Quality testing and material development: Fraunhofer IMWS supports the fight against the coronavirus pandemic

The Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS is using its materials expertise to help combat the COVID 19 pandemic. The institute is currently working together with nine other Fraunhofer institutes across Germany on the development of novel protective textiles.

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Pulsating wound dressings to help extensive wounds heal more quickly

Vacuum and oxygen therapy are currently established methods for the treatment of chronic large-area wounds. Together with 1+ Steri Medizinprodukte GmbH from Halberstadt and the Medical Faculty of MLU, the Fraunhofer IMWS is researching an impulse drainage system, which, as a pulsating flexible wound dressing, is intended to heal small and large-area wounds more quickly by means of innovative coatings.

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How Do We Want to Run Our Economy and Production?

The sewage treatment plant becomes a vegetable farm, biobased substances recovered from waste prevent oxidative spoilage in food packaging or provide water-repellent coatings on functional textiles that do not harm humans or the environment. In the EVOBIO project, 19 Fraunhofer institutes are working on solutions for a sustainable economy.

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Self-organizing peptide is proven to strengthen dental enamel: Award for University of Marburg and Fraunhofer IMWS

Fixed braces can lead to a stronger demineralization of enamel at their edges. A combination of peptide P11-4 and fluoride can help to prevent this, according to a study by the University of Marburg and the Fraunhofer Institute IMWS.

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Help for a dry mouth

A chronically dry mouth is a risk to dental health. Skinomics and the Fraunhofer IMWS want to create a remedy.

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Fraunhofer IMWS supports the development of treatment methods for dentin hypersensitivity

When cold or hot food and drinks, sweets, sour or salty foods cause pain in the teeth, this is called dentine hypersensitivity. On behalf of Omya International AG, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS tested functional mineral particles that have desensitizing properties in a toothpaste and can thus prevent symptoms.

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Periodontal disease: Patent for new treatment method

New biodegradable rods promise to provide better treatment for periodontal disease. Researchers from the Institute of Pharmacy at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have re-combined an already approved active ingredient and filed for a patent for their invention together with two Fraunhofer Institutes from Halle.

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Health Care

Zahnpasta Einfluss Zahnschmelz Auswirkungen
© Fraunhofer IMWS
Maria Morawietz uses a brushing machine to examine the mechanical impact that dental cleansers have on teeth.

Thanks to our interdisciplinary expertise in materials and life sciences, we are in a position to provide industrial customers with scientific and technical advice on issues in the fields of medicine, care, and the environment and conduct research and development projects. Our focus here lies on materials research for dental and personal care products, the development and characterization of biomaterials for medical devices and the biofunctionalization of surfaces.

We characterize and assess materials and products with regard to their functionality, support the screening of new active substances and design customized models to shed light on modes of action and interactions with biological surfaces. We also develop new materials with improved structure and surface compatibility and customized functionality for medical applications and tissue engineering, and offer methods of modifying surfaces that come into contact with biological materials.

In addition to basic and, above all, application-oriented research in the public sector, we support our industrial partners from research and development and quality control through to claim support and assistance with marketing based on scientific findings.

Our expertise and range of methods include, among other things:


General microstructure and surface analysis

High-resolution microscopy (SEM, TEM, EDX, AFM, µX-Ray CT, XRM, Nano-XRM, CLSM)

Surface analysis (XPS, ToF-SIMS)

Mechanical assessment (hardness determination, DMA, numerical simulation (FEM))

Chemical analyses (mass spectrometry, FTIR spectroscopy)


Tests specific to oral care and dentistry

Abrasion measurements (enamel, dentin)

Dental discoloration

Analysis of cleaning

Experimental brush simulation

Assessment of dentinal tubule occlusion

Acid stability

Assessment of de-mineralization and remineralization processes


Skin care and protein-based materials


Development of wound dressing materials (e.g. protein nonwovens, protein sponges)

Development and assessment of in vitro skin models

Biomimetic coatings for implant materials

Molecular structural analysis by means of organic mass spectrometry with a focus on structural proteins

Assessment of biological interactions between materials


Surface coating and functionalization

Chemical and physical vapor deposition

Plasma technologies on a laboratory scale

Wet-chemical coating processes

Surface structuring

Morphological, physical and chemical surface characterization