Three new Max Planck Graduate Center Fellows elected

August 31, 2021

We are very happy to announce that our Max Planck Graduate Center for Quantum Materials grew by another three members.

Andrea Damascelli, Anna Fontcuberta i Morral and Claudio Castelnovo were appointed as Fellows of the Max Planck Society within our Max Planck Graduate Center. This Fellow Programme promotes cooperation between outstanding university professors and Max Planck Society researchers.

Andrea Damascelli, is the director of the Quantum Matter Institute at University of British Columbia (UBC), Canada, where he holds a Tier I Canada Research Chair. His group develops and utilizes angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy and its time- and spin-resolved variants, as well as resonant x-ray scattering, to push the limits of these techniques and gain a deeper understanding of quantum materials and new phases of matter. Leveraging facilities established at the Stewart Blusson Quantum Matter Institute, the UBC-Moore Centre for Ultrafast Quantum Matter, and the Quantum Materials Spectroscopy Centre at the Canadian Light Source, Prof. Damascelli together with his team pursue the engineering of the electronic structures through in situ adatom deposition, strain, and the optical coherent control of electronic states via pulsed laser excitations.
Prof. Damascelli won the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in 2012 and the Brockhouse Medal of the Canadian Association of Physicists in 2018.


Anna Fontcuberta i Morral is a full professor at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland and lead scientist of the Laboratory of Semiconductor Materials at EPFL. Her area of research concerns the synthesis and characterization of novel materials and structures for semiconductor technologies that will have an impact in the 21st century, including solar energy harvesting and next generation computing. Prof. Fontcuberta i Morral and her team are particularly interested in nanowires because of their properties and flexibility in terms of heterogeneous integration and rational use of resources. They also emphasize the use of elements that are abundant in the earth crust as Si, Sb and As.
Prof. Fontcuberta received the Rodolphe and Renée Haenny Foundation Prize in 2012 and the Emmy Noether Distinction for Women in Physics of the European Physical Society in Spring 2015.


Claudio Castelnovo is professor of Theoretical Physics at the Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge. He is generally interested in emergent and out-of-equilibrium phenomena in many body systems, both in classical statistical mechanics and in collective quantum phenomena. Current research topics include the effects of hard constraints in classical and quantum systems; freezing and glassiness; response and equilibration properties of systems with fractionalised excitations; topological order, quantum information and quantum computing.
Prof. Castelnovo won the Gertrude and Maurice Goldhaber Prize and the European Physical Society Condensed Matter Division’s Europhysics Prize in 2012, and the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics Young Scientist Prize in Structure and Dynamics of Condensed Matter in 2013.

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