Prof. Dr. Alexander M. Bradshaw

Honorary Professor at TUM since 2000


Surface Physics


Professor Bradshaw studied chemistry at Queen Mary College (University of London) and obtained his PhD in physical chemistry in 1969. After spending time at TUM conducting research with Professor Dietrich Menzel, he moved to the Fritz-Haber Institute (Max-Planck Society), Berlin, in 1976. His research has been in the area of surface physics. Two of his major areas of interest have been the development of infrared reflection spectroscopy for the characterisation of adsorbed species and the quantitative determination of their structure with photoelectron diffraction. He has also made significant contributions to the understanding of photoionisation in molecules and clusters as well as to the development of instrumentation for synchrotron radiation. Prof. Bradshaw has published over 450 scientific articles in journals and books.

He is currently working with Professor Thomas Hamacher (TUM) on the question of sustainability in future energy systems, in particular on the role of nuclear fusion, as well as on the supply of rare elements for energy technologies. Bradshaw co-founded one of the first open access journals – New Journal of Physics – and was an initiator of the first German science year “Jahr der Physik – 2000”.


    • Member of national academies Leopoldina (since 2002), acatech (since 2003) and Royal Society (since 2008)
    • Scientific director of the Max-Planck Institute for Plasma Physics, Garching and Greifswald (1999-2008)
    • President of the German Physical Society (DPG) (1998-2000), honorary member since 2012
    • Scientific director of the synchrotron radiation source BESSY in Berlin (1981-1989) (not continuously)
    • Scientific Member and head of the Department of Surface Physics at the Fritz-Haber Institute (Max-Planck Society) (1980-1998)


    • Commander of the Order of the British Empire (2007)
    • Rudolf-Jaeckel Prize (2007)
    • Honorary doctorate, University of London (2005)
    • Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2002)
    • John Yarwood Medal (1996)