Ralf Bruening

Department head, Professor
DUNN 216 (or try Lab DUNN 208)


Ph.D. in Physics

Specialty in Materials Science:

  • X-ray diffraction – thermal properties
  • glasses – metals – oxides
  • electroless and galvanic copper plating
  • in-situ stress and strain measurements


Peer reviewed publications since 1996 (student, postdoc/research assistant)

  1. Y. Tan, Y. Chen, Z. Mahimwalla, M.B. Johnson, T. Sharma, R. Brüning, and K. Ghandi, Novel synthesis of rutile titanium dioxide-polypyrrole nano composites and their application in hydrogen generation, Syn. Mater. 189, 77-85 (2014).
  2. T. Sharma, R. Brüning, C. Brown, A. Sibley, J. Etzkorn, and L. Stamp, Stress and Strain Evolution in Electroless Copper Films Evaluated with X-ray Diffraction and Substrate Curvature, J. Electrochem. Soc. 160, D226-D232 (2013).
  3. S. Bamberg, L.K. Perry, B. Muir, A. Abuzir, F. Brüning, and R. Brüning, The effect of nickel on the strain evolution in chemical copper films, Thin Solid Films 520, 6935-6941 (2012).
  4. Y. Djaoued, S. Balaji, and R. Brüning, Electrochromic devices based on porous tungsten oxide films, J. Nanomaterials, (accepted, June 2012).
  5. S. Amokrane, Y. Djaoued, S. Balaji, J. Robichaud, E. McCalla, R. Brüning, A. Benrejdal, Synthesis and characterization of novel nanorod superstructures and twin octahedral morphologies of WO3 by hydrothermal treatment, Mat. Chem. Phys. 136, 80-89 (2012).
  6. R. Brüning, L. Perry, B. Muir, A. Abuzir, S. Bamberg, W. Friz, N. Dambrowsky, and F. Brüning, Strain Analysis of Copper Films During Wet-Chemical Deposition, Mater. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. 1400 (2012).
  7. R. Brüning, B. Muir, E. McCalla, E. Lempereur, F. Brüning and J. Etzkorn, Strain in electroless copper films monitored by X-ray diffraction during and after deposition and its dependence on bath chemistry, Thin Solid Films 519, 4377-4383 (2011).
  8. S. Bamberg, J. Etzkorn, F. Brüning, R. Brüning, Novel wet chemical metallization for glass interposers, Proceedings IMAPS 7th International Conference of Device Packaging (2011).
  9. S. Balaji, Y. Djaoued, A.S. Albert, R. Brüning, N. Beaudoin and R. Robichaud, Porous orthorhombic tungsten oxide thin films: synthesis, characterization, and application in electrochromic and photochromic devices, J. Mater. Chem. 21, 3940-3948 (2011).
  10. R. Brüning, J.B. Galbraith, K.E. Braedley, J. Johnstone, J. Robichaud, S. Balaji, and Y. Djaoued, X-Ray Diffraction and Micro-Raman Study of Structural Transformations in (B2O3)1-x(H2O)x Glasses and Liquids, J. Am. Ceram. Soc. 93, 3745-3751, (2010).
  11. K.S. Xia, D. Ferguson, Y. Djaoued, J. Robichaud, N. Tchoukanova, R. Brüning and E. McCallaSynthesis of hybrid silica materials with tunable pore structures and morphology and their application for heavy metal removal from drinking water, Appl. Catal., A 387, 231-241 (2010).
  12. K.S. Xia, R.Z. Ferguson, M. Losier, N. Tchoukanova, R. Brüning and Y. Djaoued, Template-free synthesis and photocatalytic activity of hierarchical porous titania with controlled texture and crystalline structure, J. Hazard. Mater. 183, 554-564 (2010).
  13. R. Bissessur, R.I. Haines, D. Gallant and R. Brüning, Inclusion of a cobalt tetraazamacrocyle into layered molybdenum disulfide, Mater. Chem. Phys. 122, 563-566 (2010).
  14. S. Balaji, Y. Djaoued, A-S. Albert, R.Z. Ferguson, R. Brüning and B.L. Su, Construction and characterization of tunable meso-/macroporous tungsten oxide-based transmissive electrochtromic devices, J. Mater. Sci. 44 6608-6616 (2009).
  15. S. Balaji, Y. Djaoued, A-S. Albert, R.Z. Ferguson and R. Brüning, Hexagonal Tungsten Oxide Based Electrochhromic Devices, Spectroscopic Evidence for the Li ion Occupance of 4-Coordinated Square Windows, Chem. Mater. 21 1381-1389 (2009).
  16. R. Brüning, J.B. Galbraith, K.E. Braedley, S. Balaji, Y. Djaoued, F.O. Adurodija, XRD and micro-Raman study of polymerization in (B2O3)1-x(H2O)x glasses and liquids, Mater. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. 1151, TT01-05 (2009).
