Research at the Beckman Institute

The Beckman Institute’s mission is to foster interdisciplinary research of the highest quality, transcending many of the limitations that are inherent to traditional university organizations and structures. The Institute was founded on the premise that reducing barriers between traditional scientific and technological disciplines can yield research advances that more conventional approaches cannot.

Overview of Beckman Institute Research

More than 1,500 researchers from more than 40 different University of Illinois departments as diverse as psychology, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, and biochemistry work within and across four research themes at the Beckman Institute.

Research Organized by Themes

Scan of a brain

Biological Intelligence

The BioIntel research theme seeks to understand the links between the brain and intelligent behavior.

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Three images of a gray-colored statue's face. From left to right, each image becomes progressively sharper and more detailed.

Human-Computer Intelligent Interaction

The HCII research theme seeks to enhance human-machine interface design through the optimization of state-of-the-art technology development and engineering of multimodal interface design concepts.

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Ultrasonic shear wave depicted as bands of orange and blue

Integrative Imaging

The IntIm research theme is dedicated to bringing together ideas, modalities, and people in imaging to foster the interdisciplinary discovery of fundamental principles in imaging science, new enabling technologies for the next generation of imaging instruments, and novel techniques for basic and translational research.

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Gold colored bendable electronic attached to the top of a model of a brain.

Molecular & Electronic Nanostructures

The general goal of the Molecular & Electronic Nanostructures (M&ENS) research theme is to develop a fundamental understanding of chemical and physical processes involving structures on the nanometer scale.

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Research Facilities

DTI Muscle stiffness

Biomedical Imaging Center

BIC is home to a wide variety of research programs, providing facilities, equipment, and training for research on nuclear magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy. A recent initiative of the Center is the integration of magnetic resonance methods with simultaneous optical imaging. It became a unit of the Beckman Institute in the summer of 2002, fostering access to a wide variety of resources.

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Man sits behind flight controls as he looks at the simulator screen displaying a horizon.

Illinois Simulator Laboratory

ISL is a Beckman Institute facility for advancing scientific understanding of human-computer interactions. As an Institute-wide facility, the ISL uses its expertise in the integration of advanced visualization, sonification, and interface technologies to enable researchers to conduct experiments in human multi-modal perception and cognition, cognitive and motor development, and multi-dimensional dataset visualization.

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DTI muscle render

Imaging Technology Group

ITG provides state-of-the-art facilities in the Microscopy Suite and the Visualization Laboratory, serving over 400 researchers from the Beckman Institute and nearly every department on campus. A secondary focus of the group is to develop advanced imaging technologies, with an emphasis on projects in remote instrument control and scientific visualization.

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