Former Fellows – Incomings


Ongun Berk Kazanci

Ongun Berk Kazanci holding his certificate and shaking hands with a man Copyright: © E3D

Dr. Kazanci is an Associate Professor of Indoor Environmental Quality and HVAC Systems at the Technical University of Denmark.

Stay: June 2023

Hosts: Professor Christoph van Treeck (Institute of Energy Efficiency and Sustainable Building), Prof. Dirk Müller (Chair of Energy Efficient Buildings and Indoor Climate), and Prof. Marcel Schweiker (Healthy Living Spaces).

Dr. Kazanci’s research interests include indoor environmental quality, thermal comfort, water-based radiant heating and cooling systems, and building energy simulation. During his visit, in addition to touring the research infrastructure of the institute and preparing collaborative projects in the areas of local comfort and resilience of buildings, he also visited the Hambach open pit coal mine to see first-hand the challenges the energy transition poses, well-demonstrated by the example of the lignite mining area.

It was an honor and a privilege to visit E3D - Institute of Energy Efficiency and Sustainable Building at the RWTH Aachen University as a Theodore-von-Kármán Fellow. I had inspiring and though-provoking talks and discussions with my host Dr. Marc Syndicus and other colleagues at E3D. I had the chance of visiting the excellent research facilities of E3D. I also had the chance to visit the Hambach mine which was impressive in its size. It was an extremely productive and rewarding visit and it created the fundaments of a long-lasting and a productive collaboration in the areas of, including but not limited to, thermal comfort and resilience of buildings. Many thanks to Explorative Research Space of RWTH Aachen University for making this visit possible.

Ongun Berk Kazanci



Nobuhiro Yoshikawa

Two men in front of machine Copyright: © ITA

Since 2005 Nobuhiro Yoshikawa has been Professor at The University of Tokyo, Institute of Industrial Science, Japan.

Stay: August 2021

Host: Professor Thomas Gries, Chair of Textile Machine Engineering and Institute of Textile Technology, ITA.

Professor Yoshikawa is an internationally recognized expert in the area of high-pressure hydrogen composite tanks and advanced methodology of strength estimation of carbon fiber reinforced plastics based on micro- and meso-scale finite element simulation. He came to Aachen with the help of a Theodore von Kármán Fellowship. During his research stay, he gave three lectures titled “Hydrogen Society – Japan,” “Thermal Process Simulation for CFRP Tanks,” and “Fatigue Life Prediction by Means of Microscopic Stress Analysis” at ITA.

I appreciate Professor Gries, Dr. Sackmann and research staff in ITA, RWTH Aachen University for the kind arrangement to take part in this distinguished program. We can made huge step of progress in the research collaboration of manufacturing and strength analysis of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic equipment especially concerning high pressure hydrogen tank. We also have been provided precious opportunities of discussion with DLR and Fraunhofer researchers concerning advanced manufacturing technology of thermoplastic carbon fiber composite. I expect farther step of our collaboration in health monitoring of hydrogen tank, fatigue life estimation of composite, thermoplastic forming simulation of composite and so on.

Nobuhiro Yoshikawa



Eyal Dassau

Eyal Dassau Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

Since 2016 Eyal Dassau has been Senior Research Fellow at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Cambridge (Massachusetts), USA.

Stay: July 2017

Hosts: Professor Klaus Steffen Leonhardt, Philips Chair for Medical Information Technology, and Professor Nikolaus Marx, Clinic for Cardiology, Pneumology, Angiology and Internal Intensive Medicine at Uniklinik RWTH Aachen.

Dr. Dassau, an internationally recognized expert in the development of artificial pancreas devices, whose expertise is instrumental in translating engineering concepts into medical practice, came to Aachen with the help of a Theodore von Kármán Fellowship. His activities during his stay resulted in a journal publication and a conference contribution. Furthermore, a good basis for future collaboration has been established.

