Physikerin der Woche 2020

Since January 2018 we highlight / celebrate every week women in physics in Germany or German women in physics abroad.

Please contact Dr. Ulrike Boehm if you would like to participate or if you would like to suggest a suitable candidate. We reported about our initiative in the April issue of the Physikjournal in 2018. The German article can be found here.

Participants of previous years can be found here: 2018 and 2019.

August

Prof. Dr. Juliane König-Birk (Heilbronn) - Kalenderwoche 33

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Juliane is the Dean of the Faculty Industrial and Process Engineering at Heilbronn University. The faculty consists of different master and bachelor courses such as production and process management, technical logistics management or process engineering. She holds a doctorate in physics in the field of nanooptics and surface physics. As Dean she is responsible for the organisation and supervision of teaching and the scientific facilities of the faculty. In addition to these tasks, Juliane herself gives physics lectures for engineers but also for children and organizes research workshops in order to awaken and maintain young people’s interest in physics and technology. Her field of research is the technical component cleanliness.

Foto-Rechte: Matthias Heibel

M.Sc. Katharina Dort (Giessen / Hamburg / Geneva) - Kalenderwoche 32

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Katharina is a PhD student in the Experimental Physics department at CERN in affiliation with the Justus-Liebig University in Giessen. For her PhD, she works on the research and development of silicon pixel detectors for future high-energy physics experiments. The detectors are required to deliver simultaneous micrometer spatial and nanosecond timing information about charged particles while operating in a harsh radiation environment. For the assessment of novel detector prototypes, she tests the devices in simulations and particle beams at DESY and CERN. She is particularly fascinated about the interdisciplinary collaboration with engineers that her work offers as well as spin-off applications in medicine and related fields.

Foto-Rechte: DESY

Juli

M.Sc. Eva-Maria Prexl (München) - Kalenderwoche 31

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Eva is a PhD student at the Munich School of BioEngineering at the Technical University of Munich in the group of Biomedical Physics of Prof. Franz Pfeiffer. She studied physics at the Technical University of Munich and specialized on biomedical imaging at the interface between physics and medicine. In her PhD, she is working on potential clinical applications of grating-based X-ray imaging. The method uses an interferometer to simultaneously extract the conventional attenuation image, a phase image and a dark-field image from a single image acquisition. With this threefold image contrast it is possible to visualize many pathologies ranging from stroke over lung diseases to breast cancer among many others.

Foto-Rechte: A. Heddergott / TUM

Dr. Alice Sandmeyer (Bielefeld) - Kalenderwoche 30

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For her whole academic career, Alice was working in the “Biomolecular Photonics” Group of Prof. Dr. Thomas Huser at the University Bielefeld – from Bachelor to PhD and few months of PostDoc. For her PhD thesis, she focused her research on designing compact and cost-efficient fluorescence microscopes, which are used for biological and medical imaging. A fast 3D fluorescence microscope was even shipped to New York City to image the HIV infection pathway. Other scopes were capable of super-resolution imaging, so that structures below the diffraction limit could be resolved. In detail, a SOFI (Super-resolution optical fluctuation imaging) and a SIM (Structured Illumination Microscopy) microscope were built, whereas the last one is even capable of real-time reconstruction. All scopes were designed and built with cost efficiency in mind to facilitate the dissemination of super-resolution fluorescence microscopy techniques, so that more facilities can do advanced imaging.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Alice Sandmeyer

M.Sc. Sudarshana Laha (Dresden) - Kalenderwoche 29

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Sudarshana is currently a PhD student in the research group of Christoph A. Weber at the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems (MPI-PKS), Dresden. Her group ‘ Mesoscopic Physics of Life ’ is also affiliated with the Center for Systems Biology Dresden (CSBD). She is working in the field of theoretical biophysics, studying the interplay of liquid-liquid phase separation and biochemical reactions in biological systems. Recent studies have brought into prominence how membrane-less organelles are formed in cells governed by the physics of binary/multicomponent phase separation. Her goal is to broadly understand the dynamics of ongoing phase separation and biochemical reactions of molecules in such in vivo and in vitro systems.

