Institute for Condensed Matter Physics (IPKM)

Our aim is the understanding and control of condensed matter with a focus on soft matter and complex systems. This includes polymers, amphiphiles, gels, colloidal dispersions and biologically produced materials.

Focus on structural complexity

Condensed matter physics deals with fluids and solids composed of a macroscopic number of particles. In the past, the focus was on “hard” materials such as semiconductors and metals. In recent years, many researchers became interested in “soft” materials, and they are now the main research area of our Institute. Soft materials are for instance polymers, emulsions, gels, rubber, sediments, and many more, including biologically produced materials.

In contrast to hard materials, which are usually homogeneous on mesoscopic scales, soft materials are structured on different hierarchy levels, and they have a variety of different characteristic time scales. This complexity presents a great challenge to the scientific investigation. The aim is to understand the macroscopic properties such as viscosity, elasticity, electric conductivity, etc. and their dependence on external parameters (pressure, temperature) in terms of the microscopic structure. This requires not only the collaboration between experimental and theoretical physicists, but also with chemists, who can produce materials with a desired structure and composition, and with engineers, who are interested in the technological applications.

How do microscopic structures influence macroscopic properties?


IPKM Office

  Name Group Contact
Prof. Dr. Regine von Klitzing
Managing director of the Institute for Condensed Matter Physics
Soft Matter at Interfaces
+49 6151 16-24506
S2|04 102
Barbara Böttcher
+49 6151 16-21502
S2|07 81
  Name Group Contact
Apl. Prof. Thomas Blochowicz
Structure and Dynamics of Amorphous Systems
+49 6151 16-21601
Prof. Dr. Barbara Drossel
Theory of Complex Systems
+49 6151 16-21321
Prof. PhD. Marco Durante
Radiation Biophysics, Biophysics Department (GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research)
Prof. Dr. Regine von Klitzing
Soft Matter at Interfaces
+49 6151 16-24506
Prof. Dr. Benno Liebchen
Theory of Soft Matter
+49 6151 16-24509
Prof. Dr. Emanuel Schneck
Soft Matter Biophysics
+49 6151 16-20530
Prof. Dr. Michael Vogel
Molecular Dynamics of Soft Matter
+49 6151 16-21500


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Technical University of Darmstadt

Institute for Condensed Matter Physics

Hochschulstr. 6–8
64289 Darmstadt

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