On December 14, 2023, the employees of Leibniz IPHT bid a festive farewell to the long-serving Administrative Director Frank Sondermann on his retirement. His successor, Dr. Karina Weber, will take up her position at the beginning of 2024.

Frank Sondermann has accompanied Leibniz IPHT as Administrative Director for over three decades. During this time, the research institute has undergone a remarkable development. Founded in 1992 as the Institute of Physical High Technology (IPHT), today’s Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology is now one of the leading research institutes in the field of optical health technologies.

When Frank Sondermann took over as Administrative Director in 1993, the former state institute initially focused on classic materials science issues. One of the biggest projects in the administrative area right at the beginning was the supervision of the new building on the Jena Beutenberg Campus. The newly constructed laboratory and office building was occupied in 1999 and, with its technological equipment, clean room and fiber drawing tower, still forms the backbone of the institute’s excellent research infrastructure today.

In addition to the scientific and infrastructural achievements, Frank Sondermann also experienced visits from high-ranking political figures during his time in office, including German President Joachim Gauck and the Dutch royal couple, who acknowledged the importance of Leibniz IPHT for research.

“We would like to sincerely thank Frank Sondermann for his constant support and guidance of Leibniz IPHT and wish him health, happiness and many fulfilling moments in his retirement,” said Scientific Director Jürgen Popp at the farewell ceremony for the outgoing Administrative Director on December 14, 2023.

Dr. Karina Weber will take over as Administrative Director of Leibniz IPHT at the beginning of 2024.