Scripps Research Institute.

Grant recipient: Rico Petersen
Department: DTU Chemistry
Amount: DKK 3,087,364.

Squeezed light provides better images

The project will reduce the noise in advanced microscopes by using squeezed light. The production of squeezed light is advanced, but is characterized in that the photons in the light are more structured than in conventional laser light, which gives less noise in the images. The noise can be reduced by a factor of 10 compared with a classic laser-based microscope.

Grant recipient: Tobias Gehring
Department: DTU Physics
Amount: DKK 2,494,323