9 December 2020

Matthias Mader

Matthias Mader - LMU München

1. Briefly describe the following your current possition and research project.

I‘m a research fellow at the chair of Prof. T. W. Hänsch at LMU, where I investigate Raman spectroscopy of very small volumes of gases using fiber-based micro resonators. The project aims to build a universal, very small and sensitive detector for trace gases.

2. How does your typical workday look like?

In short, and in Corona times, more than before: Métro, boulot, dodo.
On most days, I take the subway to university to go to my lab to supervise students, to think of new ideas, or to prepare and give lectures. As my lecture is on experimental physics and includes demonstration experiments, I give it in LMU’s big physics lecture hall and stream it. It is quite bizarre to be alone (in fact together with the lecture assistant) in lecture hall that could fit up to 630 students.

As the Mensa is closed at the moment or at least it is no fun to go there, I try to bring a well prepared meal for lunch every day. The lunch and, of course, the dinner preparation then are the tasks for the evening.

Matthias Mader working in his laboratory at LMU Munich. © C. Hohmann / MCQST

As science is at most times very exciting, usually a lot of fun, and often of relevance for our society, and as we profit as scientists a lot from public funding, I’m convinced that it is indispensable to explain our research to the society.

What was the biggest challenge you overcame in your professional life?

Finishing my PhD.

Tell us a little bit about science communication and Science Slams you organize-

As science is at most times very exciting, usually a lot of fun, and often of relevance for our society, and as we profit as scientists a lot from public funding, I’m convinced that it is indispensable to explain our research to the society. A very low-threshold way to do so are science slams. Science slams are scientific talk competitions, where scientists present their work within a limited time (usually 10 minutes) and in a very understandable and entertaining way to a wide audience that, in the end, votes on the best talk.

Until corona appeared, I organized slams in Munich at Vereinsheim and Lustspielhaus, but also together with MCQST. Occasionally, I took part at slams all over Germany and, once even in Czech Republic, where I was invited to the European Science Slam championship.

I hope that one day there is again the chance to do things like Science Slams, hopefully also together with MCQST to bring our intriguing research to stage and to a wide audience.


Matthias organized the Science Slam at the Munich Conference on Quantum Science and Technology in 2019 , which took place at the Microsoft headquarters in Munich. You can watch the very entertaining talks on the MCQST YouTube channel .

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