I would like to thank my hosts [Professors Leonhardt and Marx] as well as the fellowship program and Dr. Misgeld for the organization and the very productive collaboration that has started and will continue as a result of this initiative. I was very impressed with the level and depth of the multiple research projects that his [Professor Leonhardt’s] team is running. The fellowship program enabled an interactive collaboration between my research team at Harvard University and the Helmholtz Institute for Biomedical Engineering led by Professor Leonhardt and will benefit both our universities - RWTH Aachen University and Harvard.

I am very thankful for the opportunity to take part in this distinguished program.

Eyal Dassau



Michael S. Ellison

Three men Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

Michael S. Ellison was a professor for 30 years at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina, USA. He has continued to work there as a research professor since his retirement in May 2014.

Stay: June 2015

Host: Professor Thomas Gries, Chair of Textile Machine Engineering and Institute of Textile Technology, ITA, and Professor Michael Herty, Department of Mathematics.

Professor Ellison came to RWTH in June 2005 as part of the Theodore von Kármán Fellowship. During his research stay he worked on the topic of "Incorporating Intelligence in 3-D Spacer Fabrics“ and gave the university-wide lecture "Textiles at Clemson University: From Yarn Spinning to Web Spinning.“ Collaboration with ITA was intensified during his stay. A strategic partnership between the universities is being planned.

(…) I was finally able to visit ITA and work in the superb facilities there. RWTH University is a remarkable institution. It is important for both countries to facilitate the exchange of scholars. The Kármán fellows program is an excellent model.

Michael S. Ellison

You can find the entire interview with Michael S. Ellison on the research alumni webpage.



Markus Pauly

Prof. Markus Pauly Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

Professor of Plant and Microbial Biology at the University of California, Berkeleyand Program Manager at the Energy Biosciences Institute, Berkeley, CA.

Research Stay: July 2014

Hosts: Prof. Björn Usadel, Chair of Botany and Molecular Genetics, Institute of Biology I, and Prof. Antje Spieß, Enzyme Process Technology (AVT).

Markus Pauly came to RWTH Aachen in July 2014 through a Theodore von Kármán Fellowship. During his two-week research stay, among other activities, he gave a lecture on the topic of biofuels.

You can find an interview with Professor Pauly on the Research Alumni website.

... you can really feel how enthusiastic my colleagues here in Aachen are about their research, and that they want to think outside the box. This was quite striking to me, because it is something you don’t experience that much when visiting other universities and departments. I feel very honored about this invitation from my alma mater and I am glad to receive the Kármán-Fellowship to support my research.

Markus Pauly



Steven L. Small

Steven L. Small Copyright: © private/Small

Director of the Department of Neurology and the Neuroscience Imaging Center at the University of California, Irvine

Research Stay: February to March 2014

Hosts: Prof. Ferdinand C. Binkofski, Chair of Clinical Cognition Research, Department of Neurology, UKA, Prof. Iring Koch,Chair of Cognitive and Experimental Psychology, UKA, Prof. Christopher Marc Schlick, Chair and Institute of Industrial Engineering and Ergonomics, Fac. 4, and Prof. Jon Shah, Institute of Neurosciences and Medicine, FZ Jülich

Prof. Small came with his colleague Prof. Ana Solodkin to RWTH in February 2014 through a Theodore von Kármán Fellowship an die RWTH. During their research stay, they held a workshop titled "Language, Motor Functions and Brain Modeling in the Solodkin/Small Brain Circuits Laboratory" at Aachen University Hospital.

You can find the complete interview with Steven L. Small on the Research Alumni page.

It was my first time in Aachen and I did not know before that RWTH Aachen University is such a strong engineering school, one of the premier engineering schools in Germany. I knew its reputation as a medical center and as a medical school. But now I have been invited by the enormously talented Professor Ferdinand Binkofski and it was a great pleasure to be able to spend my time with him. The other thing I did not know was the relationship between RWTH Aachen and Forschungszentrum Jülich. I was impressed by the Research Alliance (JARA) which is really strong and enhances the work of both the cognitive neurology group in Aachen and the imaging group in Jülich. It is quite clear that this collaboration is good for both institutions.
At RWTH Aachen there is one of the premiere major research groups of neurology in the world. I think there is a tremendous collective environment for a medical school. Moreover, the university’s engineering program adds a technical perspective – so to go to RWTH is a very good idea.

