Illustration of our research topics

Our research group at Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH) engages in fundamental experimental research in condensed-matter physics and on novel functional materials. We profit from the vivid and inspiring Natural and Materials Science environment of the Hamburg metropolitan area, encompassing Hamburg University (UHH), the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht for Coastal and Materials Research (HZG), the European X-Ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) and the Deutsche Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY). We are member of the Centre for Advanced Materials (ZHM Hamburg) and of the Collaborative Research Initiative SFB 986 “Tailor-Made Multi-Scale Materials Systems M3”. Our research projects focus on how condensed matter behaves in extreme spatial confinement, most prominently in nanoporous media, and on how to employ this fundamental knowledge for the design of advanced materials.

Feel invited to read more about our research and teaching activities, to browse our publication list or to get an impression of our group life (group members & alumni and events).

At present our main efforts are directed at an understanding of:


  • Self-assembly, phase transitions, and dynamics of soft molecular condensed matter in geometrical confinement.

  • Adsorption-induced deformation and elastocapillarity upon condensation of liquids in porous media, most prominently hierarchical porous silicon and silica.

  • Fluid transport and rheology of liquids in porous media, in particular in nanoporous solids (Nanofluidics).

Switchable imbibition in nanoporous gold rise experiment

  • Design principles for mechanical and photonic metamaterials based on combinations of hierarchical porous solids with functional soft molecular fillings (electrolytes, (bio-)polymers, liquid crystals). 




  • The fundamental structural and statistical properties of fluid interfaces , that is the relationship between the thermodynamics, the microscopic structure of these interfaces and their microscopic and macroscopic hydrodynamics.

Small-angle X-ray scattering experiment at a liquid crystal confined in tubular anodic aluminium oxide nanochannels


  • Liquid wetting and spreading at planar interfaces.

Sessile water droplet on mesoporous silicon