  17. R. Brüning, D.A. St-Onge, S. Patterson, W. Kob, Glass transitions in 1, 2, 3 and 4 dimensional binary Lennard-Jones Systems, J. Phys: Condens. Matter. 21 035117 (11 pages) (2009).
  18. D. Mossman, J. Ehrman, R. Brüning, L. Semple and L. Groat, Skunk calcite: mineralparagenesis in an amethyst geode from Ametista, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, Mineralogical Record 40 (2), 121-125 (2009).
  19. S. Balaji, A.-S Albert, Y. Djaoued, R. Brüning, Micro-Raman spectroscopic characterization of a tunable electrochromic device for appliation in smart windows, J. Raman Spectrosc. 40, 92-100 (2009).
  20. N. Seirafinanpour, S. Badilescu, Y. Djaoued, R. Brüning, S. Balaji, M. Kahrizi, Vo-Van Truong, Optical Properties of Low Temperature Prepared Granular Titanium Dioxide on a Silver Substrate, Thin Solid Films 516, 6359-6364 (2008).
  21. R. Brüning, C. Levelut, R. Le Parc, A. Faivre, L. Semple, J.-P. Simon, M. Vallee, J.-L. Hazemann, Temperature Scanning SAXS Measurements of Structural Relaxation in Type-III Vitreous Silica, J. Appl. Phys. 102, 083535, (2007).
  22. David Mossman, François Gauthier-Lafaye, Adriana Dutkiewicz, and Ralf Brüning, Carbonaceous substances in Oklo reactors-Analogue for permanent deep geologic disposal of anthropogenic nuclear waste, Rev. Eng. Geol. 19, chapter 1, 14 pages, 2008.
  23. A. Cremonesi, G. Calestani, G. Antonioli, D. Beirsani, P.P Lottici, Y. Djaoued, R. Brüning, XAS analysis on mesoporous vanadium oxide thin films by sol-gel, X-ray Spectrom. 36, 226-229 (2007).
  24. Y. Djaoued, S. Badilescu, S. Balaji, N. Seirafianpour, A.-R. Hajiaboli, R.B. Sadeghian, K. Braedley, R. Brüning, M. Kahrizi and Vo-Van Truong, A Micro-Raman Spectroscopy Study of Colloidal Crystal Films of Polystyrene-Gold Composites, Applied Spectroscopy 61, 1201-1210 (2007).
  25. S.F. Brauer, M. Roseman and R. Brüning, Performance and Stability of Soft Magnetic Elements for Electronic Article Surveillance, IEEE Transactions on Magnetics 43, 1875-1879 (2007).
  26. C. Levelut, R. Le Parc, A. Faivre, R. Brüning, B. Champagnon, V. Marinez, J.-P. Simon, F. Bley and J.-L. Hazemann, Density fluctuations in oxide glasses investigated by small-angle X-ray scattering, J. Appl. Cryst. 40, S512-S516 Suppl., (2007).
  27. A. Cremonesi, D. Bersani, P.P. Lottici, Y. Djaoued and R. Brüning, Synthesis and structural characterization of mesoporous V2O3 thin films for electrochromic applications, Thin Solid Films 515, 1500-1505 (2006).
  28. F.O. AdurodijaL. Semple and R. Brüning, Crystallization process and electro-optical properties of In2O3 and ITO thin films, Journal of Materials Science 41, 7096-7102 (2006).
  29. F.O. AdurodijaL. Semple and R. Brüning, Real -time in situ crystallization and electrical properties of pulsed laser deposited In2O3 thin films, Thin Solid Films 492, 153-157 (2005).
  30. F.O. Adurodija, R. Brüning, I.O. Asia, H. Izumi, T. Ishihara and H. Yoshioka, Effects of laser irradiation energy density on the properties of pulsed laser deposited ITO thin films, Applied Physics A 81, 953-957 (2005).
  31. R. Brüning, C. Levelut, A. Faivre, R. LeParc, J.-P. Simon, F. Bley and J.-L. Hazemann, Characterization of the glass tranistion in vitreous silica by temperature scanning small-angle X-ray scattering, Europhys. Lett. 70, 211-217 (2005).
  32. R. Brüning, K. Bulmer, R. Bissessur, R.I. Haines, P. Varma and S. EmeneauThe Structure of a Molybdenum Disulfide Intercalation Compound, Mater. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. 847, EE9.34.1-6 (2005).
  33. Y. Djaoued, J. Robichaud, R. Brüning and P.V Ashrit, Effect of ply(ethylen glycol) on the crystallisation and phase transition of nanocrystalline TiO2 Films, Materials Science-Poland 23, 15-23 (2005).
  34. Y. Djaoued, R. Brüning, D. Bersani, P.P. Lottici and S. Badilescu, Sol-Gel Nanocrystalline Brookite-Rich Titania, Materials Lett. 58, 2618-2622 (2004).
