Akademische Ausbildung


1969 – 1975     Studium der Physik, RWTH Aachen


10. 10. 1975      Diplom Hauptprüfung,

Diplomarbeit "Röntgenographische Eigenspannungsmessungen an texturierten Kohlenstoffstählen"


10. 07. 1981      Promotion zum Dr. rer. nat. an der RWTH Aachen, Dissertation "Transporteigenschaften amorpher Spingläser bei tiefen Temperaturen"
(Prof. Dr. E. F. Wassermann, Prof. Dr. W. Sander)


23. 01. 1991      Habilitation an der Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Habilitationsschrift "Nicht-Gleichgewichtserstarrung unterkühlter Metallschmelzen"
(Gutachter: Prof. Dr. B. Feuerbacher, Prof. Dr. W. Kurz, Prof. Dr. K. Urban, Prof. Dr. H. Zabel)

Vortrag: Magnetische Flüssigkeiten


03. 05. 1991      Antrittsvorlesung „Dendritisches Wachstum“, Erlangung der Lehrbefugnis (venia legendi) an der Fakultät für Physik und Astronomie der Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Experimentalphysik



Berufliche Laufbahn


1976             Wissenschaftlicher Angestellter am II. Physikalischen Institut der RWTH Aachen, Lehrstuhl B


1977 – 1983      Wissenschaftlicher Assistent an der Universität – GH – Duisburg, Laboratorium für Tieftemperaturphysik


1983 – 2014      Wissenschaftlicher Angestellter und Gruppenleiter im Institut für Materialphysik im Weltraum (vormals Institut für Raumsimulation), Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt Köln


03. 05. 1991      Privat-Dozent in Experimentalphysik, Ruhr-Universität Bochum


30. 01. 1998      Außerplanmäßiger Professor in Physik, Ruhr-Universität Bochum


06. 12. 2001      Universitätsprofessor in Physik an der Ruhr-Universität Bochum


seit 2014         Professor Emeritus





27. 11. 1986      ERICH TREFFTZ Preis der Deutschen Forschungs- und Versuchsanstalt für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DFVLR)


1988, 1996       Forschungssemester, verrliehen durch Vorstand des Deutschen Zentrums für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR)


14. 11. 1990      Seniorwissenschaftler des Deutschen Zentrums für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR)


03. 10. 1996      Consultant Professor of Physics” der Northwestern Polytechnical University Xi’an, V.R. China


25. 09. 2000      ”Shaanxi Friendship” Award, Xi’an, V.R. China


30. 09. 2000      ”Chinese National Friendship Award”, Peking, V.R. China


01. 11. 2001      ”Honorary Professor of Yanshan University”, Qinhuangdao, V.R. China


18. 08. 2005      ”Consultant Professor of Physics”, Northeastern University Shenyang, V.R. China


15. 10. 2007      ”Lee Hsun Lecture Award”, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenyang, V.R. China


12. 08. 2015      Certification of Excellence of Reviewing, Acta Materialia


01. 09. 2017      RQ Fellowship Award, International Conferences of Rapidly Quenched & Metastable Materials (RQ)


Laudatiio by Alain Lindsay Greer

Dieter M. Herlach
(Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, Germany)
Dieter Herlach began his research at RWTH Aachen, working with Wassermann and von Löhneysen on metallic glasses and amorphous spin glasses. His first journal paper (1981) was on ‘Phonon scattering by electrons and low-energy excitations in a metallic glass’ [Solid State Commun. 39 (1981) 591], and an early paper ‘The evaluation of hyperfine field distributions in overlapping and asymmetric Mössbauer spectra: a study of the amorphous alloy Pd77.5–xCu6Si16.5Fex’ [J. Phys. F 13 (1983) 675] is now very well cited (205 cites). His work on containerless solidification started when he moved to the DLR (then the DFVLR) near Cologne. The key first paper ‘Containerless undercooling of bulk Fe-Ni melts’ [Appl. Phys. Lett. 49 (1986) 1339] now has 72 citations. This work was at first largely based on electromagnetic levitation (EML). Dieter is prominent in developing this and other methods to achieve containerless undercooling and solidification. Dieter’s work has also greatly advanced our understanding of the properties of liquids, particularly undercooled liquids: enthalpy, specific heat, surface tension, viscosity, liquid-liquid phase separation, short-range ordering.
Dieter’s publication record is excellent. Looking at the Web of Science on today’s date, he has 291 papers, attracting some 350 citations per year, and with a Hirsch index of 44. His most cited publication is his review ‘Nonequilibrium solidification of undercooled metallic melts’ [Mater. Sci. Eng. R 12 (1994) 177] (375 cites).
Dieter has consistently been a leader in his field in particular he has, as sole author or as the leader of co-authors, been responsible for several key review articles that have served to define the field and identify key issues for future research. Throughout his carrier he has led many prominent research collaborations, ranging from an early EU Brite-Euram project to DFG Schwerpunkt programmes. His efforts have been very influential, for example in attracting support for comparative studies of metallic and colloidal systems. Most importantly he is the eminent person in the field of containerless processing and solidification – thereby setting priorities for future research funding. Additionally he has chaired European Space Agency, and other, committees and working groups.


25. 09. 2018     Ehrenmitgliedschaft, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Materialkunde (DGM)





1976             ImperialCollege of Science and Technology

University of London (U.K.)

Professor Dr. Brian Coles


1988             Department of Materials Science & Metallurgy

University of Cambridge (U.K.)

Professor Dr. Alain Lindsay Greer


1989             Division of Engineering & Applied Sciences

Harvard University, Cambridge (USA)

Professor Dr. Frans Spaepen


1997             Gordon McKay Laboratory

Harvard University, Cambridge (USA)

Professor Dr. Michael J. Aziz





Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft


Deutsche Gesellschaft für Materialkunde


European Physical Society


The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society


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