Stuttgart, Germany, June 23, 2004--Professor Thomas Graf has taken over the direction of the Institut für Strahlwerkzeuge (Institute of High Power Laser Technology) at the University of Stuttgart. Previously, the 37 year old physicist led the "High-Power Lasers and Material Science" group at the Institute of Applied Physics of the University of Berne, Switzerland.
At the University of Stuttgart he succeeds Professor Helmut Hügel who retired on June 1. Since the creation of the institute in 1986, Professor Hügel has directed the IFSW and established it as a prominent institute for laser technology. During the past 18 years the IFSW contributed to the progress of laser technologies with innovative research such as the invention of the thin-disk laser, fundamental investigations of laser welding and of pulsed laser micro-machining with short and ultra-short pulses.
As director of the IFSW at the University of Stuttgart Professor Graf will continue his activities in laser physics and aim at a holistic approach both in teaching and research covering the complete range from scientific investigations on laser applications to the development of innovative laser beam sources.