Foto-Rechte: M.Sc. Sudarshana Laha

M.Sc. Kristina Barragán Sanz (Bonn) - Kalenderwoche 28

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Kristina is a PhD student at caesar, a neuroethology research institute in Bonn, which is associated with the Max Planck Society. In the group of Dr. Stephan Irsen, she works at the interface of physics, structural biology and neuroscience. For her PhD, she develops a novel type of phase plate, to enhance contrast in cryo-transmission electron microscopy. The goal of her PhD thesis is to visualize a high resolution structure of small proteins (<100kDa).

Foto-Rechte: M.Sc. Kristina Barragán Sanz

Juni

Jun.-Prof. Dr. Elke Neu-Ruffing (Kaiserslautern) - Kalenderwoche 27

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Elke is an experimental physicist working interdisciplinary at the intersection of quantum technologies and biophysics. Since February 2020 she leads the Biophysics and Quantum Sensing group at University of Kaiserslautern. They are studying atomic-sized defects, so called color centers, in diamond as sensors. Their color centers are highly controllable quantum systems that enable to sense e.g. magnetic fields and optical near fields on the nanoscale. They are exploring to use these centers for biophysics where they can e.g. detect tiny currents occurring in living organisms.   

Foto-Rechte: Jun.-Prof. Dr. Elke Neu-Ruffing

Dr. Silvia Viola Kusminskiy (Erlangen) - Kalenderwoche 26

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Silvia is a theoretical physicist working at the intersection of condensed matter physics and quantum optics. She is the leader of the group Theory of Hybrid Quantum Systems at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light. With the help of her team, she studies the interaction between light and collective excitations in condensed matter systems at the micro/nanoscale, with emphasis on systems based on magnetic materials. Her goal is to learn how to tailor the interactions and the dynamics of these hybrid systems, in order to unravel quantum phenomena at unprecedented scales.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Silvia Viola Kusminskiy

Prof. Dr. Ursula Wurstbauer (Münster) - Kalenderwoche 25

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Ursula is an experimental solid state physicist and professor at the Institute of Physics at Münster University. The group focuses on exploring the optical and electronic properties of two-dimensional materials, related hetero- and hybrid structures and solid-state based nanosystems with special emphasize on emergent quantum states, interaction driven phenomena and collective behavior. To investigate those systems, the group uses state-of the art nanofabrication, various optical spectroscopy and microscopy techniques complemented with magnetotransport experiments in a full temperature range down to a few millikelvins.

Foto-Rechte: Prof. Dr. Ursula Wurstbauer

Dr. Wiebke Jahr (Klosterneuburg / Vienna) - Kalenderwoche 24

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Wiebke is a HFSP postdoctoral fellow working on optical microscopy beyond the diffraction limit in the Danzl group / IST Austria. In STimulated Emission Depletion (STED) microscopy, fluorescent molecules are excited with a regularly focused laser beam. A second laser beam featuring intensity minima (e.g. “donut”-shaped) switches fluorescence off. The signaling volume is not defined by diffraction anymore, but confined by the STED laser. Spatial details in the range of 10s of nm are resolvable using visible light. Wiebke’s work is directly at the interface of physics (optics development) and the life sciences. She finds it exciting how technical improvements in the measurement process directly translate into a deeper understanding of biological processes. The photo shows Wiebke aligning the fluorescence excitation module of a homebuilt STED microscope.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Wiebke Jahr

Prof. Dr. Kathy Lüdge (Berlin) - Kalenderwoche 23

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Kathy is a Professor at the Institute of Theoretical Physics at the TU Berlin. Her research interests are lasers, optical networks and nonlinear dynamics. Within her group, semi-analytic delay-differential equations and bifurcation theory are used to describe and optimize the emission characteristics of optical devices. Applications lie in the area of data communication which are explored in strong collaboration with experimental groups around the world. During a Humboldt fellowship 2017 in New Zealand (picture) she built strong connections to the University of Auckland and experienced scientific mobility with a family of four. Recently, she also works on laser networks for machine learning applications, which opens exciting possibilities for fast and energy efficient all-optical computing.