  35. R. Bissessur, B.D. Wagner and R. Brüning, Novel pyrene and 8-anilino-1-naphthalenesulfonic acid-MoS2 intercalates, J. Mater. Sci. 39, 119-125 (2004).
  36. D.J. Mossman, R. Brüning and H.P. Powell, Anatomy of a Jurassic Theropod Trackway from Arley, Oxfordshire, U.K., Ichnos 10, 195-207 (2003).
  37. Ralf Brüning, On the glass transition in vitreous silica by differential thermal analysis measurements, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 330, 13-22 (2003).
  38. R. Brüning and S. PattersonThermal and structural properties of B2O3-H2O glasses, J. Mater. Res. 18, 2494-2500 (2003).
  39. R. Bissessur, D. Gallant and R. Brüning, Novel nanocomposite material consisting of poly [oxymethylene-(oxyethylene)] and molybdenum disulfide, Mater. Chem. Phys. 82, 316-320 (2003).
  40. Y. Djaoued, P.V. Ashrit, S. Badilescu and R. Brüning, Synthesis and Characterisation of Macroporous Tungsten Oxide Films for Electrochtromic Application, J. of Sol-Gel Sci. Technol. 28, 235-244 (2003).
  41. R. Brüning and D. CottrellX-ray and neutron scattering observations of structural relaxation of vitreous silica, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 325, 6-15 (2003).
  42. Rabin Bissessur, David Gallant and Ralf Brüning, Novel intercalation compound of poly[oligo(ethylene glycol)-oxalate] in molybdenum disulfide, J. Mater. Sci. Lett. 22, 429-431 (2003).
  43. Y. Djaoued, P.V. Ashrit, S. Badilescu and R. Brüning, Micrcostructure, optical and electrochromic properties of sol-gel nanoporous tungsten oxide films, Advanced Optical Devices, Technologies, and Medical Applications, Proceedings of SPIE 5123. 202-209 (2003).
  44. Rabin Bissessur, David Gallant and Ralf Brüning, New poly[bis-(methoxyethoxyethoxy)phosphazene]-MoS2 nanocomposite, Solid State Ionics 158, 205-209 (2003).
  45. Sulan Kuai, Simona Badilescu, Georges Bader, Ralf Brüning, Xingfang Hu and Vo-Van Truong, Preparation of Large-Area 3D Ordered Macroporous Titania Films by Silica Colloidal Templating, Adv. Mat. 15, 73-75 (2003).
  46. Rabin Bissessur, Robert I. Haines, and Ralf Brüning, Intercalation of tetraazamococycle into molybdenum disulfide, J. Mater. Chem. 13, 44-49 (2003).
  47. Eric McCalla and Ralf Brüning, Amorphization of crystalline orthoboric acid on a vitreous B2O3 substrate, J. Mater. Res. 17, 3098-3104 (2002).
  48. Y. Djaoued, Simona Badilsecu, P.V. Ashrit, D. Bersani, P.P. Lottici and R. Brüning, Low temperature sol-gel preparation of nanocrystalline TiO2 thin films, J. of Sol-Gel Sci. and Techn. 24, 247-254 (2002).
  49. Y. Djaoued, R. Taj, R. Brüning, S. Badilsecu, P.V. Ashrit, G. Bader and Vo-Van Truong, Study of the phase transition and the thermal nitridation of nanocrystalline sol-gel titania films, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 297, 55-66 (2002).
  50. Rabin Bissessur, Robert I. Haines, Dean R. Hutchings and Ralf Brüning, Intercalation of pendant-arm tetraazamococycle into molybdenum disulfide, Chem. Commun. 17, 1598-1599 (2001).
  51. Ralf Brüning, Edward Irving and Gilles LeBlancA Reverse Monte Carlo study of structural relaxation in vitreous selenium, J. Appl. Phys. 89, 3215-3222 (2001).
  52. Y. Djaoued, S. Badilescu, R. Taj, R. Brüning, P.V. Ashrit, G. Bader and Vo-Van Truong, High Temperature Transformation of Sol-Bel Derived TiO2 Thin Films into TiN Films, Schriften des Forschungszentrum Jülich, Series Energy Technology 15, 657-660 (2000).
  53. Ralf Brüning and Tim CrowellA method to determine the kinetics of a supercooled liquid by temperature scanning measurements applied to (Li,Na)acetate and GeO2, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 248 (1999), 183-193.
  54. R. Brüning, A. Zaluska, M. Sutton, J.O. Ström–Olsen and S. Brauer, Crystallisation of near-eutectic CoZr alloys and the formation and fast decay of a bcc Co92Zr8 solid solution, J. Non–Cryst. Sol. 205-207, 540–545 (1996).
  55. R. Brüning and M. Sutton, Fragility of glass forming systems and the width of the glass transition, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 205-207, 480–484 (1996). 

