They offer world-class material analysis

The Tandem Laboratory is the Nordic region’s largest research infrastructure for ion beam-based analysis and modification of materials. The instrumentation enables world-leading operations in everything from medicine to materials technology.

Materials analysis is a high-profile, strategic research area at Uppsala University, and in the front line is the Tandem Laboratory (which also goes by the name Accelerator-based Ion Technology Center). The laboratory is a national research infrastructure, with both national and international partners.

– World-leading operations in ion beam technology and ion beam-based material analysis are conducted here. We are the largest in the Nordic region in our area and have a very broad cutting-edge expertise and the latest equipment. There are few laboratories in the world that match us, says Daniel Primetzhofer, director of the laboratory and adds:

– Some of our technicians can deliver information at the nanometer level about the chemical compositions of a material – without destroying it. Our methods have a unique ability to track even light elements such as hydrogen or lithium, which gives us the opportunity to analyze, for example, material systems used for smart windows or hydrogen storage. The results can then be used to improve the materials.

Ongoing research conducted at the Tandem Laboratory

Versatile technology and short lead times

Using accelerator mass spectrometry (a very versatile ion beam-based technique), the content of biological samples is determined at the laboratory carbon 14. It provides the opportunity to date human tissue and the technology is also successfully applied in biology, archeology and geology.

The laboratory’s users consist of research groups, national and international industrial companies, start-up companies, authorities and even private individuals. Both research and commissioned projects are conducted together with industry in a number of different areas.

– Thanks to the size of our infrastructure, we can offer short lead times. From an initial contact until the measurement is performed, in good cases it takes less than three weeks. This is another reason why our services are requested annually by hundreds of users, says Daniel Primetzhofer.

Take a tour of one of the Tandem Laboratory’s machines

They meet the demands of the future

The tandem laboratory was founded as early as 1968 and in recent years their development has accelerated. Today, they provide four particle accelerators for non-destructive material analysis at the nanometer level, ion irradiation and mass spectrometry, and are currently building a fifth system.

– Our main focus is to meet the demands of the future from research as well as business and government. We develop our infrastructure continuously with support from both the Swedish Research Council and the Foundation for Strategic Research, which means that we are constantly at the forefront, concludes Daniel Primetzhofer.


The Tandem Laboratory is a special institution within the Faculty of Science and Technology at Uppsala University and a national infrastructure. They conduct advanced ion beam-based material analysis and material modification in a wide range of fields, from basic scientific research to practical applications for industry and society. The laboratory is a national infrastructure supported by VR-RFI and SSF. Read more here!

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