Lise Meitner group to start work in January
Recruitment has begun at the MPSD for the new independent Lise Meitner Research Group which is due to start its work in January 2020. The group, called Simulations from ab initio approaches: Structure and dynamics from quantum mechanics, will be led by Dr Mariana Rossi.
Dr Rossi aims to develop a new framework for the investigation of realistic bioorganic / inorganic systems with unprecedented resolution and accuracy. Her group will combine first principles quantum mechanics for electrons and nuclei with the power of the Max Planck Society’s supercomputers and innovative machine learning methods to accelerate calculations.
These complex analytical methods will boost the description of atomic structures as well as the nuclear and electronic response properties of matter composed of inorganic and organic components. Organic and bioorganic systems which are bound together by weak interactions are a key research focus of the new group.
“With these methods and applications we can come up with new materials that can be used in different areas of science such as medicine or technology, like functionalized organic-inorganic materials for biosensors and organic optoelectronics. We do fundamental research in order to unravel structure-property relationships in new materials at realistic thermodynamic conditions,” says Dr Rossi.
At the MPSD she will build on her current work in the Otto Hahn Group at the Max Planck Society’s Fritz Haber Institute. “One highlight of our research is that in our simulations, the nuclei as well as the electrons behave quantum mechanically. In the Lise Meitner Group, we will explore new directions which include the simulation of non-linear vibrational spectroscopies and approximations for the inclusion of non-adiabatic effects.“
Two group positions have now been advertised: a PhD and a postdoctoral researcher are due to join Dr Rossi in February 2020. Other members will move with her from Berlin to Hamburg. The Lise Meitner Excellence Program was established by the Max Planck Society in 2018 to attract brilliant female research group leaders. Almost 300 scientists applied; out of those, 12 were appointed.
Mariana Rossi was born in Campinas, Brazil and studied Physics at Bachelor and Masters level at the University of São Paulo. She completed her PhD at the Fritz Haber Institute (FHI), Berlin, on the structure determination of biomolecules from first-principles electronic structure methods.
Since then, she has worked at the postdoc level at the University of Oxford (UK), where she was also a Junior Fellow of St. Edmund Hall, and the École Polytechnique Fédèrale de Lausanne in Switzerland. In late 2016, Dr Rossi became leader of the independent Otto Hahn Group Simulations from Ab Initio Approaches at the FHI.
Her awards include a fellowship for her master studies from the São Paolo Research Foundation (FAPESP), the Otto Hahn Award of the Max Planck Society, and a Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft fellowship for postdoctoral studies. She was also awarded a Junior Research Fellowship at St. Edmund Hall in Oxford and a place in the Minerva Program of the Max Planck Society.