Steven L. Small



Jaakko Malmivuo

Jaakko Malmivuo Copyright: © private/Malmivuo

Professor at the School of Electrical Engineering, Aalto University, Finland

Research Stay: April to July 2014

Hosts: Professor Steffen Leonhardt, Chair of Medical Information Technology (MedIT) and Professor Klaus M. Radermacher, Chair of Medical Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering

Professor Malmivuo came to Aachen for a four-month research stay as a Theodore von Kármán Fellow. He held several lectures, including the public von Kármán Lecture, "Short History of Biomagnetism."

You can find the complete interview with Jaakko Malmivuo on the Research Alumni page.

Besides my interest in research on bioelectromagnetism I am very interested in education. I have written a book on bioelectromagnetism with Professor Robert Plonsey, and I have lectured on this topic at several universities all over the world. Professor Leonhardt was aware of this and he was interested in developing the education at MedIT. When we met at a conference in July 2013 in Osaka, we discussed my possible lecturing in Aachen and this came true during the 2014 summer term in the form of the Theodore von Kármán Fellowship. This has been a great honor to me.”

Jaakko Malmivuo



Wieslaw Woszczyk

Prof. Wieslaw Woszczyk Copyright: © Christin Wannagat

James McGill Professor and Director McGill Recording Studios, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

Research Stay: April 2014

Hosts/Coordinators: Prof. Michael Vorländer, Institute of Technical Acoustics (ITA) and Prof. Torsten Kuhlen, Virtual Reality Group and Chair of Computer Science 12

In April 2014, Professor Woszczyk came to Aachen as a Theodore von Kármán Fellow. He gave a lecture on "The Virtual Haydn" at the Aachen Department of Hochschule für Musik und Tanz, Cologne. For the complete interview, please refer to our Research Alumni web pages.

It is an honor for me to be recognized for the Kármán Fellowship and to be invited to an experience like this! I am still floating on many experiences that are crushing at me like I am on a boat in waves. It is fantastic! The most fun was the first day when we went to see the CAVE and Frank Wefers and Torsten Kuhlen set it up for us. It was also great talking to all those involved, e.g. when we talked to Michael Vorländer and his students at the Colloquium. They are all doing this fantastic work and have exciting developments.

The Exploratory Research Space has been very helpful and kind. I wanted to thank them again.

Wieslaw Woszczyk



Anotida Madzvamuse

Dr. Anotida Madzvamuse

Senior Lecturer, University of Sussex, UK

Research Stay: September 2013

Hosts/Coordinators: Prof. Rudolf Leube, Institute of Molecular and Cellular Anatomy (MOCA) und Prof. i.R. Dr.-Ing. Dietrich Meyer-Ebrecht, Institute of Imaging and Computer Vision (LfB)

The visit was excellent in all aspects. First, I was so pleased to be awarded the prestigious Theodore von Kármán Fellowship which supported financially my two weeks I stayed in the RWTH Aachen University Guest House. I was most welcome in the laboratory. For a mathematician, it was an eye-opener to witness cutting-edge experiments, descriptions and demonstrations of how research in “wet-science” is undertaken. To witness how data is collected and stored from a mouse model to microscopic levels was impressive and I thank Dr. Claudia Krusche for giving me such a wonderful and unforgettable experience.

Many thanks to the faculty, researchers and students at both MOCA and ISC-7 who made my stay such a joyful and fruitful occasion.
Thank you very much!

Anotida Madzvamuse




Jayant Baliga

Prof. Jayant Baliga Copyright: © E.ON ERC

North Carolina State University, North Carolina, USA
Distinguished University Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering, Director, Power Semiconductor Research Center, NC State University

Research Stay: June to July 2013

Coordinators: Prof. Rik De Doncker (Chair of Power Electronics and Electrical Drives), Prof. Hendrik Bluhm (Chair of Experimental Physics)

Prof. Baliga came for a two-month stay during summer 2013 as a Theodore von Kármán Fellow at the E.ON Research Center and gave a lecture on "Power Electronic Building Elements“.

