Nanoscale ferroelectrics laboratory

The Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics is a subdivision of Ural Federal University, which engages in educational, scientific, innovative, social and educational activities. The fundamental nature, a lot of practical tasks, involvement of scientists, and the students’ participation in scientific activities are the keys elements of our education.


The integration of education and research ensures the competitiveness of graduates in employment market in the field of natural science and related applied areas. An important task of the Institute is to attract talented young people to form a community of teachers, students and graduates.


Our student community includes winners and prize-winners of National Olympiads and competitions in Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Astronomy, and prize-winners of world championships in programming and information security.


Our graduates are experts in such fields as high technology, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, space, military defence, clinical diagnostics and genetics. They work in institutions of the Russian Academy of Sciences, research and expert laboratories, industrial corporations, leading computer companies and universities in Russia and abroad.


The Institute conducts fundamental and applied research, carries out expertise in different areas, including education. It integrates specialists in the international academic community, initiates and implements international research projects. The Institute provides work centres for collective use and popularizes scientific knowledge among the population. The main research areas of the Institute are:


• Mathematical and computer modelling of physicochemical processes in multiphase media;

• Mathematical modelling in physiology and medicine;

• Theory of automata and formal languages;

• Advanced materials, nanotechnology and physical instrument making;

• Bioresources, biotechnologies, physiology and fundamental medicine, bioinformatics;

• Information and telecommunication systems;

• Information processing and analysis technologies;

• Space physics.


The research work is based in the departments, laboratories, Research Institute of Physics and Applied Mathematics, research and educational centres, collective use centres, Kourovka Astronomical Observatory, Botanical Garden, Biological Station, Centre for Fundamental Biotechnology and Bioengineering.


Kholkin International Head

Dr. Andrei Kholkin

Head of Functional Imaging and Nanomaterials Laboratory of CICECO

University of Aveiro


ShurUrFU Head

Dr. Vladimir Shur

Principal researcher and Professor

Director of Ural Center for Shared Use “Modern Nanotechnologies”

Institute of Natural Sciences

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The NANOFER laboratory is a subdivision of the UrFU Institute of Natural Sciences. It interacts with the ferroelectrics laboratory and the Ural Center for Shared Use "Modern Nanotechnologies" at UrFU. The international head of the laboratory Andrei Kholkin is also the head of the Functional Imaging and Nanomaterials Laboratory at the University of Aveiro, Portugal (number of publications - 400, citation index - more than 4000, h-index - 37). The aim of NANOFER activity is the creation and study of advanced nanostructured ferroelectric and related materials, ion conductors and bio materials and development of the methods for visualization of their functional properties.

nanoThe following major results have been achieved:

The International Conference “Piezoresponse Forсe Microscopy and Nanoscale Phenomena in Polar Materials” (PFM-2014) and the International Youth Conference “Functional Imaging of Nanomaterials” were held in Ekaterinburg with the participation of leading international scientists from 18 countries.   

UrFU was included as an associate partner in the international project NANOMOTION (Nanoelectromechanical motion in functional materials), funded by the EU under the European Framework Program FP7.   

The NANOFER members have won grants of the Russian Science Foundation, OPTEK, and the President of the Russian Federation.   

Scientists from the University of Minho (Portugal), University College Dublin (Ireland), and the University of Duisburg-Essen (Germany) have visited the laboratory.   

In turn, NANOFER members underwent training at the University of Washington (USA), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (USA), University of Aveiro (Portugal), and the University of Duisburg-Essen (Germany).   

A set of electronic educational courses "Functional imaging using scanning probe microscopy" was developed.     

“I was very much impressed with the technical skills of UrFU staff such as deep mathematical background, excellent programming capabilities, and general understanding of ferroelectric phenomena. Not to mention the state-of-art equipment, such as lithography, focused ion beam etching, etc. The technical staff is always nice and extremely efficient in solving any problems.”

Dr. Andrei Kholkin