Prof. Dr. Markus Mezger

Markus Mezger studied physics at the University of Stuttgart from 1999-2004. In his diploma thesis at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research he used diffuse X-ray scattering to study short range order and lattice distortions in binary alloys. There, he continued with a project using high energy X-ray reflectivity to study water at hydrophobic interfaces. In 2008 he got his PhD from the University of Stuttgart and received the Otto-Hahn-Medal of the Max Planck Society. From 2008-2010 he was working as a PostDoc at the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley and the Materials Sciences Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab on the development of resonant soft X-ray scattering techniques to study orientational order in polymer thin films. Since October 2010 he is a group leader at the MPI for Polymer Research. In 2013 he was appointed Assistant Professor in the Physics Department at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz where he became Extraordinary Professor in 2019.

Research Interests

Our scientific research focuses on the structural investigation of soft materials at interfaces and in confinement. In particular, we are interested in structures that are caused by the broken symmetry and the specific interaction with interfaces. By developing and using new synchrotron scattering methods in the soft and high-energy X-ray range, we gain insight into the molecular length scale. Time-resolved experiments and quasi-elastic neutron scattering provide information on the dynamics.

Current research topics address the molecular scale structure and dynamics of ionic liquids, electrolyte solutions, water, ice, and polymers.

  • Ionic liquids and aqueous solutions near electrodes and surfaces
  • Confined complex liquids under shear studied by the X-Ray Surface Forces Apparatus
  • Ice premelting near interfaces in porous clay minerals
  • Chain orientation and anisotropy in polymer thin films
  • Characterization of soft matter materials by X-ray scattering

Selected Publications

Weiss, H.; Cheng, H.-W.; Mars, J.; Li, H.; Merola, C.; Renner, F. U.; Honkimäki, V.; Valtiner, M.; Mezger, M.: Structure and Dynamics of Confined Liquids: Challenges and Perspectives for the X-ray Surface Forces Apparatus. Langmuir 35 (51), pp. 16679 - 16692 (2019)
Li, H.; Bier, M.; Mars, J.; Weiss, H.; Dippel, A. C.; Gutowski, O.; Honkimäki, V.; Mezger, M.: Interfacial premelting of ice in nano composite materials. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 21 (7), pp. 3734 - 3741 (2019)
Reichert, P.; Kjaer, K. S.; van Driel, T. B.; Mars, J.; Ochsmann, J. W.; Pontoni, D.; Deutsch, M.; Nielsen, M. M.; Mezger, M.: Molecular scale structure and dynamics at an ionic liquid/electrode interface. Faraday Discussions 206, pp. 141 - 157 (2018)
Mezger, M.; Ocko, B. M.; Reichert, H.; Deutsch, M.: Surface layering and melting in an ionic liquid studied by resonant soft X-ray reflectivity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 110 (10), pp. 3733 - 3737 (2013)
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