Foto-Rechte: Prof. Dr. Kathy Lüdge

Mai

Dr. Miriam Rengel (Göttingen) - Kalenderwoche 22

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Miriam is an astrophysicist at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Germany. Her primary focus is planetary atmospheres (in the Solar System and beyond) and atmospheric remote sensing of solar system objects. She carries out observations for her research using numerous observatories and facilities, both ground and space-based, and develops and implements radiative transfer codes to interpret the data and retrieve parameters like temperature and composition. She currently works for the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) and its Submillimetre Wave Instrument (SWI), a European Space Agency (ESA) mission which will explore Jupiter and three of its icy moons.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Miriam Rengel

Prof. Dr. Regina Hoffmann-Vogel (Potsdam-Golm) - Kalenderwoche 21

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Regina is the Head of the Experimental Physics of Condensed Matter group and Professor at the Institute of Physics and Astrophysics at the University of Potsdam. The main goal of her research group is to understand the relation between atomic and mesoscopic structure and to understand electronic transport of nanostructures. To investigate the structure of their research objects they use scanning force microscopy. To fabricate small contacts, they use electromigration.
 
 
 

Foto-Rechte: Kirsten Sachse

B.Sc. Florina Schalamon (Mainz) - Kalenderwoche 20

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Florina is a meteorology masters student at the Johannes-Gutenberg University Mainz and did an ERASMUS semester at UNIS in Longyearbyen, Svalbard. This is a great place to learn a lot about snow and ice as everything is just in front of the doorstep. For her first, but hopefully not last, arctic fieldwork they measured with a ground penetrating radar the snow depth of glaciers. It is important to be able to monitor the mass balance of the glacier and study the development over time. Besides studying to become an arctic researcher,  she is the board member for international relation of the Young German Physical Society and tries to encourage others to make their own experiences abroad.

Foto-Rechte: Florina Schalamon

Prof. Dr. Karen Alim (Göttingen / München) - Kalenderwoche 19

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Karen is a Professor at the Physics Department at the Technical University of Munich and a Group Leader at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization. She is fascinated by life and in particular by how shapes and patterns are formed. Her group combines experiment and theoretical physics to unravel how fluid flows and mechanical forces self-organise the architecture of vascular networks and the shapes of organs. 

Foto-Rechte: Bilderfest

April

Jun.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Westhoff (Heidelberg) - Kalenderwoche 18

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Jun.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Westhoff is a theoretical particle physicist at Heidelberg University. With her research group she searches for signs of dark matter and other kinds of new physics at particle colliders. Susanne loves working directly with experimentalists at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN to invent new data analyses together. Now that her daily work is mostly confined to her kitchen table, she wishes she was at the Aspen Center for Theoretical Physics in Aspen, Colorado, where physicists from around the world like to spend their summer discussing new research ideas - and climbing the Rockies.

Foto-Rechte: Jun.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Westhoff

Dr. Christina Eilers (Boston, MA) - Kalenderwoche 17

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Christina is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston. She studies the early formation and growth of supermassive black holes that reside at the center of all massive galaxies in the universe. By using some of the largest optical and near-infrared telescopes on Earth, which are located on top of a dormant volcano in Hawaii and in the middle of the Atacama desert in Chile, she observes distant, very luminous galaxies, so-called quasars, that are powered by accretion onto their supermassive black holes. The light of these quasars has traveled billions of years before it reaches our telescopes on Earth and thus allows astronomers a glimpse into the past history of our universe. 

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Christina Eilers

M.Sc. Najd Altwaijry (Garching/Munich) - Kalenderwoche 16

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Najd studied physics at King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and obtained her MSc in physics with work performed at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics in Garching. Now, she is a PhD student in the Max Planck School of Photonics within the group of Prof. Matthias Kling at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. She is working on a next generation Ultrabroadband Field Synthesizers and using ultrashort light pulses for investigating ultrafast processes in solids in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics.

