Research in Physics

home / research
I am interested in general relativistic astrophysics with a focus on gravitational waves. Most of my work is concerned with the dynamics of compact binaries (composed of black holes/neutron stars) and the gravitational waves they emit. During my PhD, I studied spin effects in such binaries. Later I investigated dynamical tides, which become important when the orbital motion is in resonance with an oscillation mode of the compact star. This is of particular interest for neutron stars and I was granted a DFG research fellowship for this project. More recently I am also working on the effective-one-body model for gravitational waveforms from compact binaries at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in the group for Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity. In this effective-one-body model, the results of analytic approximations are incorporated synergetically, together with information from full-fledged numerical simulations. This makes it one of the most powerful tools to predict gravitational waveforms for gravitational wave astronomy.


List of publictions from Summary: 3 Phys. Rev. Letters, one being a Research Highlight in Nature, and an Editor’s Suggestion in PRD


PhD thesis: Canonical Formulation of Spin in General Relativity, published in Ann. Phys. (Berlin) 523 (2011) 919-924
Diploma thesis (in German): Supersymmetric Lattice Field Theories


List of talks

Summary: 18 invited talks, including the international MG14 conference, the international GR20 and GR21 conferences, the 524. WE-Heraeus-Seminar, a main talk on the 2010 German Physical Society (DPG) meeting, and one as a candidate for the Thesis Price 2012 of the DPG.

"James B. Hartle Award" for a talk on the GR19 conference

Outreach contributions

Talk on neutron stars and black holes in computers, Potsdam Science Day 2017
Interview for Development Company for Television Program (dctp) on the work of PRL 116 (2016) 181101
Interviews on the first gravitational wave detection by LIGO for: Antenne Brandenburg, Babelsberg Hitradio, Radio Frei, Reuters (TV)
Welt der Physik: Die Suche nach Gravitationswellen
Deutschlandfunk: Delle auf Reisen - Die Fahndung nach den Gravitationswellen
Deutschlandfunk: Neutronensterne - Mehr als ausgebrannte Sternleichen


IMPRS lecture week and geo-Q lecture week no 2 2017, four lectures on Einstein's field equations, spherical stars, and special relativity
Jürgen Ehlers Spring School 2017, three lectures on gravitational waves
Lectures on gravitational waves at the Humboldt University Berlin
geo-Q lecture week no 2 2016, two lectures on electrodynamics and special relativity
IMPRS lecture week no 2 2016, two lectures on generation of gravitational waves and spherical stars
IMPRS lecture week and geo-Q lecture week no 1 2016, five lectures on relativity
IMPRS lecture week no 1 2015, three lectures on relativity
One lecture on representations of semidirect products (in German)


Korteweg–de Vries Equation and Supersymmetric Quantum Mechanics (in German), source code: soli.tar.bz2
Experimental physics (in German): Protokolle zum F-Praktikum