Mirror symmetry is a manifestation of string theory that predicts a certain symmetry between complex geometry and symplectic geometry. Mirror symmetry is justified on physical grounds but makes nonetheless strong and testable predictions about purely mathematical concepts. A celebrated example is the prediction by physicists of the number of rational curves of a given degree in a generic quintic threefold which went far beyond classical enumerative geometry. The main actor in this proposal is the "Stringy Kähler Moduli Space" which is the moduli space of complex structures of the mirror partner of a Calabi-Yau manifold. The SKMS is not rigorously defined as mirror symmetry itself is not rigorous, but in many cases there are precise heuristics available to characterize it. Mirror symmetry predicts the existence of an action of the fundamental group of the SKMS on the derived category of coherent sheaves of a Calabi-Yau manifold. This prediction has only been verified in a limited number of cases. We will attempt to confirm the prediction for algebraic varieties occurring in geometric invariant theory and the minimal model program. Our main approach will be the construction of a perverse schober on a partial compactification of the SKMS. The existence of such a schober does not only confirm, but also clarifies the predicted action as it is now becomes the result of ``wall crossing'', i.e. moving outside the SKMS itself. To reach our objective we will approach the SKMS from different angles, most notably through its relation with the moduli space of stability conditions.
Thin films comprising a blend of electron donating (D) and electron accepting (A) molecules are ubiquitous in organic electronic devices. At the D-A interfaces, intermolecular charge-transfer (CT) states form, in which an electron is transferred from D to A. Electrical doping (p- and n-type) involves ground-state CT from dopant to host and results in increased conductivities of the host organic semiconductor. Furthermore, the performances of organic solar cells, photodetectors and light emitting diodes depend crucially on D-A interfaces where the CT state is an excited state, mediating between photons and free charge carriers. New applications of intermolecular CT states, such as transparent conductors, artificial synapses, biosensors, organic persistent luminescent materials and low cost narrowband near-infrared sensors have emerged in the past years, and there is clearly potential for additional innovation. However, current progress is hampered by a lack of understanding of the fundamental properties of intermolecular CT states and their decay and dissociation mechanisms. ConTROL aims to fill this knowledge gap and link device performance to molecular parameters of D-A interfaces. Electro-optical properties will be tuned by molecular design and appropriate D-A selection, as well as by weak and strong interactions with the opto-electronic device’s optical cavity. The knowledge generated will not merely result in improved performance of existing organic electronic devices, but new avenues and novel exciting applications of intermolecular CT states will be demonstrated.
The investigation of processes that trigger cross-species transmission (‘spillover’) is central to disease ecology and epidemiology. Many infectious diseases in humans and domestic animals have emerged from successful jumps from wildlife hosts. The interactions of coinfecting pathogens within the same host are considered to be important in these spillover processes. However, despite the relevance of coinfections, little is known about the copathogen dynamics in the wild. There is a need for general concepts and theories. “Ecodis” proposes to fill this gap by determining a conceptual framework for effects of copathogens on disease transmission in one of the world’s best studied parasite-songbird systems: the directly-transmitted Mycoplasma gallisepticum bacteria in House Finches. Using methods from disease ecology and human epidemiology, I (Dr. Heylen; the applying experienced researcher) combine experimental and field surveillance data to create models on cross-host infection risks. These innovative models will improve our understanding of the roles of coinfections in mediating pathogen establishment and persistence in novel host species and previously unexposed populations. I will be guided by high-profile scientists, Hens (Hasselt University) and Dobson (Princeton University), and benefit from their extensive networks to develop a set of crucial skills that boost my research profile and expertise in constructing/applying mathematical and theoretical models in disease ecology. Following the ‘One Health’ vision, this multidisciplinary and highly translational project will allow me to develop an international career as disease ecologist, and - in the long-term - to contribute to biodiversity and risk management programs in Europe and beyond.
Ambient air pollution, including black carbon, entails a serious public health risk because of its carcinogenic potential and as climate pollutant. Inhalation of fossil fuel-derived particulate matter (PM) is associated with a wide range of non-pulmonary health effects. Based on the WHO report of 2015 the European health annual costs of air pollution have been estimated to US$ 1.6 trillion. Although recent studies strongly suggest that particle translocation in biological systems is biologically plausible, they do not prove that ambient fossil fuel-derived carbonaceous nanoparticles enter the human systemic circulation in real-life conditions. We developed a novel method to detect carbonaceous nanoparticles in the urine of healthy children. The ERC funded ENVIRONAGE project already made a strong case for promoting urinary carbon detection to practice by demonstrating its usefulness as individual long-term exposure marker. Taking advantage of white-light generation by carbonaceous nanoparticles under femtosecond pulsed laser illumination, we demonstrated the presence of these particles in urine and its relation with the external environmental air pollution (Saenen et al. Am J Respir & Crit Care Med, in press). This pioneering study is of innovative value, as it paved the way for a non-invasive assessment of long-term individual exposure to one of the most toxic air pollutants, black carbon, and will be useful in epidemiological investigations, biomonitoring studies as well as in occupational settings. The aim of the INCALO (INternal black CArbon LOading) project is to promote the output of the ENVIRONAGE project towards a process for facilitation and commercialization of internal markers of exposure to black carbon.