You can read an interview with Jayant Baliga on the Research Alumni web pages.

First, I was surprised and impressed by the scope, the size, the magnitude and diversity of the program here. I participated in the E.ON ERC’s scientific advisory board meeting where all the activities were presented and people from the distinct institutes and research areas came together. It was very impressive to see how well all this is coordinated. The other impressive thing for me is the large amount of interest that students have in the field of power electronics! In my own university I usually have no more than 15 students in my class, whereas here at RWTH Aachen I have 45 students! It is very impressive to see the difference!

Jayant Baliga



Cynthia Kuhn

Cynthia Kuhn

Duke University, North Carolina, USA
Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Professor of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology

Research Stay: March 2012

Coordinators: Prof. Florian Zepf (Junior Professor for Translational Brain Research in Psychiatry und Neurology III, University Hospital Aachen, Forschungszentrum Jülich), Prof. Rüdiger von Nitzsch (Teaching and Research Area Decision Theory and Financial Services)

In March 2012, Professor Kuhn completed a research stay at University Hospital Aachen and Forschungszentrum Jülich. She participated in the symposium "Stimulating New Research on Serotonergic Neurotransmission from a Developmental Perspective," where she presented a paper titled "Serotonin in Adolescence: Role in Behavioral Inhibition.”

You can read an interview with Cynthia Kuhn on the Research Alumni web pages.

I have been collaborating with Dr. Florian Zepf, the only individual in the world who can manipulate serotonin function in adolescent humans. We are collaborating to develop new nutritional approaches toward enhancing and impairing serotonin function to study its role in behavior in healthy and psychiatrically ill adolescents.

My most rewarding experience was participating in [Dr. Zepf’s research group's] lab meetings, and having a reciprocal scientific interchange with colleagues that I would otherwise never have even met. The tangible outcomes of my stay are an improved understanding of how my research in animals integrates with and is informed by the human studies that are being conducted in Aachen.

Cynthia Kuhn



Barbara Shinn-Cunningham

Professor Shinn-Cunningham Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

Boston University, Depts. of Cognitive and Neural Systems and Biomedical Engineering, Director of Graduate Studies, CNS, USA

Research Stay at RWTH Aachen: April 2012

Host: Professor Michael Vorländer (Institute of Technical Acoustics), Prof. Iring Koch (Chair of Psychology I), Prof. Wolfgang Dott (Institute of Hygiene and Environmental Medicine)

In April 2012, Professor Shinn-Cunningham was a visiting scholar at RWTH Aachen. She participated in the “Impact of Noise on Public Health” research project and an international sympoisum on "Noise, Cognition, and Health".

You can read an interview with Professor Shinn-Cunningham on the Research Alumni web pages.

I had a very stimulating stay in Aachen, with many detailed discussions about research both in ITA and the Institute of Psychology. I learned a great deal from my stay, and was very impressed by the quality of the students and the research projects underway. (…) I became familiar with work that I had not run across, but now cite all the time. (…) The best part of my interactions was becoming familiar with the work of Iring Koch and Vera Lawo. (…) [Their] work is very close to my own, but from a psychological perspective. (…) I am enjoying building new collaborative ties with them, which would not have been possible without my trip to Aachen

Barbara Shinn-Cunningham



Darren Dahl

Darren Dahl

Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia, Canada
Research Stay: September 2011
Coordinators: Professor Frank Piller, Professor Robert Schmitt, Professor Iring Koch

An interview with Professor Dahl is available on the Research Alumni web pages.

There was an excellent opportunity to develop research relationships on this visit – start new projects and provide advice to researchers at the school.

The interaction with students and researchers at RWTH Aachen was excellent. The group provided excellent hospitality and the seminars and presentations I was involved in were well received. I received great feedback and felt I was able to help a number of students in their projects.

Darren Dahl