Surface Engineering F4


Research departments
Administration and support units


The research activities conducted within the Department are associated with vacuum science, technology and applications. The main activities are focused on non-equilibrium plasma generation, sustenance and characterization, tailoring surface properties of advanced nano and biomedical materials by selected plasma species, surface characterization of inorganic, polymer and composite materials, deposition and characterization of thin films, modification and characterization of fusion relevant materials, thermodynamics of trapped gases and methods for sustaining ultrahigh vacuum environment, vacuum optoelectronics, and basic research in the field of surface and thin film characterization by electron spectroscopy techniques.


  • Atmospheric and low pressure gaseous discharges
  • Coupling of CD, Low-frequency, Radio-frequency and Micro-wave generators with gaseous plasma
  • Plasma characterization by optical emission and absorption techniques, mass spectrometry, electrical and catalytic probes
  • Plasma nanoscience and plasma biomedicine
  • Surface and thin film analysis by Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES), X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), Scanning Auger Microscopy (SAM), Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS) Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM);
  • Investigation of reactions on surfaces and interfaces
  • Development of plasma technologies
  • Study of field emission from nanostructured materials
  • Vacuum technique, vacuum optoelectronics and design of vacuum systems
  • Vacuum thermal insulation
  • Development of new instruments for use at synchrotron radiation sources
  • Consulting in the fields of plasma technologies, surface and thin film technologies, vacuum technique, vacuum measurements

Head of Department
Prof. Alenka Vesel,
Telephone: +386 1 477 35 02

Maja Ĺ ukarov
Telephone: +386 1 477 33 98

Plasma sources

Low pressure and atmospheric gaseous discharges are applied to generate plasma of desired characteristics. The department has specialized in electrode-less discharges powered with radio-frequency and microwave generators using optimized coupling.

Plasma characterization

Optical emission and absorption techniques as well as mass spectrometry, electrical and catalytic probes are used for characterization of glowing plasma and afterglow. The group has developed original versions of catalytic probes for space-resolved measurements of neutral reactive radicals.

Plasma technologies

Discharge cleaning (removal of organic as well as inorganic impurities from surfaces of two and three dimensional objects), Selective plasma etching of composite materials, Activation and passivation of polymers and polymer composites, Plasma nano-medicine (cardiovascular implants, wound dressings, sterilization, diagnostic methods), Plasma nano-science (quantum dots, nanowires, nanocomposites, complex nanostructures).

Surfaces, interfaces and thin films

Pure and applied surface science, surface characterization using ToF- SIMS, XPS, AES and AFM techniques, depth profiling, reactions on surfaces and interfaces, micro-analyses, structural and compositional modifications of solid materials upon treatment with energetic ions.

Vacuum science and applications

Methods for sustenance different grades of vacuum, vacuum metrology, adsorption desorption and permeation of gases through solids, vacuum optoelectronics, development of vacuum devices and components like cathode tubes, insulation panels and made-to-order vacuum elements.

J. Stefan Institute, Jamova 39, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia, Telephone: +386 1 477 39 00, Fax: +386 1 251 93 85