24 August 2012
Robert Feidenhans'l is the new head of the Niels Bohr Institute
Professor of nanophysics, Robert Feidenhans'l is the new head of the Niels Bohr Institute. He is coming from a position as the deputy head of research and has been the acting head of institute since 1 June.
“It is an incredibly exciting job and a great honour to be the head of an institute with such a high professional standard,” says Robert Feidenhans'l, adding that one of the most exciting tasks will be to expand upon the excellent research that is already underway.
Robert Feidenhans'l was educated at Aarhus University and has a Licentiate (PhD) in surface physics, which has since evolved into nanophysics. In ’83 he arrived at Risø National Laboratory where he remained until 2005, after which he came to the Niels Bohr Institute.
He researches in nanophysics using X-rays in order to understand how new advanced materials are built up, so you can see the structure all the way down to the atomic level. For example, he has done research on nanowires, which can be used in solar cells and LEDs. He is also at the forefront with a project to develop new groundbreaking X-ray technologies that are suitable for X-ray scanning food, so you can detect soft foreign bodies, such as insects.
Research into new advanced materials requires complex experiments in large research facilities and he has travelled a lot to the synchrotron facilities in Grenoble in France, PSI in Switzerland and DESY in Hamburg and he has a top post as chairman of the large European research centre XFEL in Hamburg.
Now he will focus his attention on the Niels Bohr Institute. It will be quite a task to follow in the footsteps of the former head of institute and now dean John Renner Hansen, who has done an excellent job, he says, but he is looking forward to collaborating with researchers, staff and students.
Robert Feidenhans'l also attaches great importance on continuing as an active researcher and teacher, as he believes it is important to be a leader who knows what is going on around himself.
Robert Feidenhans'l takes up his new position as head of institute on 1 September.