MBI Staff Member – Personal info


  • Head of Department C3 "Femtosecond Spectroscopy on Solids"
  • Coordinator of Project 3.2 "Solids and Nanostructures: Electrons, Spins, and Phonons"
  • Coordinator of Project 3.3 "Transient Structures and Imaging with X-rays"


I am interested in ultrafast and nonlinear phenomena in condensed matter, in particular organic and inorganic solids and nanostructures. To this end, I generate and apply ultrashort pulses in a wide spectral range (THz to hard x-ray) to measure the nonequilibrium dynamics of elementary excitations in solids and the ultrafast structural dynamics of crystalline material. Most recent activities are two-dimensional spectroscopy in the THz frequency range (Figure: two phonon coherences in InSb) and femtosecond x-ray absorption experiments using table top high harmonic sources.

Curriculum vitae

1981-1988 Study of physics at the Technical University (TU) of Munich

1988-1991 PhD Work at TU Munich, Physics Department E11 (Prof. W. Kaiser)

1991 Graduation (Dr. rer. nat.) at the TU

1991-1993 Postdoctoral Researcher at the Physics Department E11, TU Munich

1993-1996 Postdoctoral Researcher at the Max-Born-Institute, Berlin

1997 Postdoctoral Researcher at Bell Laboratories (Lucent), Holmdel, NJ, USA

since 1997 Department head of C3 at the Max-Born-Institute, Berlin

1999 Habilitation at the Humboldt University Berlin

Recent highlight(s)

Electric polarization in the macroscopic world and electrons moving at atomic scales

Wiggling atoms switch the electric polarization of crystals

Quantum Swing - a pendulum that moves forward and backwards at the same time

Amplification of Sound Waves at Extreme Frequencies

Hot means slow: Electron plasma oscillations tuned down with light

The longer the better: Optical long-wavelength pulses generate brilliant ultrashort hard x-ray flashes

MBI Publications

  1. Ultrafast thermalization of hot holes studied femtosecond infrared spectroscopy

    M. Woerner, T. Elsaesser, C. Ludwig, M.T. Portella, W. Frey, W. Kaiser

    Lietuvos fizikos zurnalas 34 (1994) 126-129
  2. Capture of hot holes by shallow acceptors in p-type GaAs studied by picosecond infrared spectroscopy

    M. Woerner, A. Lohner, T. Elsaesser, W. Kaiser

    Phys. Rev. B 47 (1993) 12498-12509
  3. Generation of synchronized femtosecond pulses independently tunable in the mid-infrared

    C. Ludwig, W. Frey, M. Woerner, T. Elsaesser

    Opt. Commun. 102 (1993) 447-451
  4. Hot hole capture by shallow acceptors in p-type GaAs studied by picosecond infrared spectroscopy

    A. Lohner, M. Woerner, T. Elsaesser, W. Kaiser

    Ultrafast Phenomena VIII Springer Berlin (1993) 416-417