EU project Diaspora

Abu Sebastian
Martin Salinga

DIASPORA project

DIASPORA is a four-year collaboration between RWTH Aachen University and IBM Research – Zurich within the "industry-academia partnerships and pathways" program (IAPP), funded by the European Commission.

Industry-Academia Partnerships & Pathway

The Industry-Academia Partnerships & Pathways (IAPP) is a Marie Curie Action that seeks to enhance cooperation between public research organizations and private commercial enterprises based on longer-term cooperation program to increase knowledge sharing and mutual understanding in both industrial and academic sectors. Participants in an IAPP are one or more research organizations (e.g. universities) and one or more commercial enterprises that propose a joint research project within which transfer of knowledge takes place. This transfer of knowledge is reached primarily through staff secondments (staff exchanges).


The main objectives of Diaspora are so-called phase-change materials, which are currently a promising class of materials to be used as the next generation of memory; we aim to understand the underlying physics of the remarkable properties of these materials.

    Events & activities

  • August 2018
    Monatomic phase change memory
    M. Salinga et al.
    Nature Materials 17(8), 681–685, 2018.
    Cover NaT Mat
  • July 2018
    Keep it Simple: Towards Single-Elemental Phase Change Memory,” IBM Research blog article.
  • September 2017
    Poster Presentations:
    Benedikt Kersting “Influence of thermal conditions on melt-quenching nanoscale PCM devices”
    Martin Salinga “Supercooled Liquid and Glass Formation in Phase Change Materials,”
    EPCOS, Aachen, Germany.
  • July 2017
    Talk: Martin Salinga, “Glass Forming Ability in Complex Systems,” Wisla, Poland.
  • May 2017
    Talk: Martin Salinga, “Novel computer memory based upon chalcogenide glasses,” GOMD Meeting 2017, Waikoloa, Hawaii, USA.
  • October 2016
    Martin Salinga, “Threshold Switching in amorphous chalcogenides,” International Workshop on Resistive Memories 2016, Stanford University, USA.
  • September 2016
    Project Leader Martin Salinga was invited to EPCOS conference in Cambridge to talk about the latest research in the project.
  • August/September 2016
    The team in Aachen is happy to be supported by two new post-docs Yingting Set and Tobechukwu Joshua Obodo as well as pre-doc Benedikt Kersting! Learn more about them on our Team page.
  • August 2016
    Matthias Kaes and Martin Salinga published their latest results on the impact of defect occupation on electrical conduction, which can be found at Scientific Reports.
  • April 2016
    Matthias Kaes attended this year’s MRS spring meeting in Phoenix, Arizona. Find the program of the “Phase-Change Materials and Applications” session, including his abstract on the MRS website.
  • March 2016
    For part of the outreach activities in Diaspora, Martin Ruetten visited an advanced physics course at his former high school in Erkelenz, Germany. He talked about his research within Diaspora as well as challenges on the way to becoming a physicist.
  • February 2016
    We are happy to welcome Vishal Jagtap on board! He will join the Diaspora team in Aachen to enrich the project as a postdoctoral researcher.
  • January 2016
    Fruitful discussions within the Diaspora project contributed to the latest paper by Manuel Le Gallo et al., who investigated threshold switching in nanoscale devices. The study can be found in the Journal of Applied Physics and a related article in ee times.
  • December 2015
    Martin Ruetten's article featuring new insights into the mechanism of resistance drift can now be found online at Scientific Reports.
  • October 2015
    Matthias Kaes published his latest results on high-field conduction in phase change materials in the Journal of Applied Physics.
  • September 2015
    Manuel le Gallo's new paper on transport modelling in amorphous phase change materials is now available on the New Journal of Physics website.
  • September 2015
    Martin Ruetten attended the E\PCOS 2015 Symposium in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and gave a talk on the latest results of his drift studies.
  • June 2015
    Spending one year at IBM Research – Zurich as an early stage researcher, Martin Ruetten was featured in a short video clip about Diaspora and phase change memory as its main objective.
  • April 2015
    Matthias Kaes and Manuel Le Gallo went to San Francisco, California, to present new results at the 2015 MRS Spring Meeting.
    Learn more about the program of the phase change materials session.
  • December 2014
    Martin Wimmer published a paper in Frontiers in Physics giving new insight into the mechanisms of resistance drift in phase-change materials.
  • September 2014
    Manuel Le Gallo and Martin Ruetten attended the E\PCOS 2014 Symposium in Marseille, France, to give talks about the recent work.
  • June 2014
    Matthias Kaes and Daniel Krebs were interviewed for the IBM Research News Blog about Diaspora and Matthias' experience at IBM Research – Zurich.