Professor at the University of Potsdam
I am an astronomer and historian based at the Institute of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Potsdam. You are visiting my research website, where I report about recent results and publications.
My main research interests in astronomy are the final stages of stellar evolution, close binary systems, supernova Ia progenitors and the interaction between stars and substellar objects like brown dwarfs and planets. My main expertise is in the field of stellar spectroscopy of hot compact stars. I have been leading observing programmes at a lot of observatories all over the world and and even beyond with the Hubble Space Telescope.
I am very interested in the history of the Cold War both from an European and an American perspective. My work focuses on the history of nuclear energy, nuclear weapons and the international nonproliferation regime. To conduct my research I visited the political archive of the Auswärtige Amt in Berlin, the National Archives in Washington D.C. and several Presidential libraries in the United States.
I was born and raised in Oberzaubach, a small but special village in the southern German region of Franconia. I studied and obtained my doctors degrees in astronomy and history at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg. From 2004 to 2012 I was based at the Dr. Karl Remeis-Sternwarte in Bamberg, first as diploma and PhD student and eventually as a PostDoc supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG). From November 2012 to 2015 I was based at ESO Garching as an ESO fellow and from November 2015 to 2016 at the University of Warwick as a Marie Curie fellow. From April 2016 on I was associate professor (Privatdozent) and permanent staff member (Akademischer Rat) at the University of Tübingen. From January 2017 to March 2018 I received funding from a Heisenberg fellowship. Since April 2018 I am professor at the University of Potsdam.