Foto-Rechte: Matthew Weidman

Dr. Ann-Kathrin Schütz (Tübingen) - Kalenderwoche 15

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Ann-Kathrin is currently a postdoc for data analysis at the GERDA experiment located at the Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS) in Italy. The GERmanium Detector Array (Gerda) experiment aims for the discovery of neutrinoless double beta decay (0νββ) decay in 76Ge. The neutrinoless double beta decay is presently the only feasible way to reveal the Majorana nature of neutrinos, i.e. if neutrinos are their own anti-particles. GERDA aims to discover this process in a background-free search using 76Ge. Since reducing the background is one of the major challenges for 0vbb experimental searches, the goal of Ann-Kathrin's work is a detailed study of the background and the development of a comprehensive model describing the experimental energy spectra measured with GERDA.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Ann-Kathrin Schütz

März

M.Sc. Katharina Kolatzki (Zürich, Switzerland) - Kalenderwoche 14

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Katharina is a PhD student in the newly founded group of Prof. Dr. Daniela Rupp at ETH Zürich. She obtained her Bachelor's and Master's degree from TU Berlin, where she started working in the field of nanoparticles and their ultrafast interactions with intense X-ray pulses. In Zürich, she continues this work, currently building a source for liquid helium droplets which are created via the controlled breakup of a liquid helium jet.

Foto-Rechte: Katharina Kolatzki

 

Dr. Marie Walde (Roscoff, France) - Kalenderwoche 13

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Marie is a biophysicist with a doctoral degree in microscopy and biomedical imaging from the Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena.
She specialized in advanced fluorescence microscopy and enjoys interdisciplinary work that uses cutting-edge optics and imaging methods to answer biological questions.

Marie currently works as a postdoctoral researcher for the CNRS/Sorbonne Université at the Station Biologique de Roscoff, France. Her research here focuses on automated multicolor 3D microscopy and machine learning-based image classification to study symbioses and biodiversity in marine plankton.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Miguel Méndez Sandín

B.Sc. Lara Grabitz (Heidelberg) - Kalenderwoche 12

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Lara is a master's student at the University of Heidelberg. During her Bachelor thesis in theoretical particle physics, she looked at Di-Higgs production processes to study physics beyond the Standard Model. These processes are especially interesting as they have not yet been measured at the LHC due to the low cross section. Besides her studies Lara is passionate about science networking and education. She is a committee member of the German Network of Young Scientists and holds the committee position for education at the young German Physical Society.

Foto-Rechte: jDPG / DPG

 

 

Dr. Vanessa Graber (Barcelona) - Kalenderwoche 11

Vanessa is a theoretical astrophysicist who investigates different aspects of neutron stars physics, the densest objects in our Universe. One of her main research interests focuses on the interface between astrophysics and condensed matter physics, specifically the implications of so-called superfluid and superconducting components on observable parameters. The interdisciplinary nature of this research is one of Vanessa's main reasons for studying neutron stars. As a senior postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Space Sciences (ICE-CSIC) in Barcelona, Vanessa recently started working on a new project related to the population synthesis of isolated neutron stars.

Foto-Rechte: Morgan Mouton

Dr. Flore Kunst (Garching/Munich) - Kalenderwoche 10

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Flore finished her PhD at Stockholm University last year, where she worked on non-interacting topological phases in various contexts. The unifying feature of such phases is the existence of robust, electronic states on the boundaries, and during her PhD she worked on developing a method with which to find exact solutions to describe the wave functions of states. More recently, she started looking at the effects of dissipation in these models, which leads to many new exotic features. She will continue working on such nonequilibrium topological phases both in the single-particle limit as well as the many-body case during her time as a Max-Planck-Harvard Postdoctoral Fellow at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Flore Kunst

Februar

M. Sc. Charlotte Beelen (Oldenburg) - Kalenderwoche 9

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Charlotte is a PhD student at the university of Oldenburg in the DFG research training group "Molecular basis of sensory biology". She is working on a computational model of the first step in vision: a biochemical signalling cascade that takes place in rod cells in the eye. This interdisciplinary approach at the interface of physics, chemistry and biology allows a comprehensive description of the signalling cascade and predictions of its behaviour in different conditions, e.g. different light stimuli or a genetic mutation leading to a disease. Astonishingly, rod cells can detect single photons, and thus operate at the physical measurement limit. Charlotte and her collaborators are performing stochastic simulations to understand the statistics of this phenomenon.

