“Curriculum Vitae“ of Thomas Trickl


                                  Born in Munich on March 27, 1953



                                  Karlsruher Institut für Technologie, IMK-IFU

                                  Kreuzeckbahnstr. 19

                   82467    Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

                                                          Tel. 0049-8821-183-209

                                                          E Mail: thomas.trickl@kit.edu


1972-1978      Studies of physics at the Technical University of Munich, diploma work on radiation-induced lattice defects in molybdenum, characterized by 181Ta Mößbauer-spectrometry (supervisor: Prof. W. Gläser)

1979-1982      Doctoral studies at the Max-Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, title of thesis: “Laser-spectroscopic Studies of Iodine Monofluoride, formed in the Reactions of Fluorine Atoms with Iodine Halides” (supervisor: Prof. H. Walther)

January 1983: Graduation at the University of Munich (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität)

1982-1986      Scientist at the Max-Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, starting in 1983: develop­ment of a state-selected beam of nitrogen ions generated by resonance-enhanced multi-photon ionization (division of Prof. K. L. Kompa)

1986-1987      Postdoctoral Fellow at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and the University of California in Berkeley (host: Prof. Y. T. Lee), highlights:

§     development of the spectrally brightest tunable extreme-ultraviolet (XUV) radiation source to that date (bandwidth in the 90-120 nm range roughly 155 MHz), based on sum-frequency mixing with a near-transform-limited powerful dye laser system (130 mJ, 78 MHz bandwidth), in co-operation with Dr. A. Kung

§     Design and construction of a large molecular-beam photo-ionization experiment

§     High-resolution photo-ionization spectroscopy of H2, N2 (substantial improve­ment of the value of the N2 ionization energy), and Kr (XUV frequency deter­mination at an accuracy level of 6´10–9, detailed hyperfine and lifetime studies for five states)

§     Development of a liquid-nitrogen-cooled pulsed source of hydrogen molecules; photo-ionization studies of H2 and (H2)2 with tunable XUV light at 74 and 80 nm

§     1986: Nobel Price in Chemistry for Prof. Y. T. Lee

1988-1989      Scientist at the the Max-Planck Institute for Extraterrestric Physics; DFG-funded project on the investigation of ion-molecule reactions under interstellar conditions

1989                Second visit to Berkeley, attempt of a high-accuracy measurement (error < 15 MHz) of the ionization energy of H2 with two transform-limited pulsed dye lasers

Since 1990      Senior scientist at the Fraunhofer Institute for Atmospheric Environmental Research (IFU) in Garmisch-Partenkirchen (since 2002: Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe (now: KIT), IMK-IFU); field: development and application of laser remote sensing methods; highlights:

System Development:

Development of seven wide-range mobile and stationary lidar systems for vertically resolved measurements of atmospheric trace constituents (ozone, water vapour and aerosol); the methods applied cover almost all relevant lidar techniques. In detail:

·     Two ozone DIAL systems (stationary and mobile), featuring uncertainty levels of 5 % and less in a major part of the operating range; the stationary system has become the primary work horse of lidar-based atmospheric research at IFU. The mobile system, developed in co-operation with OHB System (Bremen), was applied during a number of field campaign until 1999.

·     A water-vapour DIAL, operated at the high-altitude Schneefernerhaus laboratory (2675 m a.s.l.) since 2004. For achieving an operating range up to 12 km a 250 mJ/20-Hz single-mode Ti:sapphire laser system was developed. This project has led to the development of an improved Littman-type optical parametric oscillator in co-operation with Radiant Dyes.

·     A high-spectral resolution aerosol lidar (HSRL): The IFU three-wavelength mobile aerosol lidar originally built in 1978 was modernized and a 532-nm HSR channel was added.

·     An eye-safe 1.56-μm aerosol lidar based on stimulated-Raman shifting 1064-nm radiation in deuterium.

·     Since 2009, a high-power Raman lidar system for extending the water-vapour measurements into the stratospheric has been built alongside the H2O DIAL. This system is based on a 180-W single-line XeCl laser and a receiver with a 1.5-m-diameter primary mirror.

·      A new spatially scanning lidar system for boundary-layer applications is under way.


·     Validation studies for lidar backscatter experiments and contributions to several aerosol field campaigns for characterizing the impact of Alpine and marine aerosol on visibility conditions.

·     Investigation of the impact of atmospheric transport on the vertical distribution of atmospheric trace constituents, with emphasis on the Alpine wind system, stratosphere-to-troposphere transport and long-range (intercontinental) transport of polluted air masses, fire plumes and (North African and Asian) dust.

·     1996: first detection of pronounced North American ozone plumes over Europe; the first publication on this topic [A. Stohl, T. Trickl, Journal of Geophysical Research 104 (1999), 30445] defines a “Fast Moving Research Front” in Geosciences (Thomson ISI, July 2005)

·     Since 2007 a programme of routine lidar measurements of ozone, water vapour and aerosol has been conducted, as one of just a few stations world-wide. A special highlight has been the detection of the extremely low water-vapour content of deep stratospheric air intrusions into the troposphere suggesting very low free-tropospheric mixing of air masses. These findings imply a considerable challenge for tropospheric modelling.

·     A strong impact of stratospheric air intrusions on the troposphere was found. Intrusions have been detected in the free troposphere on up to 80 % of the lidar measurement days. It is now planned to the strong ozone import from the stratosphere for the Zugspitze summit (2962 m a.s.l.), based on observational data alone (1978-2010), revising a preliminary study by H. E. Scheel in 2005.

·     Principal investigator in numerous national and international research projects, the most important ones being the EUROTRAC subprojects TESLAS, TOR and TOR 2, the EU projects VOTALP, VOTALP II, STACCATO, EARLINET, and the project ATMOFAST funded within the programme “Atmosphärenforschung 2000” of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research; work-package co-ordinator in two EU projects

·     Co-ordinator of the project ATMOFAST (Atmospheric Long-range Transport and its Impact on the Trace-gas Distribution in the Free Troposphere over Central Europe, research programme “Atmosphärenforschung 2000” of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research ); as of 2014, ATMOFAST has contributed to 22 reviewed publications.

·     Member of the Task Force on Hemispheric Transport of Air Pollution, organized under the auspices of the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP Convention)

·     Since 2000: Principal investigator for the aerosol lidar activities at Garmisch-Partenkirchen within the Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Composition Change (NDACC, formerly NDSC) focussing on the long-term vertical sounding series of the (mostly volcanic) stratospheric aerosol started in 1976. Fast aerosol removal (from aircraft emissions, desert dust and fires) from the mid-latitude lower stratosphere contrasts the long-lasting contributions from strong tropical eruptions.


Important publications