Distinguished office for IPP scientist
Professor Friedrich Wagner President elect of the European Physical Society
Next President of the European Physical Society (EPS) is Professor Dr. Friedrich Wagner, Scientific Fellow of Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics (IPP), Greifswald Branch Institute. He was elected at the EPS Council meeting on 25 March 2006. The European Physical Society, established to promote physics in Europe, represents over eighty thousand physicists in 38 national member institutions.
As successor to Ove Poulsen from Denmark Friedrich Wagner will commence his two-year term of office as EPS President in April 2007. From 1997 till 2004 he already served as Chairman of the Plasma Physics Division of EPS. The scientific field of Friedrich Wagner (born 1943) is fusion research, to which, after his study of physics and a research appointment in the USA, he has been dedicated since 1975 at Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics in Garching and Greifswald. With the plasmas – low-density ionised gases – investigated there it should be possible to realise a fusion power plant, which like the sun derives energy from fusion of atomic nuclei. For this purpose, the hydrogen plasma fuel has to be confined in a magnetic field cage and heated to high temperatures.
In 1982 Friedrich Wagner found in the ASDEX fusion device at Garching that under certain conditions self-organised transport barriers are set up at the plasma boundary – an outstanding discovery in the development of fusion research. This favourable plasma state, referred to as high-confinement regime, ensures good plasma confinement, making it essential to devices such as the ITER international test reactor. In 1986 Friedrich Wagner was made project leader of the ASDEX experiment and two years later appointed as Scientific Fellow and Director at IPP. He subsequently became project leader of Wendelstein 7-AS at Garching and from 2003 till 2005 head of the follow-up project Wendelstein 7-X, now being built at the Greifswald branch of IPP. From 1997 till 2005 he was a member of the Directorate of IPP; since 1999 Friedrich Wagner has been spokesman of the Greifswald branch and at the same time Professor of Physics at Ernst Moritz Arndt University in Greifswald.