Department of Physics

Kepler Center for Astro and Particle Physics

Participating Groups

Theoretical High Energy Physics

Prof. Dr. Barbara Jäger

The Theoretical High Energy Physics group explores the phenomenology of elementary particles. Our goal is to better understand the interactions that govern the dynamics of elementary particles and to identify and interpret possible signatures of new physical phenomena that cannot be explained by the Standard Model of elementary particles.

Experimental Astroparticle Physics

Prof. Dr. Josef Jochum

The common motivation for our activities is the search for physics beyond the Standard Model of elementary particle physics. The two focal points here are the search for dark matter and the investigation of the properties of neutrinos.

Computational Physics

Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Kley

The research of the group focuses on various aspects of the early stages of stellar evolution. These include: Theory of accretion disks, formation and evolution of planetary systems from dust aggregates to full-grown planets, and the formation and propagation of jets. We use various computational methods such as molecular dynamics simulations, SPH simulations, and grid-based magnetohydrodynamics and radiation hydrodynamics simulations.

Theoretical Astrophysics

Prof. Dr. Konstantinos Kokkotas

The research focus of the group is the investigation of the sources of gravitational waves. Neutron stars and black holes, both isolated and in multiple systems, are the most promising sources of directly detectable gravitational waves. The Tübingen working group has specialized in using the gravitational wave spectrum of neutron stars to determine their exact internal structure; this method is called "gravitational wave asteroseismology".

Neutrino Physics

Prof. Dr. Tobias Lachenmaier

The research focus of the group is neutrino oscillations and low energy neutrino astronomy with participation in the Borexino, DoubleChooz, JUNO, and ANNIE experiments.

High Energy Astrophysics

Prof. Dr. Andrea Santangelo

The working group is engaged in the exploration of the universe in a wide energy window from X-rays to TeV gamma rays and ultra-high energy cosmic rays. The scope of work includes observations, data analysis and interpretation with respect to the underlying physical processes as well as the development of detector systems for high-energy radiation. The institute is involved in international space missions (XMM-Newton, INTEGRAL, eROSITA, ATHENA, EUSO, XIPE, eXTP) and Earth-based telescope systems (HESS, CTA).

Ultrarelativistic Heavy Ion Physics

Prof. Dr. Hans-Rudolf Schmidt

Heavy ion collisions at ultra-relativistic energies offer the unique opportunity to study matter in the laboratory at extremely high densities or temperatures. The baryonic densities produced in this way otherwise occur only in the interiors of neutron stars. Temperatures of up to 1012K can be produced; these are values like those that prevailed in the universe a few microseconds after the Big Bang, and at which a phase transition from a quark-gluon plasma to hadronic matter occurred.

Space-Based Astronomy

Prof. Dr. Beate Stelzer

The group is involved in multi-wavelength observations of the formation and evolution of cool stars. The observations include a variety of telescopes, both ground-based small and large telescopes (e.g. ESO/VLT) and by instruments on space satellites (e.g. XMM-Newton, Chandra, Kepler).

Theoretical Nuclear and Particle Physics

Prof. Dr. Werner Vogelsang

Our research activities focus on quantum chromodynamics (QCD), the established theory of strong interactions. We perform phenomenological studies of lepton-proton and proton-proton scattering, with the goal of using the available experimental data to learn about the distribution of quarks and gluons inside a proton. We are particularly interested in finding out how quarks and gluons determine the spin of the proton. Our work also includes QCD precision calculations for observables at hadron colliders, including the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN and machines in the US.

Optical and UV Astronomy

Prof. Dr. Klaus Werner

In our group we are engaged both experimentally in the field of UV astronomy and theoretically in the field of quantitative spectral analyses of stellar spectra (white dwarfs, neutron stars, etc.) and spectra of accretion disks around compact stellar remnants. For spectral analyses, we use both ground-based and space-based observatories in a wide range of wavelengths, from the infrared to the X-ray region of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Theoretical Hadron Physics

Prof. Dr. Thomas Gutsche