Professor Stefan Hecht, PhD: Professor for Organic Chemistry and functional Materials at the Department of Chemistry of Humboldt University of Berlin

31. May 2010

Professor Stefan Hecht, PhD

Professor for Organic Chemistry and functional Materials at the Department of Chemistry of Humboldt University of Berlin

Professor Stefan Hecht, PhD

Since October 2006 Stefan Hecht holds the Chair of Organic Chemistry and functional Materials at the Department of Chemistry of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. After his undergraduate studies in chemistry at Humboldt-Universität, he carried out his Ph.D. dissertation work at the University of California, Berkeley, U.S.A., in the area of macromolecular chemistry.

As a Sofja Kovalevskaja-Awardee of the Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation, he established his own research group at Free University Berlin (2001-2004) and then continued his work as a group leader at the Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research in Mülheim an der Ruhr.

For his scientific contributions he has received the MIT Technology Review Top 100 Young Innovator Award (2004) as well as the ADUC Young Investigator Award of the German Chemical Society (2005), among others.

His research focus

The research interests of Stefan Hecht are at the interface of chemistry and physics. In his research group, small and large organic molecules are custom designed to generate functional nanostructures in solution and at surfaces.

Following a “bottom-up” approach, the desired properties are encoded within the individual molecular building blocks such that their interplay is able to generate new functions. Particularly important are both the control over size and shape of molecules, which is realized using so called foldamers, as well as the integration of switching functions, which are mediated by appropriate photoswitchable moieties. By developing appropriate methods for the connection of the individual molecular components and their attachment to the surface, the next generation of “smart materials” is being targeted.

On the road to this attractive goal, fundamental problems of nanoscience are being investigated, exemplified by a recent collaboration with the research groups of Leonhard Grill (FU Berlin) and Christian Joachim (CEMES-CNRS Toulouse) dealing with the first measurement of the conductance of individual long molecular wires (see Science 323, 1193 (2009) and Figure).

Contact: Prof. Stefan Hecht, PhD, e-mail, tel. : +49-(0)30-2093-7365, www.hechtlab.de

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