Wolfgang Pauli Centre



Nobel prize winner G. 't Hooft at the inauguration of the Wolfgang Pauli Centre

The Wolfgang Pauli Centre (WPC) unites the various theory groups of Hamburg University and DESY in the areas of particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology, mathematical physics, condensed matter, quantum optics and chemical physics.

The WPC is named after the theoretical physicist Wolfgang Pauli. From 1923 to 1928 he taught physics at the University of Hamburg. During Pauli's years in Hamburg, quantum mechanics was invented, and Pauli was one of the key players in this process, in close contact and collaboration with Bohr, Born, Heisenberg and others.

This period was scientifically very fruitful, with pioneering work on the anomalous Zeeman effect, electron spin and Pauli equation, and the electron gas in metals. In 1925 Pauli published his work on the "exclusion principle" for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize 20 years later. In addition to research, the training of graduate students is a key goal of the WPC. The WPC supports new ideas at the intersection of the present research fields with workshops and special lectures by visiting professors. An annual Wolfgang-Pauli-Lecture by a non-tenured researcher promotes distinguished young theorists.

Research Teams