Conference contributions (not peer reviewed) since 2005 (presenter underlined)

  1. R. Brüning, T. Sharma, D.A. Brown, A. Sibley, T. Bernhard, and F. Brüning, Effect of the substrate material on the stress of electroless copper films, Materials Research Society Fall Meeting, Boston 2013 (poster).
  2. T. Bernhard, L. Gregoriades, F. Brüning, R. Brüning, J. Etzkorn, W. Friz, M. Merschky, B. Muir, L. Perry, and T. Sharma, Strain in Electroless Copper Films: Analysis by in siut X-Ray Diffraction and Curvature Methods, 9th International Conference and Exhibitionn on Device Packagin, Scottsdale, AZ 2013 (oral).
  3. T. Sharma, D.A. Brown, A. Sibley, R. Brüning, Nina Dambrowsky, V. Peldzinski, T. Bernhard, and F. Brüning, A survey of stress in copper films prepared by galvanic and electroless deposition, Canadian Association of Physicists Annual Conference, Montréal, 2013 (poster).
  4. A. Sibley, T. Sharma, R. Brüning, S. Bamberg, M. Merschky, F. Brüning, Understanding internal stress in electroless copper films by combining two techniques, IRM Symposium Dalhousie Univ, June 2012 (poster).
  5. T. Sharma, R. Brüning, S. Bamberg, M. Merschky, F. Brüning, Internal stress in electroless copper: A comparison of results based on X-ray diffraction and substrate curvature, Canadian Association of Physicists Annual Conference, University of Calgary, June 2012 (oral).
  6. R. Brüning, L. Perry, B. Muir, A. Abuzir, S. Bamberg, W. Friz, N. Dambrowsky, and F. Brüning, Strain Analysis of Copper Films During Wet-Chemical Deposition, Materials Research Society Fall Meeting, Boston 2011 (oral).
  7. S. Bamberg, R. Brüning, J. Etzkorn, F. Brüning, Novel Wet Chemical Copper Metallization for glass interposers, 7th International Conference and Exhibitionn on Device Packagin, Scottsdale, AZ 2011 (oral).
  8. R. Brüning, J.B. Gailbraith, K.E. Braedley, S. Balaji, Y. Djaoued, The (B2O3)1-x(H2O)x system: from a random network of covalent bonds to a network of hydrogen bonds, PacRim 8, Vancouver, June 5 2009, (invited).
  9. R. Brüning, J.B. Gailbraith, K.E. Braedley, F. Adurodija, X-Ray Scattering of Liquid and Vitreous (B2O3)1-x(H2O)x, Materials Research Society Fall Meeting, Boston 2008 (oral).
  10. Ralf Brüning, L. Semple, M. Vallee, C. Levelut, R. Le Parc, A. Faivre, Temperature-scanning small angle x-ray scattering – tool to monitor the glass transition in vitreous silica, Canadian Association of Physicists Annual Conference, Université Laval, 8-11 June, 2008 (oral).
  11. C. Levelut, R. Le Parc, A. Faivre, R. Brüning, B. Champagnon, V. Marinez, J.-P. Simon, F. Bley and J.-L. Hazemann, Density fluctuations in oxide glasses investigated by SAXS, XIII International Conference on Small-angle Scattering, Kyoto (Japan), July 9-13, 2006.
  12. F.O. Adurodija, L. Semple and R. Brüning, Crystallization and Electro-optical Properties of In2O3 and ITO Thin Films, Canadian Association of Physicists Annual Conference, University of British Columbia, 5-8 June, 2005 (oral).
  13. 5th International Discussion Meeting on Relaxations in Complex Systems, July 7th – July 13th 2005, Lille, France. Influence of thermal history on the structure and physical properties of oxide glasses. C. Levelut, R. Le Parc, A. Faivre, LCVN, Université Montpellier 2, R. Brüning, Physics Department, Mount Allison University, Canada, M. Malki, CRMHT, Orleans, B Champagnon, LPCML, Université Claude Bernard, Lyon (oral).    