Foto-Rechte: M. Sc. Charlotte Beelen

 

Prof. Dr. Laura Na Liu (Heidelberg) - Kalenderwoche 8

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Laura is a Professor at the Kirchhoff-Institute for Physics at the Heidelberg University. She works at the interface between nanophotonics, biology, and chemistry. Her group focuses on developing sophisticated and smart optical nanosystems for answering structural biology questions as well as catalytic chemistry questions in local environments.

Foto-Rechte: Prof. Dr. Laura Na Liu

 

 

Prof. Dr. Claudia Eberlein (Loughborough, UK) - Kalenderwoche 7

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Claudia is a Professor of Theoretical Physics and Dean of the School of Science at Loughborough University. Her research involves the application of quantum field theory to nanotechnology. Charged or polarizable quantum systems interact with the quantized electromagnetic field which leads to quantum corrections, e.g. the Lamb shift in atoms or the anomalous magnetic moment of the electron. This interaction is affected by the presence of material boundaries that reflect, refract, or absorb light, and this causes spatial variations in these quantum corrections that can be exploited for nanotechnology. However, after three decades of research in this field, Claudia now spends most of her time leading the School of Science, which comprises 5 academic disciplines and includes 240 staff and 2200 students, and contributing to the leadership and management of Loughborough University.

Foto-Rechte: Prof. Dr. Claudia Eberlein

 

 

 

Dr. Almut Beige (Leeds, UK) - Kalenderwoche 6

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Almut is the Head of the Theoretical Physics group at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. Since completing her PhD at the University of Goettingen, Almut has been fascinated with the often very strange implications of quantum physics. Already in 2000, she used such implications to design more efficient quantum computing schemes in open quantum systems. Some of her ideas are currently implemented in labs worldwide. Recently, Almut's groups became fascinated by quantum photonics and tries to better understand different ways of seeing light.

 

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Almut Beige

Januar

Dr. Elisa Palacino González (Berlin) - Kalenderwoche 5

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Elisa Palacino González holds a doctoral degree from the Technical University of Munich in the area of Theoretical Nonlinear Optical Spectroscopy of molecules. One of the main goals in her PhD work was the development of methods for the simulation and interpretation of nonlinear optical spectroscopic signals in the UV region, as an approach to understand the ultrafast nuclear dynamics of nontrivial model systems. Now she is working as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Max Born-Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short-Pulse Spectroscopy in Berlin, where she is focused on the combined application of ab initio calculations and QM/MM methods with the simulation of nonlinear optical IR spectra to explain the mechanisms behind the photoinduced dynamics of molecules in solvated environments.

Foto-Rechte: Dr. Elisa Palacino González

Prof. Dr. Daniela Rupp (Zürich) - Kalenderwoche 4

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Daniela and her group at ETH Zurich investigate the structure and dynamics of nanoparticles. Using intense X-ray flashes, they take snapshots of individual nanoparticles in free flight by light scattering – this is called coherent diffraction imaging. For their experiments, they either travel to huge X-ray free-electron lasers or use high-intensity laboratory lasers to generate short-wave light pulses. With coherent diffraction imaging, it has become possible to investigate the structure of fragile nanostructures that cannot be deposited and introduced into an electron microscope. In addition, the ultra-short pulses allow for obtaining movies of extremely fast dynamics in these small particles. The investigations help gaining new insights into the processes leading to structure formation and developing a better understanding and control of the interaction of intense X-ray pulses with matter. 

Foto-Rechte: Jakob Jordan

Hier geht es zu den Teilnehmerinnen der Physikerin der Woche 2018 und 2019 Projekte.