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You will find here a selection of projects currently running at the University of Luxembourg.
Don’t hesitate to get more insight into research at the University and to contact the Communications Department.

When Cars Communicate

In ‘car-to-car communication’ researchers develop safety applications allowing cars to inform those following behind of an accident that has just happened or provide information on traffic density and thus enable exact calculations of the optimal route. Currently, the researchers are working on the project “MOVE”, which is designed to evaluate traffic information.

Traffic lights are usually operated using models that work perfectly for liquid fluids, but difficultly describe traffic. A new approach, called IP Math Packet, allows optimising traffic flow. The scientists at SnT do the math behind the simulations and experiments. The University has signed a partnership agreement with the postal and telecom service provider P&T Luxembourg, supplying the basis for communication in Europe through the GSM network, and with the French automobile and motorcycle manufacturer PSA Peugeot Citroen.

Green IT

The research project "Green IT", headed  by Prof. Dr. Pascal Bouvry of the Department of Computer Science, aims to provide a holistic autonomic energy-efficient solution to manage, provision, and administer the various resources of Cloud-Computing data/HPC centers. Some of the research challenges that will be tackled are the development of resource management and optimization methodologies as well as the development of autonomic resource management: The anytime anywhere slogan only will be effective when an autonomic management of resources can be achieved. The resource allocation methodologies developed must go further refinement such that the system at hand is self-healing, repairing, and optimizing.

Fighting Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's Disease (PD) affects about 1-3% of the population over the age of 65 years and is characterised by progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons. However, the molecular mechanisms leading to PD are not well understood. Aging is one of the main contributing factors, however genetic and environmental factors also play an important role in PD pathogenesis.

Researchers at the LCSB try to shed light on the molecular and cellular mechanisms of PD, thereby contributing to the development of new preventive or therapeutic strategies. A specific range of bioinformatics and systems biology approaches are used to develop a mathematical description and models of PD. This should support our attempts to understand the detailed molecular and cellular mechanisms of PD.

New Materials For Solar Cells

The Japanese electronics company TDK founded the TDK Europe chair „New materials for solar cells“ in 2006. This chair is filled by Prof. Dr. Susanne Siebentritt, head of the Laboratory for Photovoltaics at the University of Luxembourg. The laboratory focuses not only on the development of solar cells but also on furthering the physical understanding of the materials and interfaces involved in these solar cells. In 2009, the laboratory has made its first thin film solar cells. This new generation of solar cells is expected to be considerably cheaper because they need much less material and energy in their production than today’s photovoltaic modules.

The first solar cells made in Luxembourg are based on a semiconductor made of copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS) and made by a process with the potential for highest performance. As  solar cells based on CIGS have shown the highest efficiencies in research and in production,  the University works on the development of solar cells based on this material, as well as on novel materials that are promising for solar cell applications and do not contain indium.

How To Avoid Future Financial Crises

At the Luxembourg School of Finance of the University of Luxembourg, researchers evaluate, deal with and anticipate future financial crises. These projects have included market risk exposure in the hedge fund industry, credit risk exposure in the securitization of loans to small and medium-sized enterprises, and market liquidity risk exposure, as well as the recent involvements of the central bank in financial stability. To curb future crises, LSF researchers have suggested contingent capital as an alternative financing for the banking industry. In the case of default, contingent capital bonds are converted by design to increase equity capital and thus decrease the potential needs of bailouts by the tax payer.

The Challenges Of Multilingualism

Today, Luxembourg counts the highest number of resident foreigners in the EU with 43.7 percent, most of whom are from Portugal, France, Italy and Belgium. As a result, the languages spoken in families rarely coincide with the three institutionalised languages that children are taught and have to use in school.

Our researchers study how our late modern societies attempt to ‘manage’ the linguistic and cultural diversity in their midst. They examine the assumptions and visions underlying the Luxembourgish educational system (as well as other educational systems) and explore numerous related questions including the following: What, for instance, are the possibilities offered by flexible programmes of simultaneous literacy or ‘biliteracy’? And if it is true, that basic literacy is best taught in a language that children speak fluently and that this is the key to educational success – how does this affect the social integration in a multilingual and multicultural society?

Media Psychology

What are the effects of medial entertainment on emotions and behavior? Dr. André Melzer is currently researching the effects of violent online games, as well as pro-social, i.e. “good” entertainment. He is testing aggression and violence prevention strategies such as parental mediation and finally, he is studying the lasting impression of computer games on users and how these memories influence their behavior.