By invitation

  1. Selected as one of about 70 experiments for the 2005 issue Highlights by the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility, page 24: R. Brüning, C. Levelut, A. Faivre, R. LeParc, J.-P. Simon, F. Bley and J.-L. Hazemann, Characterization of the glass tranistion in vitreous silica by temperature-canning small-angle X-ray scattering, Also http://www.esrf.fr/UsersAndScience/Publications/Highlights/2005/HRRS/HRRS16/
  2. R. Brüning, R. Bisessur, R. Haines, S. EmeneauThe Structure of a MoS2-macrocylcle Intercalation Compound, NRC Canadian Neutron Beam Centre Annual Report 05/06, p. 97-98 (2006).



1992–1995   Research Associate, Centre for Physics of Materials, McGill University

1990–1992   Wissenschaftlicher Assistant,Physics department, Universität Augsburg

1990            PhD in Physics, McGill University

1986            MSc in Physics, McGill University

1982–1984   Universität Kiel (Physik), Germany (Vordiplom in Physics 1983)

1981–1982   Universität Bonn (Physik), Germany


I have taught, at various times, the following courses at Mount Allison University:

  • Physics 1051 - General Physics I
  • Physics 1551 - General Physics II
  • Physics 2251 - Classical Waves
  • Physics 3511 - Physics for the Life Sciences
  • Physics 3521 - Biosensory Physics
  • Physics 3701 - Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Physics 3701 - Thermodynamics
  • Physics 3811 - Quantum Waves
  • Physics 4201 - Solid State Physics
  • Physics 4951 - Special Topics
  • Physics 4990 - Honours Thesis

The Physics Department at Mount Allison University has moved towards a studio style approach to teaching. This approach emphasizes group work and the interaction between the students. As a result, students acquire the ability to communicate their results, and, as a consequence, are better prepared to remember the concepts. I have implemented this approach, to varying degrees, in the courses that I am instructing.  I enjoy developing experiments for the teaching laboratories as well as for in-class experiments.


Currently, I am working on the properties of copper films for the electronics industry.  We measure mainly stress and strain (based on X-ray diffraction) while these films are plated chemically (without current) or galvanically (with current).  This research is carried out in collaboration with Atotech Deutschland GmbH.

Prior to that, my main interest has focused on the properties of glasses (structure, kinetics).  I am collaborating with other researchers on the properties and applications of metal oxide films.
I enjoy working with students in the lab, an activity that bridges teaching and research.  If you are interested in summer research projects (Honours Thesis work or otherwise), or MSc studies in the area Physics/Chemistry/Materials Science, then please contact me.

Grants, awards & honours

2012 - Paul Pare Excellence Award (Mount Allison University)

2004 - Obed Edmund Smith Chair in Physics (Mount Allison University)

2004 - Paul Pare Medal (Mount Allison University)

2002 - Paul Pare Excellence Award (Mount Allison University)

Undergraduate and Graduate Studies Evangelisches Studienwerk e.V.