The Research School

Educating young scientists is one of Helmholtz Institute Jena’s foremost goals. The future European-level large-scale projects FAIR (Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research) in Darmstadt and XFEL (European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser Facility) in Hamburg, both coordinated by the Helmholtz Association, will require a large number of skilled scientists working at the interface of optics and accelerator technology. Consequently, HI-Jena provides considerable funds for the promotion of young scientists. To optimally prepare the prospective scientists for their tasks, a structured doctoral program for the PhD students associated to HI-Jena has been formed. Although there are existing graduate programs available at several of the Helmholtz centers, the specific research profile of the Helmholtz Institute Jena and its remoteness relative to the other centers created a large demand for an on-site and tailored graduate education.

With the foundation of the Advanced Photon Science Graduate School (RS-APS), such an education has become possible.  To comply with the structure of Friedrich Schiller University, RS-APS applied for admittance to the university's graduate academy and was accepted on June 25th, 2012. Additionally, the school is in close cooperation with the Abbe School of Photonics, which resides at the Deptartement for Physics and Astronomy (PAF). Moreover the RS-APS is member of  the Darmstadt-based Helmholtz Graduate School for Hadron and Ion Research (HGS-HIRe)  and  grants its supported students access to graduate programs of the Helmholtz Association.

Apart from the scientific work conducted within the research projects pursued at HI-Jena, doctoral students are being offered training courses to consolidate their understanding of their PhD topics, as well as to broaden the students’ soft skills. Soft skills such as time management, collaboration  and public speaking will be crucial for the graduates' future occupations; therefore, the students will be given opportunities to advance their competence in these area. Early networking and internationalization is of equal importance. To this end, the graduate school allocates funds for the organization of workshops and enables students to attend conferences, summer schools, etc.

The school is headed by a three-person committee. During the founding stage of the graduate program, the committee is chaired by the following professors:

  • Prof. Holger Gies, Institute of Theoretical Physics (FSU Jena) and Helmholtz Institute Jena
  • Prof. Thomas Stöhlker, director of Helmholtz Institute Jena and Institute of Optics and Quantum Electronics (FSU Jena)
  • Prof. Christian Spielmann, spokesman of the graduate college, Institute of Optics and Quantum Electronics (FSU Jena) and Helmholtz Institute Jena

The coordinator Dr. Renate Märtin performs organizational tasks with support by the administration of the Helmholtz Institute Jena.


Research School RS-APS


Prof. Dr. Christian Spielmann
Tel: +49 3641 947-230

Scientific Coordinator:

Dr. Renate Märtin
Tel: +49 3641 947-614