NWO Veni grants for Physics and Computer Science

Three young scientists from the Faculty of Science receive a Veni grant worth 250,000 Euros from NWO. Vincent Friebe and Nicoletta Liguori are physicists, Kaveh Razavi is a computer scientist.

07/19/2018 | 11:43 AM

Friebe, Liguori and Razavi (from left to right in the photo) will receive a Veni grant for the following three proposals.

Hacking Photosynthesis: a biosensor for environmental pollutants
Vincent Friebe (Physics) is a biophysicist and will investigate herbicides. In order to sustain our increasing food demand, novel herbicides are constantly being developed in order to improve crop yields. This research seeks to create an accessible biosensor which is specific and sensitive to herbicides residues found in our ecosystem, drinking water and food.

The molecular strategy of plants against sunburn
Nicoletta Liguori (Physics) investigates photosynthesis. By discarding the excess absorbed energy (photoprotection), plants avoid photodamage. Protein conformational switches trigger photoprotection. How these switches are regulated is poorly understood. The researcher will develop a novel ultrafast spectroscopy method and combine it with state-of-the-art molecular dynamics to determine it.

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Unreliable Hardware
Kaveh Razavi (Computer Science) is a researcher in the VU Cybersecurity group. We are increasing the number of transistors in computer hardware for improving performance. An unwanted side effect is hardware reliability issues. Hackers can abuse these issues to subvert system security. This project explores building secure systems out of unreliable hardware.