The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology (ILT), Aachen, Germany, has appointed laser physicist Dr Constantin Häfner as its new Director, effective November 2019. Häfner is currently Program Director for Advanced Photon Technologies at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) in California, USA.
Häfner graduated from the University of Konstanz with a degree in physics, later obtaining a PhD in laser physics from the University of Heidelberg. In 2004, he joined the Nevada Terawatt Facility at the USA’s University of Nevada, joining LLNL in 2006. As Program Director for Advanced Photon Technologies, he reportedly led the development of powerful laser systems and conducted R&D into new laser technologies.
On his new appointment he stated, “By drawing together top-class research and industrial applications, and cultivating a direct and open dialog with its customers, Fraunhofer ILT brings innovative and competitive solutions faster to the market. These excellent results are a product of the expertise and passion of the institute’s employees. I’m delighted to have the opportunity to perpetuate and build on this culture.”
“Fraunhofer ILT sets international standards in training of future laser scientists and engineers for both industry and the research community,” he continued. “It is important to me that we integrate and promote people of different genders, origins and cultures with their many different points of view. Diversity is a source of new ideas and approaches and enhances our competitiveness significantly.”
In addition to his role at Fraunhofer ILT, Dr Häfner will also hold the associated Chair for Laser Technology LLT at RWTH Aachen University, where he will be involved in a number of R&D activities. These will include interdisciplinary research projects conducted by sixteen different RWTH institutes as part of the Research Center for Digital Photonic Production (RCDPP), and joint research with industry in the Research Campus Digital Photonic Production (DPP).