News: Heike Pfau is honored with the Otto Hahn Medal

June 30, 2016

Heike Pfau from the Physics of Quantum Materials department is honored with the Otto Hahn Medal of the Max Planck Society for the year 2015. This prize is awarded to young scientists for outstanding scientific achievements at the beginning of their careers.

Heike Pfau is awarded for her low-temperature experiments on intermetallic compounds, especially the heavy-fermion system YbRh2Si2. With combined thermal and electrical transport measurements on this compound, she made the first-ever observation of a violation of the Wiedemann-Franz law – a corner stone of metal physics. This result has dramatic consequences as it implies a breakdown of the standard quasiparticle picture. 


Heike Pfau
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